Esports Corruption: Gambling, Doping, and Global Governance
Forthcoming in the Maryland Journal of International Law
25 Pages Posted: 1 Sep 2016
Date Written: August 29, 2016
The world of esports is fast becoming a mainstream form of competition and entertainment. While there is debate over whether esports should be recognized as a sport, the emergence of competitive video gaming has seen a rise in many of the problems associated with traditional sport including: doping, gambling-related match-fixing and non-gambling related corruption. Indeed, the esports gambling market has quickly surpassed the total legal sports wagering market in the United States, including daily fantasy sports. This paper examines esports growth and the evolving integrity challenges being faced by players, tournament organizers, gamblers, sponsors, politicians, and fans. Esports, like traditional sports, faces both internal and external corruption-related threats. Internal threats facing competitive video gaming include the use of performance-enhancing drugs and match-fixing. The industry also faces external pressure from a large gambling industry that exists in both regulated and unregulated markets. The entire esports ecosystem is now facing increased scrutiny from various governments who have expressed concerns about how to regulate the games, and the vast derivative markets.
Keywords: Esports, gambling, corruption, gaming, doping, global governance, comparative law, match fixing
JEL Classification: K00, K10, K14, K33, K40, K49, L50, L59, L63, L80, L83, L86, L89, O34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation