Digital Sport London: Don’t miss our March event on Esports

This month, esports is our main topic of conversation around the Digital Sport watercooler.

It is a large area to cover, comprising numerous different titles which essentially act as different sports. It involves the growth of the sector, the investment from advertising and sponsorship and the interest from established sports teams, leagues and personalities. It is continually going places.

But up for discussion is always its relationship to sport as we know it. Far from being simply a question of whether esports should be counted as ‘sport’ at all, there is also a question of whether or not the simulation element of esports should exist at all.

Titles like Counter Strike: Global Offensive and League of Legends have little or no real-world equivalent – thank God – whereas FIFA, NBA and Formula 1 certainly do. There’s a huge difference, then, in sitting down to watch teams do battle on these pure esports as opposed to the sim varieties. After all, you can go watch a real football match instead of the FIFA 18 version.

And yet there has been huge interest in the sim sports, certainly among the traditional sporting world at present. There are natural connections between Premier League teams and EA Sports’ FIFA, for example, and this goes beyond just the top end of the esports ladder: it has to do with participation in esports and the fact that top clubs know that their fans often play. Getting involved with esports is a way of reaching their fans on that platform and engaging with them there.

This year is a big year for sim sports, then. We’ve already seen the Global eLeague in UK/Europe on Goal.com, the eMLS announcement, F1 competition tested towards the end of 2017, the A-League eLeague, NBA2K qualifiers started and NASCAR getting involved.

That’s why March’s Digital Sport London event at Pinsent Masons in central London will focus on sim sports, their recent boom and the relation they bear to sport as we know it. Speakers will be confirmed in the lead-up to the day, but the two panel discussions will be as follows. “Path to Pro: The Importance of Grassroots Esports” and “Bridging the gap: Is Esports the answer to ‘traditional’ sports Gen Z problem?”

It promises to be an enlightening event on one of the emerging areas of the digital sporting landscape, and whether you’re keen on the space and want to listen to other experts in the industry share their wisdom and chat about the issues, or whether you’re still trying to get your head around this brave new world, this isn’t one to miss. Make sure you grab your tickets here.

See you there!

About author

Chris McMullan
Chris McMullan 660 posts

Chris is a sports journalist and editor of Digital Sport - follow him on Twitter @CJMcMullan_

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