IOC: Talk of eSports in Olympic Games is premature
Updated 08:28, 12-Dec-2018
Any discussion to include eSports as a medal event at the Olympic Games is premature because of the way the gaming industry is structured, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said on Saturday.
ESports, the competitive side of electronic gaming, boasts an estimated 250 million players worldwide in a growing market worth about a billion dollars a year.
The Olympic body said uncertainties in the industry remained as far as any potential Olympic inclusion was concerned.
"Some e-games are not compatible with the Olympic values and therefore cooperation with them is excluded," the IOC said following an Olympic Summit of stakeholders in Lausanne.
ESport demonstration at Asian Games in Jakarta, August 29, 2018. /VCG Photo

ESport demonstration at Asian Games in Jakarta, August 29, 2018. /VCG Photo

It also noted that the industry was changing rapidly, while also being fragmented with competition between major commercial operators.
"The industry is commercially driven, while on the other hand, the sports movement is values-based," the IOC said.
However, IOC did encourage accelerated cooperation with eSports simulation games "to explore the potential benefits and applications of the electronic and virtual versions of their sports."
The IOC recognized eSports as a sports activity last year and it will be a medal event at the 2022 Asian Games.
It made its major multi-sport event debut as a demonstration sport at this year's Asian Games in Jakarta.
Source(s): Reuters