Saturday, July 18, 2009

Benjamin Pooh-poohs FMs

Tell us what you think GM Benjamin!

When asked by a junior what it will take to become a FIDE master, American grandmaster Joel Benjamin let loose: "I have to say, I have never heard a developing player define FIDE Master as a career goal. Master yes, grandmaster and international master of course, but an ill-respected title invented by FIDE to squeeze more money from title applications? Well, to each his own."

From GM Joel on How to Make FM.


Anonymous said...

some chess players whinge at any opportuntiy. i once witnesses a player win a prize but refused to accept because he doesn't believe in prizes :) who knows what they are thinking!

Shaun Press said...

Before he became an IM, Aleks Wohl referred to the FM title as the "Fee Master" title. He, and a number of other Australian players who were eligible for the title, declined to apply for it, as they didn't hold it in the highest regard.
I find it amusing that there are some players who did apply for the title, and yet now bitterly complain about others receiving the title. Clearly they fail to see where they sit in the pecking order of 'Masters'.

Chaos said...

Thank you TCG! I am glad someone had the nerve to post what all of us thought when we read Joel Benjamin's article... whats worse is he didn't even have a single bit of advice to offer the kid! I know hundreds of players whose only goal is to make FM including several experts and current masters.

Anonymous said...

who's Benjamin?

Kevin Bonham said...

Fairly odd comment by Benjamin given that the USCF rating threshhold for National Master (2200 USCF) is lower than the rating threshhold for being a "real FM" and Americans (unlike Australians) don't have too many shots at easier FM titles. :)

Paul said...

Would you turn down the FM title ?

ejh said...

I have some sympathy for Benjamin on this - I tend to think a master ought to be "somebody who I can't hope to beat", and I've beaten six of them - but there are arguments in favour of the title, which I would set out here if I didn't want to save them for a possibly forthcoming Streatham and Brixton article ....

Anonymous said...

I am an FM but although I did not apply but was gifted it on my return to chess after 12 years, I do think it is not a bad title for an non professional provided you have gone pass 2300. I even know one player who applied for the CM title so to each his own!

Anonymous said...

(sung to the tune of that song about a pet rat by one recently departEd)

the fm title won't go away
the fm title is here to stay
it is a fide cash cow
fills their coffers up right now
not made to make us say "wow"
at whoever gets one yet again
although every now and then
some make the gm like you, ben

Nic Croad said...

I reasonably recently received the FM title after crossing the 2300 barrier and the NZCF applying on my behalf. Personally I don't read too much into it's value and would not have paid for it myself though. My problem with it is that it has absolutely no value. Even local New Zealand tournaments don't provide reduced or no entry fees to encourage a player of my strengths participation (they are often offered to IM's). Clearly my participation doesn't encourage others to play (in the organisers eyes) as much as an IM or GM.

The NZCF usually applies as the title can be used to create norm opportunities so it has a tangible value to them.