Sweden Refuses To Recognize Esports as an Official Sport
You ever heard of The International?
Oh no biggie, it just basically the biggest, most sought after competition in e-sports ever.
Players compete in an online multi-player game called Dota 2, which by itself, has an intriguing backstory.
But in short, Dota, also known as Defense of the Ancients, was actually a spin-off created by fans of Warcraft III.
For the non-esports oriented, you basically control a character who has different abilities around a map to hunt other players and conquer their towers.
Since its inception, it definitely has gotten a lot more complicated than that.
Now, players compete at an elite level, strategizing in team plays, over millions of dollars of prize money, with milliseconds separating victory and defeat.
Remember you mum yelling at you to stop playing computer games as it will not make you money?
Despite the leaps and bounds e-sports has made over the decades, this recent news really boggles my mind.
“Swedish Sports Federation voted against considering esports an official sport, meaning The International would no longer be considered an “elite sporting event,” a categorization necessary in order to get visa exemptions for its competing participants.
While Valve appealed the decision to the Swedish Minister of the Interior, the application was “immediately denied.” Valve is now forced to relocate the tournament to another location within the EU.”
This is not some indie game played by hundreds, this is The international, an event so coveted and loved, millions await for it with bated breath each year.
“The 10th The International championships were originally scheduled for August 5 to 15 in Stockholm, with a prize pool of over $40 million USD.”
Think about all the potential marketing, advertising, attention and dollars Sweden just lost.
Think about the impact they could have made.
Think about how the Swedes would feel years later when they realized they passed on being a part of history.
Don’t let regulations and archaic rules stop you from being part of such a historic event.
Always keep and open mind and be ready for anything.
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