Coffee, Kirsan, Carlsen & YouTube viewer fraud
How are you today? Are you getting enough coffee? I know that sounds a bit meddling — and some might consider it almost as intrusive as asking if one is getting enough sex — but the question needs to be asked. And better asked by me than by a total stranger, no?
One of my readers (and fellow blogger) Michael Bacon recently sent me the link to an interesting article about coffee habits and understanding the limits to how much coffee you should consume. Entitled ‘Are you overdosing on caffeine?’ LINK
The article is well intended and meant to help the reader judge his own coffee status. Sleeping issues. Fatigue. Side effects. As well, it discusses withdrawal symptoms should you decide to cut down on your coffee intake.
All very useful from a general perspective. I recognized some of the issues. However, the article is a bit biased. For example, the title. I have already written here on this blog about ‘overdosing’ on coffee. This is physically IMPOSSIBLE!
Then there is the list of side effects. But not nearly enough mention of the benefits. Especially if you are a busy student and can not afford to sleep 8 hours a night. Or if you are the kind of person who just prefers to function under pressure or enjoys the rush of high performance.
No doubt coffee is a personal issue. Of course, it only makes good sense to approach your lifestyle choices and preferences with caution and open eyes. And that is why I found the article that Michael sent me quite well written.
Carlsen is The Man!
After his smashing victory at the Gashimov Memorial in early April and now last weekend’s equally impressive win at the Grenke International, there is no room for doubt that Magnus Carlsen is the world’s best tournament player.
My only question is that if Carlsen can perform so brilliantly in tournaments, then why is his recent match record one of the worse in history? Tied 6-6 against Karjakin (1 win each), and then a super boring 6-6 against Caruana (12 straight draws!), there are simply no obvious explanations. Perhaps Carlsen could shed some light on this issue?
What is happening with Kirsan?
The Sugar King
Former FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov is back in the news as president of International Sugar Corporation. He recently signed a deal to build a $250,000,000 sugar factory in Celina, Russia. China has a 30% stake in the project. Work on the project is to begin at the end of the summer and it is expected to be completed in 2021.
Kirsan bought out France’s Sucre&Denrees stake in this corporation back in 2012.
Are YouTube Numbers Real?
Readers who have been following my blog for any substantial period of time know that I have often written about the number of chess players on the internet. (Related to this is the approximate number of chess players in the world, a controversial and hotly debated topic.)
Given that YouTube publishes the number of views per video, this has helped in getting a general idea of the number of chess players online.
What I have observed over the years is that generally the number has normally been in the low-thousands per video, sometimes tens of thousands if, for example, Carlsen is playing a match for the World Championship, and every now and then a more dramatic chess event (such as the Nakamura touch move incident against Aronian) might attract between 100,000 and 200,000 views. But this last item is very rare, indeed.
Apparently all this changed 6 months ago…
These two YouTube channels above have been exceptionally busy, each producing hundreds of chess videos.
Antonio Radic (Croatia), of Agadmator, works alone and must be some sort of a workaholic who rarely sleeps. A player of about 2000 elo strength, Radic is an excellent communicator and story teller.
Today most of Radic’s videos easily get more than 50,000 views and one or two have topped a million views. Though he started his YouTube channel late in 2016, all of his real success has come in the last 6 months or so. (His older videos have also retroactively seen their viewship increase to similar numbers)
Just last week his video discussing the Carlsen vs Aronian game from Grenke got more than 70,000 views in the first 24 hours, while the official Grenke video featuring Carlsen himself discussing the game got less than 9,000 views. Unbelievable! (As of today, Radic’s video has been seen by 109,000 while the official video has been seen by 37,000.)
Sagar Shah and Amruta Mokal (both from India) are the founders of ChessBaseIndia and opened their YouTube channel sometime in 2017. Since then they have produced an average of 5 videos a day (!), but to be fair they have a large and dedicated team behind them.
Their average video has about a tenth of Agadmator’s viewers, but a number of their recent videos have topped 5,000,000 views, including one that has topped 20,000,000 views. All this was in the past 6 months and, curiously, all featuring the young Indian star Praggnanandhaa. Also completely unbelievable!
I congratulate both Agadmator and the ChessBaseIndia on their recent outstanding successes and wish them the best in the future. It just goes to show that hard work, talent and opportunity can create real miracles!
Sadly, their tremendous success has not been reproduced in any other chess YouTube channel. Chess24 comes close (with slightly less than 100,000 subscribers) even though it has been around for going on 6 years now, more than both Agadmator and ChessBaseIndia combined, and with significantly more funding.
Is it easy to buy fake views & subscribers?
Many people are not aware that there are dozens of companies that compete against each other in selling fake views, fake subscribers, fake follows, etc. Most are based in India, and it is therefore surprisingly inexpensive.
The entire industry began years ago almost as soon as YouTube started and at first it catered to respectable YouTube channels that simply wanted to grow their channels quickly. The logic was that it is easier to attract more viewers if you already have a high number of views registered.
One of the biggest viewer frauds that occurred in YouTube was inside the music industry. When YouTube caught on to what was happening, they cut billions of views from their accounts.
Today YouTube will ban your channel if they catch you buying fake views and fake subscribers. If the reader would like to find out more about this topic, just do a google search on fake views on YouTube. In the meantime, I present two instructive videos. Enjoy!