Along with the overwhelming majority of the world, Lichess has been watching the battle waged by Russia and Belarus towards Ukraine with shock and full dismay.
As a chess web site, commenting on geopolitical conditions is outdoors of our standard remit. But, such is the seriousness of this battle of aggression that we really feel compelled to make our place clear. Lichess has all the time advocated vocally for freedom, openness and mutual collaboration. We will all the time promote and defend these values towards those that promote subjugation, opacity, and hostility.
The actions of the Russian and Belarusian governments have been so globally damaging, and so broadly felt, that even the chess group should adjust to varied sanctions and actions each governmental and personal. This is unprecedented for all of us.
We stand in resolute solidarity with the folks of Ukraine. We are engaged on proactive steps we are able to take to substantively and tangibly enhance the scenario for the battle victims. We could have an replace on this shortly.
We additionally respect the various courageous folks of Russia and Belarus who condemned or have protested their authorities’s actions – together with these from throughout the chess group – regardless of the danger to their very own private security.
Following FIDE’s extraordinary assembly of their council, Lichess may also not present any Russian or Belarusian flags or play their anthems in official broadcasts and media from official FIDE occasions.
Further to this, following motion and sanctions towards Russia, together with from our residence nation of France, Lichess has come to the next conclusions:
- From right this moment (Wednesday ninth March 2022), customers with a public and vocal jingoistic pro-war place will not be eligible to obtain prize cash from official Lichess occasions.
- Lichess is not going to supply any official assist for occasions held by the Chess Federations of Russia or Belarus, though it is not going to ban these federations from the positioning.
- Lichess could select to not function, broadcast, or cowl complete occasions or elements of an occasion the place a participant or an official with a public and vocal jingoistic pro-war place is collaborating.
- All customers are reminded that Lichess has the precise to proactively take away entry to sure providers or options of our web site from customers who, at our sole discretion, violate our Terms of Service (ToS). This consists of the glorification of terrorism, sharing extremist, bigoted, or racist views, and promotion of genocide / battle crimes. This shouldn’t have any influence on the overwhelming majority of our customers, from any nation, who comply with the Community Guidelines inside our ToS.
- Following worldwide sanctions on varied banks and the SWIFT community, we can not assure with the ability to remit prize cash to anybody with a Russian or Belarusian checking account, even when it makes use of international intermediaries. Contact us if this happens, and we’ll do our greatest to remit any prize cash as long as the person is eligible to obtain it.
- Lichess will not block or ban anybody with a Russian or Belarusian IP tackle. Whilst Russia muzzles press freedoms and tries to close itself off from the remainder of the world, we imagine chess to be inclusive, and that needlessly isolating folks from the remainder of the digital world will solely foment echo chambers. In some small approach, Lichess can assist forestall this from occurring.
- Lichess will not take away Russian or Belarusian flags from person profiles. Russia and Belarus exist as nations, and eradicating their flag doesn’t change that. There are additionally many Russians and Belarusians who disagree with the battle and are protesting it, whose bravery we respect, however by nationality nonetheless determine as Russian and Belarusian.
Lichess is actively monitoring this creating scenario, together with frequently reviewing worldwide sanctions. It is especially fluid and the above conclusions could change based mostly on new info, authorities recommendation, or legal guidelines.