It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World

  • GM Gserper
  • | Apr 29, 2012

Recently it has become fashionable to criticize FIDE.  Indeed, some of the FIDE inventions could be featured in the "you cannot make this up" column. But they definitely managed to achieve one goal: chess is 'rediscovered' by the media. Whether it is a plan to hold the World Championship in Iraq defying the UN sanctions or the latest 'dress code' for chess players, we are back on the first pages of newspapers and TV! 

Here is my list of winning FIDE ideas:

#3. The doping test. People argue that this test is pointless since there are no known drugs that enhance human ability to play chess.  That might be true, but probably FIDE had a different idea.  These days the main threat to chess is computer cheating.  FIDE has realized that even though the computers are very smart they still have something to learn from humans. We still can do something the computers can't!  Of course you already realized what I am talking about.  Computers cannot pee and this is how they can be caught. So if you can provide a sample of your urine, then you are definitely not a computer!  I just have a hard time imagining the old classical chess players in this situation.  What would Capablanca say if he was approached by a Tournament Director and asked to pee? On the other hand I have a pretty good idea what Fischer would do in this ridiculous situation. 

#2. "Zero tolerance rule". So, you are late for the game (even if just by 5 seconds) and you get a forfeit. I don't even know where to start. So you don't know how to beat Kasparov?  Don't you have friends? A couple of guys with strong arms or a buxom girl with a nice smile could stop the mighty Garry on his way to the game.  Remember, all you need is just a couple of seconds delay!

#1 And the winner is... FIDE's crusade against draws. Don't get me wrong, I am  for fighting chess too, but what about simple common sense? Besides, if a player gets thousands of dollars in appearance fee to play in a closed round robin tournament, then the organizers can tell him all the do's and don'ts. Or the way Vincent Benedict (from Twins) eloquently put it: "Money talks and #$@& walks!" (Of course I totally agree with his brother Julius' question: "How can #$@& walk?") But when a player pays for the airfare, hotel, meals as well as the tournament entry fee, he has the right to quote the good old Vincent, and since now it is the chess player who is paying, he'll be absolutely right! 

In the last European Championship two players got a double forfeit for agreeing to a draw after a three fold repetition of the position because it was still less than the 40 moves required by organizers for a draw agreement.  As a result, in the next round the following game was produced which I would call "Do not mess with chess players!"

Maybe people who hate all draws (and especially short ones) should look at the next game. No one in his right mind would ever call either player a 'Drawmeister', it is rather just the opposite. But what can you do? Sometimes when you gotta draw, you gotta draw!

I'll use this beautiful game as a test, so try to play like these two giants.


It's too bad that today both Fischer and Tal would get a double forfeit for this short draw...


  • 23 months ago


    Nabbit,  a game is not automatically drawn after 3 repetitions. The game continues if none of the players claims the draw.

    BTW a new rule in FIDE's laws of chess, valid from July 1 2014, says that a game is automatically drawn if the same position has appeared for at least five consecutive alternate moves by each player, but that rule was not introduced when the game in question was played.

  • 2 years ago


    The zero tolerance and the draw rule are just stupid rules made by stupid idiots to please the stupider part of the chess community. @lovenature, i play clash of clans, what town hall level are you. I am 7

  • 2 years ago


    Why did game one not draw after the third repitition? Tal-Fischer Game was nice though. 

  • 2 years ago


    anyone here play clash of clans

  • 2 years ago


    why not invent a rule, where female chess players from 16 - 35
    have to play in a bikini.
    Thereby chess would be on the first pages and more in
    TV, no ?

  • 5 years ago


    TQ SIR...

  • 5 years ago


    Chouldn't disagree more. Most of the rules seem stupid because they are. They are mostly based on misguided attempt to make chess  a more spectator friendly sport. The reality is though for people not interested in chess, watching game is always going to be as exciting as watching paint dry. So classical chess is being destroyed by FIDE for no reason.

  • 5 years ago


    Very good article. Of course, this rules seem stupid and funny but I am sure that FIDE is right because this rules do not let to happen fast draws, etc. Repeat position, repeat. Maybe your opponent will find serious improvement to make advantage while repetition and will have much more time to use it (time addition after 40 moves, etc.). It is difficult to agree at all with "Zero tolerance rule", because someone who is late always gets less time as punishment. Also such cruel punishment will make chess players preferring to run to come 5-10 minutes earlier instead of visiting toilet or eating and brushing teeth before road. Maybe some chess players will come 30 minutes earlier and have meal in public place not comfortable for it and eat fast food instead of good. Computer assistance should be forbidden officially! Why not? What is bad in that?

  • 5 years ago


    In addition to Hanka's post: The scary thing is, there's already a World Chess Boxing Organization that was founded in Germany in 2003.

  • 5 years ago


    woud'nt the top one be a draw

  • 5 years ago


    nice one

  • 5 years ago


    "What would Capablanca say if he was approached by a Tournament Director and asked to pee? On the other hand I have a pretty good idea what Fischer would do in this ridiculous situation. "Smile


  • 5 years ago


    All the more reasons to split from FIDE, and not to join them for those who haven't joined. They would do anything to make money, including ruining chess itself. Those who can't appreciate the beauty of chess don't deserve to be a chess governing body. Next they will embrace chess-boxing, and invent chess-baseball, chess-athletics, chess-comedy, and eventually chess tragedy.

  • 5 years ago


    If drugs can't help to play better, then don't use them and you'll pass all drug tests. Most of other sportsmen do the same. Yes, it is annoying to do testing,  but it is the same in other sports too.

    And of course that you have to be on time, you have to be on time for tennis match, for basketball game...

  • 5 years ago


    " We still can do something the computers can't!"

    Some of them can't calculate 48/2(9+3). lol

  • 5 years ago


    The closest thing I've found to something that works is the 3-1-0 point allocation for W-D-L.

  • 5 years ago


    Excellent article, 2 interesting games.

  • 5 years ago


    hmm...  Doping... All professionals should be drug free, performance enhancing or not.  Period.

    zero tolerance?  here's a thought.  Be early!  Late people who lack the courtesy of punctuality is one of my biggest pet peeves.  Most sports are timed, get over it.

    Draw rule....stupid.  If two Masters make all the right moves and the position calls for a 3 fold repetition... then it's a draw.  It doesn't matter if it happens before 40 moves.  A draw is a draw, that's just part of the game.  If your goal is to reduce the number of drawn games and encourage players to fight for a win then give them incentive.  They only play for a draw when it benefits them.... here's one thought:  offer a bonus prize for the number of wins?  Or divide the prize money into teir's:  Each game win earns $X.xx  and then the Match winner earns an additional $X.xx  Then each game has a chance be valuable for a win.

  • 5 years ago


    A draw is what happens when both players play perfectly.....why would you punich someone for that?

  • 5 years ago


    I agree about the draw rules, but they are a consequence of the fact that many many chess "players" rated 1300 or so, who are the majority of chess fans, are convinced that "draws are boring".

    In order to please these ignorant people, FIDE is trying to impose their will on the rest of the chess players.

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