Max Fern – Esports: Explained (09/28)

In Netflix’s Esports: Explained, the creators argue that esports are not only sports but that they have certain characteristics, which have allowed them to rise rapidly in popularity relative to traditional sports over the last several decades.

According to the video, the only definitive attributes of sports are the recognition of a challenge and the keeping of score. However, what makes esports exceptional – besides the fact that competition takes place on an electronic platform – is that the technology used to play, program, and present the entertainment to consumers is typically owned by just one company. “We are basketball; we are the NBA; we are ESPN …” Chris Hopper, the proprietor of Riot Games, said.

Because I was never interested in online gaming, the whole concept of esports is very foreign to me. I don’t know if they will ever be incorporated into the Olympics, but their undeniable rise in popularity will certainly lead to a plethora of business opportunities for companies like Riot Games and others that are willing to engage this new field of computer-mediated entertainment.

3 thoughts on “Max Fern – Esports: Explained (09/28)

  1. I found your response very interesting as esports are something I grew up with (not playing, but watching thanks to my 2 older brothers). I also doubt it will ever be in the Olympics and am wondering if that is something they actually said in the Netflix clip. That seems like a big stretch given that video games are not really a universal thing. However, I do agree with the rapid growth in them, especially with the pandemic, I am not surprised that these games are increasing in popularity at a much higher rate than traditional sports.

  2. I am also pretty unfamiliar with esports, but I recognize that it holds a great audience of players and viewers. While there are already esports tournaments, I can’t imagine it being incorporated into the Olympics. However, the Olympics seem to be increasingly adding new sports– some which are not as conventional as certain sports like gymnastics or swimming. More unconventional sports recently added are chess and rock climbing. In this way, I don’t think it’s impossible for esports to be added due to its popularity and the rise of technology intersecting with reality.

    1. I think that eSports and chess are very similar in execution because they both require a lot of thinking, but little movement. With that in mind, chess far outdates the Olympics but, as you said, was only recently added to the Olympics, so I think that with time and improvement to the eSports structure (it isn’t very well defined at the moment) there is a strong possibility that it could be added to the Olympics. Alternatively, I think it could be possible that we see a sort of “virtual” Olympics, where eSports take the form of AR or VR and branch off into a new online Olympics league.

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