The Intel Extreme Masters (IEM) held in Sydney recently hosts the Extreme Sports League (ESL) a global gaming event that has turned the gaming communities into e-sport powerhouses.
It has launched Australians and New Zealanders most talented players and transformed them into superhero’s of the gaming world.
It also more importantly, signifies a change in what society now views as ‘sports’.
Yet even though this futuristic idealism of what constitutes sports is still considered controversial by traditional sports viewers, (even though the money it brings in is phenomenal), the ESL brought to Sydney its first ever female league tournament to the stage.
Showcasing female league teams in a historic first of its kind on the global stage.
Well kind of.
In an epic example of ticking the boxes, this historic moment was pushed to a weird side of the stage type booth at the IEM event with little promotion or fanfare.
Its location and lack of promotion screamed of ‘didn’t give a fuck’ despite the fact that Vodafone had paid for premium partnership rights for the opening of the Women’s league in order to promote diversity and female participation in E-sports.
The reason why there is a female league, to begin with.
The female league itself is actually the answer to a solution of e-sports chauvinistic teams who truly believe that there are no female players who are good enough to be placed in their teams.
Teams who use the same argument men had in the 1800s about women getting the vote.
That shit was flawed and stupid af then as it is now.
The dick and balls swinging (if you’re blessed) between a man’s legs don’t make men better at games??? What Dr. Doolittle scientific bullshit are you trying to fake news up in E-sports?
And yet it is this reason, the almighty cock, or lack of it that excludes female gamers from being included on most e-sports team rosters.
Because as one e-sports team owner said: “it’s just a matter of fact that women aren’t as good as men at games”.
So the fact that ESL came up with a solution in the form of a females league team is a start, even if the execution was reminiscent of an old-school lan party.
But does a piss poor launch of a historic moment met with little enthusiasm from the very league that created it be worthy of the pats on the back the ESL will receive?
Because just like anything in this world if it looks like shit, smells like shit and tastes like shit…its shit.
So underwhelmingly bad was this launch that even e-sport players (the only ones in attendance due to the playoffs being scheduled prior to doors opening to the public) were shocked at the breadcrumb handouts the female league was given, expressing their disappointment after the girls had played.
Suggesting that perhaps the chauvinistic attitudes is, in fact, an institutionalized pattern of thinking embedded in the management.
Or perhaps it was some asshole who is shit at his job, whatever the reason I think we can all say we are hoping the next women’s league tournament will be given a more professional touch at its next big global event.
Charis McAwesome, co-founder and manager of hashtagme.co.nz – Charis has worked in digital for over 10yrs specialising in digital management, analytics, digital advertising, social media, digital pathways, and CRM services.
She’s also most likely to call bullshit and get Hashtag in the shit.