eSports, gaming, gamers, sports, salaries, demographics, audience, viewership


Sports Management | Sports Sciences


John Gabrosek


Through technology advancements of the past half-century, a new genre of sports known as fiesportsfl has come to fruition. In esports, otherwise known as fielectronic sports,fl professional gamers, not associated with professional athletes, play multiplayer (and occasionally single player) video games as part of a competition to be spectated. The research in this paper strives to draw comparisons between the rising esports industry and the already-established traditional sports industry. Findings reveal that there are many similarities and differences in reference to home-field advantages, demographics, impact of player diversity, and recent viewership as influenced by the coronavirus. While a home-field advantage is present in traditional sports, it is not recognizable in esports. Demographics between the two industries experience a significant gender gap, but not as much of an age gap as may be generally believed. Impacts of diversity between the industries reveal that certain barriers are harmful to team performance (lack of spoken language harmony, for example), but other differences are seen as helpful. Changes in viewership due to the pandemic appear to have affected traditional sports more so than esports.