Monday, 22 October 2012

A big metal box

Chessvibes is reporting on an alleged cheating incident from the first weekend of the German Bundesliga. German GM Falko Bindrich was defaulted by the arbiter after confessing that he had a smart phone on his person, and then refusing to allow the arbiter to examine it. Suspicion was aroused after Bindrich was observed going to the toilet, when it was his move, on a number of occasions.
I've commented on this issue previously, including offering up a number of solutions, including the not so serious morph suit/nude chess tournament. But it is a serious problem, requiring a serious solution. For me the most obvious one is that organisers should create a storage area or container for all electronic devices. Players would then be required to hand over their phones etc before each round, and only receive them back when permanently leaving the playing venue. This would not only deal with the issue described above, but would also reduce the chance of move signalling, as seen in the Feller case.
I will endeavor to try this system at the up coming Vikings weekender, although ironically, we don't default players for mobile phone offences at this event (as it is not FIDE rated). I instead give the opponent a time bonus. However, this may be an advantage in this case, as the risk in trying any new system is that confusion, rather than deceit, may be the main reason why players forget to hand their phones in.

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