HBO debates if eSports are real or not, suggests competitors may also attend Star Trek conventions | PCGamesN

HBO debates if eSports are real or not, suggests competitors may also attend Star Trek conventions

LoL World Championship

Oh jeez, here we go again. eSports have made it onto mainstream TV, being shown as a feature segment on HBO’s Real Sports show. You’d think being on a show called Real Sports that the presenters would have already deemed competitive gaming as a real sport, but no. Instead the main question was what kind of overlap was there between pro gamers and Star Trek convention attendees. 

The opening feature section featuring League of Legends thankfully does present eSports as the exciting scene it is, but the follow up discussion is exactly what you’d expect. Former pro tennis player Mary Carillo exclaims “It’s still not a sport. It’s a game!” Fox News correspondent Bernard Goldberg demands to see the statistics on how many ‘cyber athletes’ go to Star Trek conventions. Sports Illustrated writer Frank Deford goes as far as to call the twenty million LoL spectators as crazy people. 

Yes Frank, watching people work as a team to score points is crazy. 

Hosts Bryant Gumbel and Soledad O’Brien were more enthusiastic, with O’Brien explaining the physical movements needed to pull of the strategy requiring skill, and that competitors used sports visas to travel across the world. Grumbel notes that he gets why it’s a sport. 

Not everyone’s convinced then over at Real Sports, but then again I guess they don’t need to be. Whilst we always hope that mainstream coverage will be kind to games, in this case there’s no need to be too upset over the reaction. Yeah it’s not nice to be thought of as crazy and insignificant, but no one will be breaking out the torches and rallying against us for corrupting children this time. 

Thanks, GameSpot

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Dog Pants avatarShriven avatarTim Edwards avatarAlex avatar[5punk]Anery avatarGavitron avatar
Alex Avatar
4 Years ago

The continual quest to get eSports televised or "approved" by traditional sport media has always seemed rather pointless to me. We, the fans and organisers, have shown time after time that we're capable of supporting and hosting world-class competitions on our own.

We don't need broadcast TV coverage or "personalities" sitting in glossy studios to give their nod of approval to make eSports successful, popular and profitable.

Tim Edwards Avatar
4 Years ago

This times infinitybillion.

[5punk]Anery Avatar
4 Years ago

That repeated mantra "it's a game" Sorry, what is tennis again? football? Isn't baseball called the 'Grand Old Game'?

Sure the term athlete is not really correct here, but then again you struggle to apply that term to some baseball players or american football players, how about 10 pin bowlers?

The whole point of the piece was to point and laugh.

Your Honour, I would like to treat the witness as hostile.

Dog Pants Avatar
4 Years ago

I don't think calling e-sports professionals 'cyber athletes' is helping the case. The word athlete has certain connotations of physical fitness which is no more required in LoL than it is in darts or snooker, which may be sports but certainly aren't athletic. Come to think of it, the term 'cyber' isn't that great either. If they want to be bitchy though I'd like to point out that e-sportsmen don't hire servants to stand to attention and bring them balls, as they do in the game of tennis.

Shriven Avatar
4 Years ago

Professionals sounds just fine. I assumed being called athletes gets them all sorts of lower tax rates and refunds though. Im sure its down to that.

Gavitron Avatar
4 Years ago

I don't consider gaming a sport, but then I don't consider golf, pool, bowling or croquet sports either. They are games. It's ok to be a professional gamer. "eSports" is a stupid term. It's competitive gaming, amateur or professional. That's it.