Chinese Go player gets one-year ban for using AI during national competition
By Chen Xi
Published: Mar 16, 2022 06:36 PM
The Chinese Weiqi Association on Tuesday issued a statement suspending a Chinese player from attending competitions of weiqi, more commonly known as Go overseas, for a year after he violated the “no use of AI” rules when participating in a national chess competition earlier that day.
According to the statement, Go player Liu Ruizhi used an AI program during the first round of the Chinese professional Go Championship preliminaries, and his supervisors did not fulfill their supervisory responsibilities.
The authority pronounced Liu’s opponent Yin Qu the winner of the match and decided to suspend Liu from participating in professional competitions until March 15, 2023.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, competitions have been held online and the organizing committee requires each player to have a supervisor during matches.
According to the rules of the competition, the use of AI is strictly prohibited during competitions. Players who break this rule will be banned for one year. If the player is a member of the national training team, they will be expelled from the team immediately.
Zuo Shiquan, head of the equipment manufacturing research institute under the China Center for Information Industry Development, told the Global Times on Wednesday that AI can guide a player by calculating the next step after analyzing the historical data of contestants input in advance and that this counts as cheating during a match.
“AI has rich computing resources beyond that of human beings. In front of the Go board, the two players not only compete through their skills but also their mentality. If they do not do this, the joy of playing the game is lost,” a Go expert surnamed Hu commented on the Quora-like platform Zhihu.
Liu Ruizhi was born in 1996. In 2019, he started the first stage of his career, but had not won any major matches during his career, the Xinhua News Agency reported.
The organizing committee for the championship on Tuesday night announced that the dates of preliminary rounds from March 14 to 24 and semi-finals from March 29 to 31 would be postponed due to the current COVID-19 situation in China. Matches that have been completed so far will still be counted and the dates for the unfinished games will be announced individually depending on the pandemic situation, the Beijing News reported.
The Chinese Professional Go Championship is a professional tournament with the longest history and the largest participation in China. A total of 231 people signed up for the competition – a new record – of which 194 participated in the preliminaries.