Major League Gaming (MLG) president, Mike Sepso, believes that eSports has a major advantage over other professional sports – rather than relying on traditional broadcasting, eSports lives in the internet age.
As he explains:
“People under 24 don’t have cable. If you sell your rights to ESPN and Fox and CBS and ABC and NBC, how are you going to reach 24-and-younger viewers?” Sepso explained. “You can’t get five million people to tune in for three hours on television, and the reality is 80 percent of our audience doesn’t have a cable subscription, so how are they going to watch? Why force the audience to go somewhere that’s not native to them, right? Our sport happens on the internet. We should broadcast it on the internet.”
Sepso predicts that within five years, if eSports continues to grow at this rate (which seems reasonable to assume), MLG will be somewhere between baseball and NASCAR in popularity – in ten years he predicts it will be as popular as NFL (American football). So, maybe in a few years time we’ll see an E3 presentation where Geoff can be just as confused about who the eSports pros are as he is about the sports heroes paraded on stage. (Ed’s note: He already is)
What about South Africa? Do you think eSports will garner the same level of popularity as rugby or cricket? Do you think high schools will start having eSports teams for extra-murals? Hmm, now I’m wondering if they’ll do gender segregation – the girls teams will play LoL while the boys play Dota 2?