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    « PODCAST - #HRHappyHour 180 - Putting People First | Main | If you're thinking about crowdsourcing »
    Friday
    Apr112014

    What's bigger than the World Series? Watching people play video games

    This is a short update in a semi-regular series of 'If you are not paying attention, the world is probably a lot different than you think' department I offer up this nugget courtesy of The Atlantic - 'More People Watched the 'League of Legends' Video Game Championships that the World Series'.

    Here is the opening from The Atlantic piece, click over to read the rest if you like, but unless you are a fairly serious gamer the first paragraph is probably all you need, (or I need) to make the point:

    In October, some 15 million people tuned in to watch Major League Baseball’s World Series in the United States. But that’s nothing compared to the other big sporting tournament that took place around the same time: In late September and early October, 32 million people watched the League of Legends Season 3 World Championship, according to a new report (pdf) from SuperData, a games research company.

    Additionally, over 18,000 people (real, actual people) filled the Stapes Center in Los Angeles to watch the finals live. Also, it wasn't just the World Series total viewers that were topped by viewers of League of Legends - the NBA Finals Game 7, the average for the NCAA College Basketball Final Four, and the BCS College Football National Title game all fell short of the 32 miiion people that tuned in to the League of Legends finals.

    Why mention this story? Well, it is a Friday and in a nod to yesterday's crowdsourcing post, I kind of am out of other ideas. But seriously, I think this is an incredibly interesting story. Think about it in your own work or personal context - would you ever have thought about the growing popularity of watching other people play video games?

    It sounds so silly, right? Who would actually want to watch someone else play a video game?

    I am not really sure, but if you think about it for half a minute (and non-emotionally), watching 'real' sports like baseball or football is just as silly as watching people play video games. What is the difference really, except just that baseball and football have been around longer. But those of you who take 4 hours out of your Sunday afternoons to watch your favorite NFL team all Fall/Winter don't have the right to claim any kind of intellectual high ground over the video game fans.

    In fact, most of the people who watch the pros play video games do it to try and actually improve their own game playing ability - something that can be said for very few football or baseball fans.

    The world is not at all what we think it is at time.s I think it helps our work in HR and Talent, although I could not tell you precisely how, to keep aware of what is going on out in the big, scary world where millions of people are watching video games when you are watching football.

    Have a great weekend!

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