Is Gaming Changing Traditional Sporting?

Is Gaming Changing Traditional Sporting?

Attitudes toward gaming have changed as a whole as some of the biggest platforms like mobile have become much more represented with a growing audience and demographic away from what would be considered the ‘traditional’ audience – particularly over the past year as many have turned to gaming as their primary form of entertainment as more familiar options with the likes of non uk casinos have become amongst the most represented – but the other change has come with esports as numbers for the biggest events are starting to either match or surpass the biggest traditional sporting events in the world.

There has been a growing market in traditional sporting esports titles too with names like FIFA being directly supported and growing an audience for those who may not have been otherwise interested in the other big gaming events – the successes have largely come through broadcasting options through platforms like Twitch which enable viewers to tune in for free to the big events and to the big names with opportunities to directly interact with the stars of the sports – and this has drawn links to many of the biggest traditional sporting events in the world where particularly over the past year many have relied on social media platforms in order to have a more direct connection with their fans, with some even citing the growing gaming culture around esports as a reason why they’ve made the adjustment as they’ve seen some of the biggest esports stars rise in fandom and become household names, and just how much impact they’re able to have away from even big events just by their online twitch presence.

There are also the big broadcasting deals to consider too – many in major sporting are set to expire over the next few years with different online platforms being the target and online gaming being a leader in the industry – could major traditional sporting follow in the same footsteps as the big gaming options too? It’s unlikely they’ll ever move to a free platform like Twitch, and some have already been represented on platforms like Amazon Prime, but given many users are starting to move away from the reliance on using too many different paid subscription service, this could ultimately harm more than helps – taking the UK Premier League as a prime example, currently being represented on Sky Sports, BT Sports, and Amazon Prime – if too many major sporting options move in a similar fashion to be represented across multiple platforms, there may be a smaller audience willing to pay for all of these services, and with alternatives like free streaming out there already, may lead many to question why a similar path isn’t followed.

Frances Bailey

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