Thursday, August 23, 2012

Inside the Scrabble Cheating Scandal

Indeed - Scrabble has a cheating scandal.

More from the Atlantic...

For those of us who don't compete and may not even play Scrabble, such dastardly behavior hiding beneath a certain apparent word-nerdiness was simply funny, an insight into a subculture revealing unexpected truths. But even before the ruling on Tuesday, the swirling speculation about this player's tactics means that cheating has been a hotly debated topic long before some 350 people gathered this week in a large ballroom in Orlando for Nationals. 

This game is not just a hobby. The competition ranges from 1 to 4, expert to novice. "Most of the people there study word lists and play Scrabble every single day," said Max Karten, winner of division 4 of the national championship in 2009. The top prize in that division is $2,000. In division 1 it's $10,000. There are 28 rounds of the games prior to the finals on the last day; it was during round 24 that the cheater was caught. We sought out the player through his coach a supporter and Scrabble coach, Katya Lezin, but did not hear back. 

Art Moore, who was playing the underaged player and reported him for hiding tiles, revealed in an online forum for Scrabble enthusiasts that his game began much like any other competition until he noticed something odd: "the two blanks were sitting next to each other in one of the quads on my opponent's side of the board. Knowing who I was playing this immediately drew a red flag. I'd played him the day before and won handily even though he had drawn both blanks."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Check it out: