13 August 2019

2019 CJA Awards - Part 1

For this post I intended to follow up last month's post on 2019 CJA Award Entries. Last week the Chess Journalists of America (CJA) published their annual list of awards at Awards 2019 (chessjournalism.org).

The intended post would have looked something like last year's 2018 CJA Awards (August 2018), with a short write-up about the winners in my favorite categories and congratulations to all winners. Unfortunately, the list of 2019 awards is so long and so unstructured that I was compelled to load it into a database to understand it.

Due to a number of technical obstacles that presented themselves along the way, what should normally have been a 5-10 minute task turned into a two hour chore, and I finally ran out of time. While I can't yet say much about specific awards, I can say that there are 64 awards total, categorized as follows:-

43 First Place
20 Honorable Mention
   1 ?

That single '?' is in fact a nearly blank award where only the 'Nominator' is listed. Perhaps there are only 63 awards.

While creating the database, I noticed a few other anomalies. One article, 'The 2019 Denver Open - Chess Life Online May 18, 2019' by IM John Watson, received two first place awards -- one for 'Best Analysis - online', and one for 'Best Tournament Report - State/Local - online'. Another category, 'Best Photojournalism Article', had two first place winners.

I'll be back in a few days with the post that I intended for today.


Later: A day after I posted the above, the CJA distributed an email with its list of winners in a more structured format. There's not much to gain by comparing the email to my database, but it did confirm the two separate awards for the same article by IM Watson and a 'tie' in the photojournalism category.

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