Online-Rated US Chess Events

On March 25, 2020, the US Chess Executive Board passed the following motion 7-0: The Executive Board (EB) moves that all games submitted by Tournament Directors (TDs) for rating that were played online via the internet or by other means specified in Chapter 10 of the Rules of Chess (7th Ed.) shall only affect players' online ratings. Online play shall not be used to update players' over-the-board ratings. This motion, while defining online play as ratable strictly through the “online-only” category in the US Chess database, actually expands affiliate privileges as now any qualifying affiliate can run online-quick or online-blitz rated tournaments, effective immediately. US Chess has modified the TD/Affiliate event submission area to include a check box for online rated events. These events will appear in members’ MSA history with “ONL” in front of the ratings update. Please note: these events will not affect players OTB ratings, but fall into a separate category of US Chess rated events. The motion only provides for online-quick or online-blitz events at this time, meaning that any such events cannot use a time control slower than Game/29 and also cannot be FIDE rated. Online-blitz events encompass time controls between G/3;+2 and up to G/10;d/0, while online-quick events use a time control between G/10;+1 up to G/29;d/0. Update on May 11: US Chess has extended the waiver of all ratings fees for online-only events  through May 31, 2020. Starting June 1, 2020, all online-only events will be charged ratings fees equivalent to regular OTB events ($0.25/game). Please remember: US Chess membership requirements have not changed and it remains the TD’s responsibility to ensure all participants are current members. END Update. Submitting the tournament rating report will follow exactly the same procedures in the TD/A area that tournament directors are familiar processing. A reminder that events can be either input into your pairing software, generating the three ‘export’ files which can be uploaded, or events can be input directly online, using the “Enter New Tournament” feature – which uses an online data entry form instead and is on the same page of the TD/A. Using either method, the way to designate the tournament as being an “Online Event” will be the same. On the right side of the Rating Report Edit Form, underneath where the Time Control is listed, there are the Other Section Info options. One of those five checkboxes (in bold font for the time being, to bring added awareness to its location) is the selection for After doing a Save on the section, the line with the Time Control will now indicate, in red, Blitz Rated ONLINE RATINGS or Quick Rated ONLINE RATINGS. This ensures that you will be submitting a tournament report that only affects the Online ratings, not the OTB ones. An example submission is below: The Ratings Department will monitor submitted events to ensure compliance with US Chess rules, particularly those around online ratings and membership requirements for rated events.  Potential penalties for violating these rules are the same as for OTB events. Instructions on creating an online-only rated event through and will be coming very soon.  Links to the relevant literature will be added to this release. Please send any questions about this procedure to our Ratings Department,


In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Wow! This is terrific; thanks US Chess! =)

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Unfortunately, regular time controls are excluded. I was hoping to run G/40+5 or 45+5.

In reply to by John Moldovan (not verified)

This is apparently changing very soon. Already, if you look up any player in the U.S. Chess Player-Rating Lookup, everybody is now listed with SIX, not five, ratings: OTB regular, OTB quick, OTB blitz, online regular (this one is new), online quick, and online blitz. So far, everybody is listed as Unrated in the online regular system, meaning that this system has not actually been launched yet, but (probably) soon will be. This might mean (I hope so) that, if anybody wants to run an online regular (slow) tournament NOW, they should go ahead and do so, but the organizer will not be able to submit it for U.S. Chess online regular rating until that system is up and running.

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Thumbs up--way up!

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Perhaps US Chess could create a TLA for all online events from various clubs/state affiliates along with their formats. (prizes/entry fee/time/etc.) A smart move to allow this format to be accessible to general public!

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Are these on any chess server the TD/Organizer wants to use? e.g. Lichess,, etc.?

In reply to by Bryan Castro (not verified)

I would like to know about this also. Lichess doesnt seem to have very good control on this. It looks like does some verification against username and their uscfIDs.

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

I think G/25;+4 is OK for Online Quick rating. Is it right?

In reply to by Liang Shi (not verified)

Yes. If mm + ss is less than 30, where mm is the number of minutes in the time control and ss is the number of seconds in the delay or increment, then you're good.

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

[…] recently released decision by the US Chess Executive Board cleared the path for organizers across the country to run US Chess […]

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

[…] Click here to view original web page at […]

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

[…] vacation from over-the-board (OTB) chess got me thinking. Online chess exploded onto the scene. US Chess even rates Blitz and Quick games.  Club Swiss events are also possible using pairings (etc.) from offsite US Chess certified […]

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