Originally posted by Hindstein
I agree, there could easily be some here.
What I think Horsey's point is (please correct me if I am wrong) is that it would seem that many strong players around the world could be put off playing here due to the issues of cheating and allegations that fly around any strong player that dares to show their face.
This throws up a statistic that I read ...[text shortened]... nable incentive (ie free subscription) the playing community here could be the real winner.
I think that offering free subscriptions to GMs and IMs would be an interesting experiment. But I doubt that there would be many takers.
For one thing, the subscription (at $30 per year) is so cheap that it wouldn't be much of an incentive. They would much rather be paid. Especially as many people seem to assume that the GMs would need to make themselves available for plenty of challenge games, play for clans, give tuition and regularly post in the forums.
Secondly, if GMs and IMs are already playing anonymously on the site, it's because they wish to remain anonymous. I imagine they just want to quietly play some chess without being constantly pestered for games and advice.
Thirdly, a lot of GMs won't play on correspondence sites because they don't want to be bashed up by a lot of engine users. They know that their GM title will act as a big magnet for every kid with an engine who wants to boast to their mates that they have beaten a famous player.
Also, as has been pointed out already, it would be very hard to put in place a fool proof method of verifying identities. The site admin might have to enter into prolonged correspondence or ask for documents to be posted to them. It would be a lot of hassle on their part, and would cost them money in the short term, although that would probably be recouped later with an increase in membership.
Finally, although it would be very nice to have such players on the site, nobody is above the law. The GMs and IMs would have to be treated with the same level of scepticism as any other high rated player on the site. Their games would inevitably attract a great deal of attention and will be analysed by the game mods. Having a GM or IM title should not protect them if the game mods find overwhelming evidence of engine use.