Chess in Newspapers
Twenty years ago I used to write a column in the local Telegraph & Argus. This is an evening newspaper which supplies the Bradford and surrounding district. It contained results and reports of matches and at the time was the main way to keep up with the local chess results and news.
With the advent of Internet Sites such as ours you may think that there is less need for Newspapers to report local chess news. I think this is wrong on so many levels and would strongly argue otherwise.
· When a newspaper hits the doormat it reaches so many people.
· It is a way of perpetually advertising the local league and how healthy it is.
· It allows the league and local clubs to blow their own trumpet about how successful they have been locally, in Yorkshire and even nationally.
· It allows you to feature and promote new initiatives such as junior training, beginner’s classes or even an open day for a recruitment drive.
Although all this can be done on Internet Sites, and undoubtedly done far better, there is one significant difference, a telling factor that screams out at me.
People would generally only reach our internet site if they bother to search for it. This means they will already be interested in finding something out about chess or already have an interest in it. But what if you want to reach the former school player who has suddenly got too old to play in his Sunday league football team? Or the parent who’s child has shown an interest in playing games? Or the divorcee who is in sudden need of a hobby?
If they open their local newspaper which runs stories like the following links wouldn’t it be likely to stimulate the interest we are looking for?
Once the interest is there then the Internet Site comes into its own. Especially if it is easily found on search engines, tells people who to contact and how to join a club.
So my questions to the chess players in Yorkshire is which of our local Newspapers have either a regular chess column or regular chess articles?
Does your league or chess club have a regular contributor or columnist who writes for the paper concerned?
Bradford & District league have tried continue to keep a regular column going in all this time through a press officer. The current Press officer is the league President John Holliday.
I have started a thread in the forum for you to let us know what you think.