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A leading UK esports organisation.

What are eSports?

It’s no lie that the word esports comes with implications, be them good or not. It would appear that the general unassuming public don’t know much about it other than it having something to do with video gaming. Why don’t we delve into the world of the mass media trying to get a grasp on what esports is and why they’re so bad at it.

The typo in the title was no mistake – If you want a bit of fun, try reading this BBC article aptly titled Guide: What are eSports? This fine piece of literature brings with it some brilliant insight such as ‘“eSports” is simply the short name for electronic sports.’ Whether you’re a veteran of the scene or you played Tetris once, let’s get one thing straight; ‘Esports is a noun and should be treated as such. If a team chooses to use the phrase “eSports” or “e-sports” in their name, then that’s their choice. Don’t let Google search fool you – just because esports isn’t a traditional pastime, doesn’t mean we get to defy the basic rules of English.

In the article Sports vs Esports, I compared esports to Formula One. Both are atypical forms of sports (F1 even host their own esports tournaments). If you don’t understand esports, just think of it as the new F1, but with a lower death toll and less speed involved.

Video games have always been a taboo ever since their introduction to society. Games like Grand Theft Auto always seem to find controversy within politics and households alike. Perhaps it is because video games traditionally appeal to the younger demographic who are without jobs and have some disposable income – and esports may be seen as the pinnacle of ‘lazy millennials’. Of course, this is far from the truth – Esports organisations work hard to get where they are, with hours of time put into learning the smallest of in game skills to perfect their abilities. The top players tour the globe and often live together, similarly to other sports teams. Esports isn’t about playing video games, it’s about winning and competing.

While we’re on the subject of the media, can we get over this idea that video games make people violent? You’ll see this excuse thrown around a lot as to why esports can’t possibly be recognised as a genuine sport or audience activity. It’s been proven countless times that video games don’t make people violent (people would flame in CSGO even if it had no firearms), so let’s just put this fallacy in the past and move on.

With big sponsors lending their name to esports brands and events, the scene is gaining more reputation and standing with the older generation who seemingly refuse to accept the notion of video games being anything but distractions for kids. Perhaps in ten years, esports will be as familiar as football on the big screen, but for now, we’ll have to settle for big news agencies trying to get customers to buy newspapers instead of playing those retched shooters.