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QUESTION

Go to any online chess server, there are lakhs playing and trying their best. These days there are even online coaches and titled players and people are ready to shed huge bucks for getting couple of hours sessions.

But given all this, i sometimes think: Why do people want to become a chess grandmaster or a titled player? What do i really get out of that - a high paid job? NO - a green card to US? - NO - free sponsorship ? PROBABLY NO - huge money? - NO (because once you become GM you have to compete with others similar to you)

Then why? why is there a craze to become a chess grandmaster, or a titled player?

If anyone has a good answer and a accurate ones, please reply with good points.

{ asked by kingsmasher1 }

ANSWER

Napoleon put it succinctly: A soldier will fight long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon.

Just a couple of points:

It is the same reason that students love getting "gold stars," and why there are so many badges on StackExchange itself. There have been volumes written on the power of peer recognition.

In particular, chess titles (for the most part) are a direct result of chess achievement. FM, IM and GM titles are all well-earned. No matter how much we might not care for a person, we know that if they have a chess title, they earned it. A GM title is the highest formal title, and it serves to inform your peers (and often yourself) that a certain level of expertise was attained.

{ answered by Ram Narasimhan }
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