3

In a situation where a mobile phone rings in the middle of the game should the offender's opponent call the arbiter and claim the win.
If claiming is not needed and if the arbiter decides to mark the game as a loss for the offender is it possible to continue the game based on mutual agreement between the players or is the arbiter decision final?

2 Answers 2

3

There are two main sections in the FIDE Laws of Chess: BASIC RULES OF PLAY, which describes the basic rules of the game which pretty much apply regardless of whether the game is played as part of a formal competition or not, and COMPETITION RULES, which describes additional formal rules for FIDE controller competitions.

The word "arbiter" appears only once in the BASIC RULES OF PLAY and I almost think that's a mistake. Arbiters only have a role to play in formal competitions. There are more than 60 occurrences of "arbiter" in the seven articles which comprise the COMPETITION RULES.

Long story short: the arbiter decides what happens in the formal competition. You can decide what happens outside the competition.

So:

is it possible to continue the game based on mutual agreement between the players or is the arbiter decision final?

As regards the competition, the arbiter's word is final and the result gets recorded as a loss for the player whose phone rang. As regards completing the game, most tournaments will have an analysis area. You and your opponent are perfectly free to go there, set your game up and continue.

This is a principle which predates FIDE by at least 1900 years.

5
  • What do you do when the arbiter needs to be kicked from the tournament?
    – Joshua
    Apr 21 at 23:18
  • 1
    @Joshua That sounds like a new question. Apr 22 at 1:17
  • It is difficult to form up the question, but search this page for "stop the circus" and you will find a case recorded that invalidates this answer. senseis.xmp.net/?StubbornPlay
    – Joshua
    Apr 22 at 3:24
  • 1
    @Joshua I don't see how that invalidates anything in the slightest. All that indicates is that arbiters are human, and sometimes make mistakes. Apr 22 at 6:41
  • 2
    @Joshua In the scenario described it is comical that a so-called veteran tournament player doesn't even know the 50-move draw rule. Furthermore, though technically the arbiter should step in after 75 moves to call the game a draw anyway, in practice few arbiters are looking out for this because players are reasonably expected to be aware of the rule and claim the draw (anytime after 50 moves) if they want it Apr 23 at 18:15
2

According to Article 12.3 b of FIDE Handbook of Laws Of Chess:

Without the permission of the arbiter a player is forbidden to have a mobile phone or other electronic means of communication in the playing venue, unless they are completely switched off. If any such device produces a sound, the player shall lose the game.

I think this will answer your question.


is it possible to continue the game based on mutual agreement between the players?

Rules are rules. They are the same for everyone so there's no possibility of mutual agreement between players. Otherwise, this would lead to inequalities.


In a situation where a mobile phone rings in the middle of the game should the offender's opponent call the arbiter and claim the win.

Well, that's the only option left out there. He/She cannot claim the win on their own. They need to call out the Arbiter and let him/her handle the situation.


Example/Similar case:

The latest similar case which I could find on the internet was Nigel Short vs Lorenzo Candian. In their match, Lorenzo was winning his game against Nigel but he lost when his phone rang. Here's a video which you can take a look at to know more about it.

2
  • 1
    Queue hackers remotely breaking into the phones of their superior opponents, turning the ringer on and calling them in order to force a win where they otherwise wouldn't. (Obviously they'd have a compatriot do the actual hacking since they're occupied with the game they're losing...) Apr 21 at 21:13
  • 1
    @DarrelHoffman If you know how to hack into a cellphone, you probably also know how to set it up to play a sound at a certain time without human intervention. Apr 22 at 9:05

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.