Electronic Devices Policy

This policy applies where specified in any tournament description, advanced advertising, or where designated by a tournament director.

1. While playing, players may not possess or use cellphones or other electronic devices capable of chess analysis or communication, without permission of a Tournament Director. A player possessing on their person (even if turned off) or using an electronic device during play will be penalized.

2. Chess clocks and approved electronic score keeping devices are permitted. Approved devices must not be capable of chess analysis or communication.

3. During play all electronic devices, except those exempted by rule 2, must be stored in a bag or case, etc. and must be turned off (not vibrate, silent, sleep or airplane mode). The bag or case must remain at the playing table while the game is in progress. The phone facing up on the playing surface is acceptable, but may not leave the board until the game is over.

4. A player whose electronic device makes an audible noise in the tournament room while a game is in progress will be penalized. If the offending player’s game is over, the penalty shall apply to the following round.

5. A player who needs to make a phone call during play should see a TD and request permission to do so.

A player who anticipates possibly receiving an emergency call should notify a TD at least one hour in advance, and will usually be provided with an alternate number for the caller.

6. The penalty for violating these rules may be any of the following:

a. The player is forfeited.
b. 30 minutes or 50% of the remaining time, whichever is less, is deducted from the player’s clock.
c. In certain circumstances, such as if no more than 5 moves have been played, the offender may receive a warning rather than a penalty.

The TD will determine the penalty or combination of penalties, taking into consideration the details of the offense. A second offense will generally result in forfeit. If there is evidence of cheating the player will be forfeited and usually ejected from the tournament with no refund.

A single penalty is generally applied for simultaneous violation of multiple rules. For example, a player penalized for using a cell phone is not also penalized for having it visible.

7. The TD may ask a player to allow the TD to inspect the player’s clothes, bags, personal items or person. The TD will make every effort possible to respect players’ privacy and sensitivity while ensuring the integrity of the game. Declining to cooperate with a search request may result in forfeit of game and ejection from the tournament with no refund.

8. While games are in progress, spectators (if allowed) may not possess or use cellphones or other electronic devices capable of chess analysis or communication within the playing halls. Spectators with such devices will be asked to leave.