On December 31, we had seven million active members on Chess.com in a single day for the first time. On January 20, we had ten million active members. Traffic on Chess.com has nearly doubled since the beginning of December, and our servers are struggling, especially during peak hours, typically around noon to 4 p.m. ET. We are very sorry for the issues; we know it's super frustrating. We are all hands on deck to address these challenges, but sadly there isn't (yet) a simple button we can press to resolve these issues.
As we noted, traffic on Chess.com has nearly doubled since the beginning of December. Here are some statistics we can share showing just how remarkable the enthusiasm for chess has been.
It's impossible to point to one reason why there is so much interest in chess so suddenly. During the chess boom in 2020 and 2021, the reasons were clear: lockdowns, Pogchamps, and The Queen's Gambit on Netflix. Right now, we believe that this rapid growth is a combination of many things driving interest and media attention for chess and combining into one big wave:
Back when chess first began booming during the COVID lockdown, our servers struggled to handle the traffic. We made a lot of investments in hardware and other improvements that allowed us to scale. When the Queen's Gambit boom happened, we experienced another massive increase in traffic, mostly without interruptions in service.