Should esports be regarded as real sports?

Esports organization Cloud9 is one of the most famous and successful esports groups in America.

Esports organization Cloud9 is one of the most famous and successful esports groups in America.

Connor MacDougall, Staff Reporter

Since the emergence of online video games in the early 2000s, the popularity of esports has risen up to become one of the most well liked competitions in the modern era. As professional gamers turn into celebrities to their millions of viewers, other ask an important question about the idea of esports: are they actually real sports?

Many people have different views on how to classify a sport. The Oxford Dictionary defines a sport as, “an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment.” With this in mind, it would be hard to label esports as an actual sport because the competitors spend their time sitting in chairs and using controllers or a keyboard and mouse. Others argue that it’s unfair to not give esports this label because other “sports,” such as table tennis and dart throwing, require a similar level of physical activity and rely mostly on one’s mind and perception.

Recently, there has been an increase of those who advocate for the inclusion of esports in the Olympic Games. While there is no set events for the 2024 Olympics related to gaming, the Olympics committee admitted that it’s not out of the question.

“There is some time to look at it, to interact, to engage. I don’t want to say ‘no’ from the beginning,” says Tony Estanguet, co-president of the 2024 Olympics.

Sophomore Dylan Trivelli advocates for its inclusion, saying, “Yeah, it takes skill that is mental and physical in order to compete with each other.”

Personally, I believe a sport requires physical ability in some way, whether it be throwing a football of swinging a golf club. Because of this, I cannot advocate for the inclusion of esports in the world of “real” sports, like basketball or soccer. When you compare esports to the other sports in the Olympics that ask a great deal of their players in physicality, it’s hard to understand why some believe it would make sense to include it in a competition known for its physical demands. I’m not denouncing esports; in fact I’m glad that they’re growing in popularity. But let’s slow down before we jump to give it unnecessary titles.