ESL UK co-managing director Spike Laurie has hit out at the idea of a governing body trying to regulate eSports from outside the scene.
In an eSports Leaders Report dated September 2016, within a section mentioning South Korea’s International eSports Federation (IeSF) he said: “I actually just got back from Shanghai where I was talking to the International eSports Federation, but I certainly don’t have an IeSF badge that I wear.
“I’m not convinced there should be one governing body. I think the only people who are convinced there should be a governing body are those who are lining themselves up to be a governing body.
“There is a lot of gravy swilling around once you get to the governing body level of things. I think they’re organisations of the past and I don’t think within a digital world there’s any room for organisations or bureaucracy like that.
“I actually think it’s a danger to eSports.”
While eSports News UK understands Spike’s comments were made a few months back (and have only been published now), they come after WESA was formed earlier this year and ESL is a part of that. However, that is something offering regulation from inside the eSports scene.
eSports News UK understands that Spike is against regulation from outside the eSports industry through third-parties who do not understand competitive gaming.
Laurie previously told MCV: “Regulation is not required. The industry itself is setting best practice and that’s really important because in this instance, a hands-off approach is working in terms of regulation. The industry is self-regulating and doing what’s best for eSports and what’s best for the players.”
Gfinity CEO Neville Upton did add within that article that while it has its own rules, he did say a local body would be a good thing.
“We have our own rule set for each game,” he said. “We have our Gfinity Code of Conduct. We have very high standards and rigorous checks with our online anti-cheat systems. We have over 100 admins and they are very well trained so they can properly adjudicate on games. At the moment we’re just building our own standards. We’d like to share those with other tournament operators.
“We probably need a UK body and an international body where we can all put in our ideas, that way you have someone independently taking all those pooled ideas and making decisions. Let’s hope we can get to a commonality over time.”
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
As a long-time gamer having first picked up the NES controller in the late ’80s, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Association up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and as an esports consultant helping brands and businesses better understand the industry.