Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Chess and Web 2.0

In the latest Australian Chess Magazine, Brian Jones devotes his whole editorial to "Web 2.0". BJ's point is straightforward enough: to use technology, the web 2.0 kind, to promote and raise the profile of chess. He talks about bulletin boards, blogs, and Flickr; even YouTube as well as MySpace get a mention.

Rather ironic I thought. Here is a print man talking about technologies that pretty much put his medium on flimsy footing. Just think: what is in any chess magazine today that can't be delivered more speedily, cheaply and in larger quantities via the web? Not a lot! Pretty soon chess magazines will be dead - including, I predict - that most exalted of them all, New In Chess. Which makes me wonder also: might BJ be foretelling the demise of his printed ACM? ACM 2.0, perhaps, subscription via the web! Why not, indeed? Maybe then those articles will at last have the immediacy they truly deserve.

Still, I must thank BJ. Yours truly gets a mentioned, not once, but twice! I love it, great, free publicity! Maybe I should turn this whole blogging thing into a for-profit venture, you know, before he beats me to it.

Just kidding.

Also in the editorial are my fellow bloggers, Shaun Press (ChessExpress) and Trent Parker (Blog of a Chess Nut). The former is especially interesting as it's written by a seasoned organiser, arbiter and an Olympiad player (for PNG). I especially like it when his posts venture into the political, like this one. There's our blogging friend being called "incompetent" by no less than the sitting ACF head honcho, Gary Wastell. What was Mr Wastell thinking? I bet he never thought that little moment of brain implosion to be pasted on some web page somewhere. And that folks is another benefit of the Web 2.0 world. There's a gun sight on every chess politician's head. Figuratively speaking, that is.

I end with a couple of questions. BJ's piece rounds off with this sentence: "The chess community must benefit as we increasingly use modern technology to raise the profile of chess in Australia!" But how exactly? With these blogs, forums, Flickr sites, etc - isn't the community just talking to itself?

Over to you.

By the way, this little video is interesting.


Anonymous said...

I must disagree with you Amiel. Print has been going a long time and will be strong for at least another 50 years.

Websites are here today and gone tomorrow. Very little is kept forever. If you don't believe me try looking for the web sites of the past 10 Australian Championships.

How will we raise the profile of chess using web 2.0? By chess topics being read by non-chess players. For example, the ACF submission to the Review of the Australian Sports Act 1989 will be available on the web soon!

Anonymous said...

Brian Jones magazine may be made defunct by a well run chess site covering the australian chess scene but New In Chess is definitely not going bust anytime soon.
Even with Chessbase's international coverage New In Chess flourishes. Why? Because it pays for quality annotations by the top players.

What might happen with New In Chess though is that the print magazine moves online..with video coverage.

Anonymous said...

chess spans the whole community not just generation y so print is still relevant to dispense information and more easy on the eyes than the computer screen or mobile phone!

Anonymous said...

The print media is dying. Look at the advertising revenues lost to Google that were once the province of the New York Times, for example.
Once again chess players who are critical of the internet had better start to live in the real world.
A computer screen is easier on the eyes and is very "green" i.e. no waste paper!

Phil Willis said...

I'm sure both web-based and paper-based media will be around for many years to come.

For me, the exciting part is that many more bloggers and people that write for fun (rather than profit) are getting an opportunity to get their views out there.

As a friend of mine once said: newspapers are here to stay because you can't clean the BBQ with an Apple Mac. ;)