The Rise of the Cyber AthletesJclarke
Growing exponentially, global, packing stadiums, professional video gamers, the extraordinary rise of the Cyber Athletes and eSports.
If you are quick you can catch on BBC iPlayer ‘The Rise of the Cyber Athletes’, a look at eSports and how with the help of streaming sites like Twitch bring millions of viewers to watch online and ten’s of thousands to venues around the world. The Cyber Athlete much parodied as being a couch potato is no longer and with expected earnings of £200,000 a year for the best, they are professional athletes, in the gym, healthy diet and lightning quick reaction speeds not only on a controller, but their brains too to match any track athlete.
It’s a sport, yes a sport, and it is blind siding traditional sports and broadcasters. Through the medium of Twitch, a games live streaming channel found on mobile devices, Xbox, online, a new generation is creating a mass fan base to rival and overhaul many traditional sports teams and their sports. Twitch to date has 43 million subscribers, with up to 1-7 million viewing at the same time global events. That’s larger than Sky Sports Premier League viewership at times, so you see why those enlightened youth, tech and entertainment brands are interested, with those getting in early the most likely to win in their association with a varied team and individual sport that’s growing exponentially each year.
The BBC programme is a great beginners insight into this brave new world. With there being calls for eSports to be added into the Olympics the thought of what sport is and the power of the audiences it generates will be a big and interesting story this year.
If you miss it on iPlayer it’s also here on YouTube http://youtu.be/5sskRcsbUpQ