The 21st Century Chest Boom

In the wake of a Netflix original TV series and rising popularity on platforms like Twitch and YouTube, chess has been making a recent resurgence. The story starts with an all in one platform called Chess.com. The Site is an free internet chess server, with aspects of forums, and a social media site. Games are played all over the globe from almost any device with apps on IOS and Android. Chess.com reports that as a result of the global ease of access to the game, they have “Grown from 20-50% every year since starting out 13 years ago. This month, everything changed. Not just for us, but for the entire world.” (erik, Chess.com)[1]

Figure 1: Server Load over 2019-2020

Given the Global Pandemic and a likely rise in Netflix Binging an inspirational story of a Chess Grand Master, The Queens Gambit, chess has scene an influx of players. At the end of December 2020, Chess.com reported a boom in users totaling 50 million [2]. Chess.com is free to play. There is plenty of lessons and computer bots to learn from so its a logical site for new fans to end up on.

Another area in which Chess has grown dramatically is on YouTube and Twitch. Many of the worlds greatest GMs and IMs spend there practice hours live for any fan to see and then upload videos to YouTube. Others aim to entertain by putting together celebrity chess tournaments that peak at over a 150,000 viewers [3]. If you haven’t already tried it, I would definitely recommend chess as a hobby and Chess.com as a great site to play.

 

[1] https://www.chess.com/blog/erik/chess-com-during-this-global-stay-home-moment (Links to an external site.)

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chess.com (Links to an external site.) (Ref. 1 “Chess.com Staff” https://www.chess.com/club/chesscom-staff (Links to an external site.))

[3] https://esportsobserver.com/chess-com-twitch-pogchamps2/#:~:text=According%20to%20Chess.com%2C%20the,the%20run%20of%20the%20tournament (Links to an external site.).

Edited by Peter Geis on Feb 15 at 1:25pm

MCEN 4100-003

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