Friday, 29 November 2013

Shifting Models

I've subscribed to Chess Vibes Openings (CVO) over the years, but the latest issue (No. 256) is also its last. CVO was a weekly newsletter which surveyed the latest in opening theory, mixing deep analysis and statistical observations. It focused on the top players at high level events, with the idea of following the latest opening trends.
However the reason why the issue is the final one has something to do with money, but not in the normal, pessimistic way (ie lack of sales). Instead the parent body of CVO, ChessVibes has been bought out by As a result there have been some obvious consolidation of products, with CVO being absorbed by's own Master Bulletin.
This may in fact be a precursor to the next stage of monetization of online chess products. The bigger players in the market may by up the more successful, but smaller operations, leaving the rest to struggle on. While this has been a growing trend in the computer application market over the last few years, applying the same ideas to content hasn't been that common. I guess a big test will be if someone comes up with something new in the chess market (eg a better way of presenting live games) and then see who scoops it up.

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