Congratulations on being chosen to help administrate the Chessgames.com database of chess players and their games, and thank you kindly for volunteering for the job. Your generous contributions will help provide a better free resource to the worldwide chess community.
This document is an outline of the responsibilities and conventions used to fill in the player biographical information, tournament information, and to make changes to game and tournament data. Please refer to this when you have a question, and if the matter still is unclear, contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be sure to check this page periodically for changes.
THE ADMINISTRATION FORMS: PLAYERS, GAMES, AND TOURNAMENTS
As a Chessgames Editor, when you visit player pages from now on you will see a form entitled the Administrative Player Editor. This form can be found at the bottom, below the kibitzing. If you have information to contribute about this player, here is where you supply it. Simply fill out the form and press 'Update Player Information.' Your changes will take effect immediately, and you've just made the database that much more valuable.
Likewise, you will now see a form at the bottom of game pages, called the Administrative Game Editor. This form will allow you to update vital information on specific games, such as the exact date it was played, and the round number.
Recently we have added similar functionality to tournaments, although at the time of this writing (October 2012) it is very new and restricted only to certain historical tournaments. It is not yet to be used for recent "homepage" tournaments.
Let's first discuss editing games. At the bottom of each game page, you'll see a form that looks something like this:
In the example above, the fields for "Event", "Site", "Date" are "Round" are visible. Because the round number is not provided in the PGN, a question-mark ("?") appears in that field. You can replace such question-marks with real data, or correct information that you otherwise know to be inaccurate. When you are done making changes, push the button labeled Update Game Information and your changes are instantly accepted.
If you know some of the facts and not others, it's perfectly acceptable to update the information you know and leave the rest alone.
Accidentally swapping the month and day around is a common mistake. Always keep in mind that we use YYYY.MM.DD notation for all database purposes. (Remember, "month in the middle".)
TOURNAMENT EDITING / INDUCTION
Chessgames maintains a table of chess events with some 100,000 records. Unfortunately, the data are often inconsistent, incorrect, or simply missing. For instance: one may see the same event labelled as "US-Ch 56/57" in one game, "USA Championship 1956" on another, and even as "?" elsewhere. The "Site" tag can be equally unrealiable. This is not only a problem for chess historians, it also prevents Chessgames from providing an intelligent kibitzing area for important events.
To remedy this daunting problem, the tireless efforts of our Chessgames Editors sort matters out using a powerful three-step process that we call "Tournament Induction":
Even if you don't participate in the process above, there is always a demand to update tournament information on historical tournaments which have already been inducted. You can do this in the window labelled "ADMINISTRATIVE TOURNAMENT EDITOR" at the bottom of any such tournament.
TIP: You can see the latest tournaments inducted by Chessgames Editors scrolling to the bottom of our New Tournaments Page. You can see all tournaments, combined and chronological, at our Tournaments Index.
NOTE: Unlike most Chessgames Editor functions, the tournament induction process is relatively transparent. This means that if you participate, you will lose a certain degree of privacy: your collections, nominations, votes, actions, date of actions, comments, and numerous other details may become available to other Chessgames Editors and the general public. This is intended to keep the nomination/voting process open and honest.
Editing players is much more complex than editing games or tournaments, due to the richness of biographies and the sheer number of fields available to edit. The rest of this document will cover some of the finer points of player editing, including good biographical practices and even some grammar tips.
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN
This field is the country in which the player was born. In some cases, the country of origin might not be on the pulldown list, especially in cases where the country no longer exists (Prussia, Bohemia, USSR, etc.). In such a case, please contact us and we will update the country list.
If the player is/was of a different nationality than above, fill in this field. In most cases this should be left blank.
Either "M" for male, or "F" for female. This field is not optional, but it defaults to "M". For female players, please do not forget to set the gender field to "F".
Computer chess engines may be designated as either gender, at the whimsy of the programmer. Therefore Fritz is male, while Rybka is designated as female.
DATE OF BIRTH
The date of the player's birth is described in YYYY.MM.DD format. For example, March 9th, 1943, would be 1943.03.09. If only the year is known, fill in zeros for the month and day, for example 1873.00.00. Below are some examples of the right ways, and the wrong ways, to enter dates. Never enter dates as you see in the right hand column below; they may look sensible, but they are not in the proper format.
EXAMPLES OF DATE FORMAT: RIGHT WRONG! 1943.03.09 1943.3.9 1985.12.29 1985-12-29 1967.10.20 1967/10/20 1863.00.00 1863.??.??
DATE OF DEATH
As above, but this field contains information on the day that the player passed away. In cases where the player is still alive, or if the date is not known at all, leave this blank.
The FIDE Number field accepts a number (usually between 6-8 digits) which is the ID number of that player at FIDE. Of course, this field only applies to modern players listed in the FIDE database. The site ratings.fide.com has a look-up feature where you can find a player's FIDE number if you know their name, and vice versa.
This field is very useful for our database purposes, but optional. If you don't know a player's FIDE number or are unclear about it, just leave it blank.
Please note that this field can only possibly apply to modern players.
This is the largest area of the player's information record, used to provide a short biography of the player.
The following guidelines should be used when constructing a biography:
There are two alternate font faces/sizes which can be invoked. This allows you to use small-text, and italicized text. They are accessed by the open and closed bracket character.
OTHER HELPFUL HINTS
PLAYER OF THE DAY
If you feel especially motivated, you might want to fill out the biography for the Player of Day when it is missing, or improve it if it exists. All major players will eventually be picked for Player of the Day status, so this is an excellent way to make sure that we don't forget any important players.
Due to the difficulty in keeping the biography database updated, it is our policy to intentionally avoid including things in the biographies that would quickly become out of date.
Current ratings are not necessary - We automatically track the ratings of all major players, including their blitz and rapid ratings. Please do not repeat this information in the biography.
Avoid statements like "the current Dutch Champion" or "top rated player in Brazil" as these could be untrue in the future.
If a player makes a significant achievement (e.g. becoming one of the top 10 players, or winning a major tournament) then it is appropriate to mention this, with a date (at least a year) included.
CHANGING WORK OF OTHER ADMINS
Treat the work of other administrators with respect, but at the same time, feel free to make improvements. If you see a mistake, by all means, fix it, especially if it is a mistake of a factual nature. If you can add important information to the biography, do so. If you think you can rewrite something so that it reads more clearly, this is also helpful. However, remember that you are changing another person's work, so try to be sure that your changes are clearly improvements.
As a volunteer biography editor, your account is far more powerful than a typical chessgames member; therefore, you must take extra steps to keep your account access limited. You must not give your password to any other user. If you use a computer that other people have access to, you should sign-out of Chessgames every time you leave your terminal. (There is a link that reads 'logout' at the bottom of each page.)
All changes to the database are written to a logfile, including the administrator who made the change. We consult this logfile in rare cases where vandalism is suspected.
If you suspect that another editor is doing something incorrect, counter-productive, or violating copyright laws, please email us at email@example.com and inform us.
By choosing to volunteer for this job, you do so without expectation of any compensation, monetary or otherwise, for the work performed pursuant to this document.
By choosing to volunteer for this job, you agree to allow Chessgames to track and maintain logfiles of your activities on the chessgames.com website, including your IP address.
By choosing to volunteer for this job, you must agree to not knowingly violate copyright laws when supplying us with biographical material. Chessgames reserves the right to delete or alter your work, in part or in whole. You forfeit all copyright protection with regards to work that you provide for this job, even if it is an original creation on your part.
Chessgames Services LLC, 20/20 Technologies, and all officers/employees of either or both organizations, shall not be held liable for any direct or indirect, incidental or consequential damages or losses arising out of this job.