Esports are a big business, but don’t expect to see them in the Olympics anytime soon…
The president of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, has said that violent ‘esport’ video games are not consistent with ‘Olympic values’ and cannot therefore be considered for future Olympic Games.
Speaking at the recent Asian Games, Bach said “If you have egames where it’s about killing somebody, this cannot be brought into line with our Olympic values.”
The recent shooting at a Florida games event has probably not helped the promoters of esports.
That said, esports were an actual part of the Asian Games, for the first time, highlighting the ‘sports’ rise to prominence. They were however listed as a ‘demonstration sport.’
Organizers of the Asian Games esports event expressed sympathy for victims of the deadly shooting at a video games tournament in Florida. Both victims of the shooting were well-known players of the Madden NFL American football game. The shooter had been a participant in the tournament.
Gun Laws, not Gamers, are the issue?
The head of the Asian Electronic Sports Federation, Kenneth Fok, however made the claim that the gun laws in the USA were perhaps more to blame rather than 3d graphical models running around on a computer screen, stating “I think this is a bigger issue of gun control and access to guns.”
In July of this year, the IOC discussed the possible inclusion of esports at a forum where arguments for and against the inclusion of the nascent activity took place.
By 2020, it’s predicted esports will generate £1bn in global revenue. The sport has a global audience of around 320 million people.
“Of course every combat sport has its origins in a real fight among people, said Bach, a former gold medalist fencer. “But sport is the civilized expression about this.”