“For the three decades after the title was formally introduced in 1950, the grandmaster was a rare species … To pursue its goal of having at least one grandmaster in each country, FIDE relaxed its requirements. That change made the label more accessible, but also less exclusive: Nearly 2,000 players have become grandmasters since 1950. Gradually, the label ceased being a ticket to a great future in chess. Young players — and their often obsessive parents — needed something to set them apart. The title of the youngest grandmaster turned into one such springboard.” NYT (free gift article for NextDraft readers): The Dark Side of Chess: Payoffs, Points and 12-Year-Old Grandmasters.