IM dpruess
Aug 27, 2009, 5:46 PM |
51 is in the first days of rolling out a new and exciting product: internet chess television. Last Monday, we had our first test broadcast with the community invited to watch live. Erik gave a short message to the community, and then I did a tactic-solving contest. There was plentiful room for technical improvement, but I believe it was also... kind of fun, already! A memorable moment for me was when at some point a member made an observation (there is live chat right alongside the video player) along the lines of "will tv always be this bad?" I hastened to assure him that this was absolutely the worst broadcast we would ever do.

My purpose in this blog is two-fold: to enlist help in designing *our* tv, and to answer some FAQs.

First of all, we need ideas and feedback. Rather than spending ages planning out programming, my idea is to come out with some things that sound interesting, fall flat on our faces a few times, and then make adjustments until it's awesome. So-- tell me what shows you would like to see, what personalities you'd like to see. After you watch, tell me what you saw and liked, tell me what you saw and hated.

But-- there's more-- I also want to invite you... to try your own hand at tv! Got ideas about what would make a great tv show? Why let someone else do your show? Let's talk! I am hoping to discover a wealth of talent here, people. One of our first regular programs will be a member's showcase Saturdays at 10 AM PAC. Depending on what response we get, we will open up more times for member-created shows. This is your chance to prove that chess on TV can work; don't miss it.


"What is TV?"
It's video+audio programming related to chess. You can watch it in your browser at . There is also a chat channel alongside the viewer in which members can discuss the programming, and ask the broadcasters questions.

"When is the next live program?"
The schedule will be posted at, just scroll down. It will be changing quickly in our early days, so check back.

"Can I watch?"
Yes! Some programs will be viewable only by premium members, some by all members. This will be indicated on the schedule. If you tune in for a broadcast and see it playing, you can watch! If you see an annoying but beautiful graphic with the words "DEMO" across it, and information about upgrading your account, well it seems you can't watch this one.

"Who is this guy talking??"
Scroll down and check the schedule; it should indicate the show title and the broadcaster.

"Can I make my own chess tv show??"
Yes, you can! Check out my blog about tv for details!


"May I participate in chat? Are there any standards I should respect?"
Yes, you are quite welcome to participate. There are a couple standards that would be appreciated.
1) Don't spam the same message repeatedly. If someone has an important question for the broadcaster, many spammed messages will make it impossible for the broadcaster to read it before it scrolls away; thus someone won't get their question answered.
2) Respect normal human and standards for respectful interaction with others.
3) Be sensitive to the language and tenor of a particular show and crowd. If a program seems designed to include children, please don't bring foul language and adult themes that would upset their parents into the chat.