78 thoughts on “Should League of Legends Be a High School Sport? | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios

  • October 18, 2014 at 6:23 pm
    Permalink

    This is yet another example of "filter bubbles". Trying to label things that don't need to be labeled. High schools are already full of competitive players in a range of sports and/or e-sports with no support from institutions. Yesterday I saw this high school kid walk up to another high school kid in a restaurant introduce himself and asked him what he was into athletically. Turns out he was trying to recruit other kids for his football game in the park. That is dedication. The truth is high schools don't support children they support parents by babysitting their kids and making them learn and play according to their definition. We need to support children in what they are into without judgement.

    Reply
  • October 18, 2014 at 10:16 pm
    Permalink

    On the topic of 'real' sport or not, I don't think it's important to be prescriptive but I do think that people should make up their own mind based on a good idea of what e-sports involve. Maybe that requires us to make up some e-sport like activities to inform. A game of chess but you can't touch the pieces and must enter your moves by playing darts with the moves encoded into the dartboard. If you think that's a sport then you should probably also think of StarCraft 2 as a sport.

    As for including it in education, I don't think a lot of kids need to be pushed to take part in computer games as part of a sports education; Minecraft isn't a sport but also has a place in schools so I don't think getting sports classification is key to that – just show the activity is worth including in an educational environment. At the high end, with things like visas, then there is a clear need to enable international competitive play and that may also include sports scholarships, so for that purpose I think you do need to push for sports or sports-equivalent recognition.

    Reply
  • October 19, 2014 at 2:22 am
    Permalink

    E sports are definitely a sport in the sense, but the reason schools and college won't put it in their programs is because it is only in forces the idea that games are addictive and will steal children from their lives. However, the same can be said for real sports, since they cause injuries that can not only hurt children physical, but emotionally. My cousin can't even play a real down of football now because he got two concussions. TWO!!!! and yet they shun a game where true team work and coordination is shunned. The best we can hope for is a club for high schools. In fact, people in the First Robotics League can find real jobs that CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!!!!!! This is why I hate football, we will never change the idea of sport, but we will continue sending children to careers that may never pick-up, or will ruin their life.

    Reply
  • October 19, 2014 at 5:16 am
    Permalink

    Esports arent sports, they are Esports.

    Reply
  • October 19, 2014 at 4:28 pm
    Permalink

    I don't care either way, but the term "esport" makes me cringe. Reminds me of the time of the .com bubble and all the awful buzzwords around that time.

    Reply
  • October 19, 2014 at 11:41 pm
    Permalink

    Are E-Sports actually sports? By almost any official definition, no. The O.E.D definition requires physical exertion. There are other words for such things, like "competitions." The same is true for the World Series of Poker, by the way.

    Then, why do they call the community "E-Sports?" Probably because the meta of professional gaming very closely resembles the meta of traditional sports. Large fan-based organized events that pit teams against one another (like tournaments, e.g. The International 14 for Dota 2) are an example of this. Also, fan affiliation with a given team or player, heated debate over team strategies, projecting outcomes of various tournaments throughout the season, and statistical tracking of player and team performance are almost what defines the meta of a sport. These are also driving forces of the professional gaming community. However, it is difficult to determine whether the gaming community behaves this way due to the nature of the game in itself, or because the game (or the community) was intentionally designed to resemble traditional sports. Either way, this resemblance between the communities (and the desire to legitimize professional gaming) is almost assuredly why the term E-Sports has become so popularized.

    Should High Schools and Universities offer gaming scholarships?  Not without public license to use the gaming software and hardware. As the video states, big problems arise when the sport itself is privatized in a major way. Besides making long-term collegiate programs problematic, there is also an enormous barrier to entry for gaming, financially speaking. It costs nothing whatsoever to play baseball. All you really need is a stick and a rock (as dangerous as that would be). You need a tin can and two dumpsters to play soccer. Even to play them more officially, you can join a local youth sports team for virtually nothing; they'll supply the equipment and competition space for you.

    By contrast, to play Dota 2 professionally, you need a high-speed internet connection, a PC with a decent graphics card, a decent monitor, a mouse, and a keyboard as a minimum. That would run you at least $500 up front, plus at least $30 a month for the internet, plus the increase in cost to your power bill each month for running all of that equipment. That is a ton of money year-over-year. The cost of the game itself (which in this case is actually zero) isn't even relevant any more compared to all the other costs. It would be unrealistic to expect those most in need of athletic scholarships (those who cannot pay for college or university otherwise) to afford such things.

    So, what are you saying? Such scholarships would be disenfranchising to the poor, who need those scholarships more than anyone else. If there were Youth Gaming Leagues where the equipment, games, and continual costs were provided for free (or at a greatly reduced cost), that would be a different story. But I know of no such leagues. Perhaps there should be some.

    Reply
  • October 20, 2014 at 7:14 am
    Permalink

    This is a very interesting debate, but it would be like saying schools should start funding Super Smash Brothers, Street Fighter, and Yu-Gi-Oh, which have huge competitive scenes themselves, same with Magic: The Gathering and the Pokémon TCG/Video Games (all of the above I have competitive interests and experience in) but they don't have the same excitement felt entirely at a sports stadium (or televised and live sports, however you roll), felt in both the audience and the athletes themselves. But, my own digressions aside, this being my own opinion and the like, its just something that is an open-ended topic that needs meaningful input from all sides and points of view. Which being said, points of view/reference points, will differ from each other, being minute or entirely, even on the same generic sides of the argument.

    Reply
  • October 20, 2014 at 11:38 am
    Permalink

    I think D&D and Esports should hold the same weight as normal Sports because in order to be any good you must dedicate the same level of time and passion. What do you think?

    Reply
  • October 20, 2014 at 1:20 pm
    Permalink

    The answer is no I think .But I think it deserves a place along side chess .If you convert teamwork oriented video games into something like at 5:47 ,then it is a sport .

    Reply
  • October 20, 2014 at 1:50 pm
    Permalink

    I know that universities and colleges can have any club that they have enough members for; there should be no problem there, but high schools would pose more of a problem.

    High Schools require a teacher sponsor for extracurricular clubs and parents that object to such a club could potentially interfere with administrative approval.

    Reply
  • October 20, 2014 at 5:43 pm
    Permalink

    Sure? Why not?

    Reply
  • October 20, 2014 at 11:06 pm
    Permalink

    The definition of sport is "an activity that requires physical extortion" is sitting at you laptop playing a game " Physically demanding

    Reply
  • October 21, 2014 at 5:46 am
    Permalink

    Two corrections:

    @ 2:00 , sports USUALLY are physical. Not always, not a requirement. Reread the first sentence of the Wikipedia article.

    @ 2:13 , Irrelevant. Chess is a sport, also officially recognized as a sport by the International Olympic Committee.

    Reply
  • October 21, 2014 at 9:27 am
    Permalink

    Having a high school esport club would've been absolutely amazing.

    Reply
  • October 21, 2014 at 5:21 pm
    Permalink

    I think people need to start by accepting it as a competition that is worthy of play. Even if they won't call it a sport they should support it for scholorships and what naught because then people like me who are neither physically skilled and wasn't able to care enough to spend 8 hours a night on each paper in high school. I was pretty average, but if I could get a scholarship for games 1. my parents would have supported it instead of constantly being worried it would just ruin me 2. I could be going to a lot nicer college now, 3. It'd like to have a bit more importance and having high school esports to get me into the big leagues would have been so great.

    Reply
  • October 21, 2014 at 7:59 pm
    Permalink

    Why do people want E-Sports to be called Sports, they arent called 'E'-Sports for no reason. There's always going to be a huge part of this world disliking E-Sports, so why not just have fun watching this just get bigger and bigger instead of pushing our will to it becoming an official sport? I bet that within 5 years there will be e-sports tv-channels, just look at the progress between our first four world championships!

    Reply
  • October 21, 2014 at 8:44 pm
    Permalink

    Well LOL is a MOBA its like saying if America stopped playing football and we needed something else we started playing Australian football which is different but the same concept. Thus if LOL died there would still be games of the same genre with the same basic mechanics like Dota2.

    Reply
  • October 22, 2014 at 12:06 am
    Permalink

    To be honest, I would not just Not add gaming to the list of sports, but even pick some stuff out of it. Like chess. Competitive gaming is not a sport. It might be equal in some field, but not the same

    Reply
  • October 22, 2014 at 6:17 am
    Permalink

    I think esport should be accepted in all high schools, problem is most parents are against video games… like my mom. 🙁

    In most cases parents are the ones who sent their kids to school for a better future and have a very high expectations for them. They play a special role as a community of having the part to decide whats good for their children wether its homework, grades, teachers, activities, whatever. One thing I know damn well as an A+ Student is that most parents despise Video Games. They see it as a distraction & laziness to a person's mind. If you notice most competitor athletes & smartass students in high school thrive to succeed their goals under (sadly) parent pressure. I would like to see how this plays out when esport is officially a sport to the education institution.
    But who knows, there are some parents who do accept video games in the house. Later on us next generation will be taking the role as parents and may accept video games for the community and be less strict about it, hell I'd be an awesome dad lol. Oh hey that should be your next video "Will there me more gamer parents in the future?"

    Reply
  • October 22, 2014 at 7:06 pm
    Permalink

    imagine though having your coach make you read the patch notes, and go through pick-ban priorities and shit like nah son fuck that. also school committees be like "rito pls" 

    Reply
  • October 23, 2014 at 1:17 am
    Permalink

    I greatly dislike sports and I am an avid gamer, but I thing E-Sports should be a separate thing from sports. I think it would be cool if schools support E-Sports but It seems silly to just call them sports. I'm not sure exactly how to say what I want to say

    Reply
  • October 23, 2014 at 7:49 am
    Permalink

    Only 1% of all League players are actually good and professional.The Majority don't even have teams and just play for fun and now nothing about the games tactics. You wouldn't call a dude that kicks a football against a wall for 1 hr an athlete…

    Reply
  • October 23, 2014 at 2:59 pm
    Permalink

    They could switch to Dota if riot goes belly up

    Reply
  • October 24, 2014 at 1:18 pm
    Permalink

    I think the portal gun would be a sweet addition to the décor.

    Reply
  • October 24, 2014 at 9:22 pm
    Permalink

    no lets not have esports in are schools you do not need a government or coach are homework to get good at a video  game

    Reply
  • October 24, 2014 at 10:38 pm
    Permalink

    please do one about games in the class room. Along with literature.

    Reply
  • October 25, 2014 at 12:42 am
    Permalink

    My high school already has a LoL club (which is how I got into the game) 😀

    Anyway, I think that, if people want to watch other people compete, it should be considered a sport.

    Reply
  • October 25, 2014 at 3:08 am
    Permalink

    why does everyone always recognize LoL but not DotA?!

    Reply
  • October 25, 2014 at 7:31 am
    Permalink

    But there is still the fact that you cannot be a professional gymnast, footballer oder basketballer if you start too late – it's just nearly impossible. That isn't given in e-sports. You do not need decades of training just to play professionally, you can learn it relatively easy because it focuses mainly on intelligence and mental skills. Physical sports have more aspects to it: coordination, mental abilities, strength, stamina, specific dexerity etc…skills that need decades to master.

    Reply
  • October 26, 2014 at 4:56 pm
    Permalink

    They aren't sports, they are E-sports, so don't call them sports, call them E-sports.

    Reply
  • October 27, 2014 at 5:52 pm
    Permalink

    I don't think it matters if pro-gaming is considered a sport or not, because all that matters is that it can and will draw in massive amounts of people, meaning it's a huge potential market waiting to be exploited.
    Once it's exploited, it'll be whatever makes the most money. 

    Reply
  • October 28, 2014 at 2:19 am
    Permalink

    "Schools that do better in sports do better on standardized tests." That may be true, but it DOES NOT mean that sports cause better test scores. Correlation does not equal causation. Perhaps in higher-income towns, more students get involved in sports rather than gangs, and they have better coaches, so sports teams are better. With more income comes more education funds, and therefore better schools, and better test scores. I'm not saying it's definite, but "Schools that do better in sports do better on standardized tests." is a correlation, but it does NOT demonstrate a causal relationship.

    Reply
  • October 30, 2014 at 12:03 am
    Permalink

    It would be pretty interesting if high schools started to have professional gaming teams. That would have so much backlash from parents, though … and also, people would argue about League of Legends vs DotA 2 vs HoN etc.

    Reply
  • November 1, 2014 at 3:17 pm
    Permalink

    Esports gets larger and larger each year and I do think that soon some school will look at video games as an in school sport but as was pointed out video games are owned by companies and if that company goes out of business or changes the game the school could lose a hole team but they may be a way around this, instead of training the team for a specific game you focus them on a specific type of game like fps,rts, or moba , it could work and it helps broaden the spectrum of games that are played.  

    Reply
  • November 4, 2014 at 11:23 pm
    Permalink

    YES!!!

    Reply
  • November 8, 2014 at 9:03 am
    Permalink

    No, Dota 2 should be. Requires more knowledge to be learned and has a higher level of complexity to it. Plus the meta-game isn't rigid.

    Reply
  • November 11, 2014 at 11:15 pm
    Permalink

    In my opinion the socially acceptable use of "sport" being limited to only include those activities that require high physical ability is born of a position of privilege. There are those among us for whom full-contact physical activities or running long distances represent not only an insurmountable difficulty but can be life threatening. Including digital assisted interactive sports in the general socially accepted category of "sport" would go a long way to equalizing the "playing field".

    Reply
  • November 19, 2014 at 2:49 am
    Permalink

    The way I see it rappers fall in the same category as chess. Which I'd like to point out do have a lot in common with professional sports. Including but not limited to scholarships national and international competitions with monetary rewards. And to various degrees highschool programs. The main reason for the difference in highschool support of the programs is demographics.

    Reply
  • November 19, 2014 at 7:27 pm
    Permalink

    The fact that games like LoL are pieces of software owned by companies ruins this whole debate for me. It can not be an institutionalized sport in schools in my eyes for this reason. I don't think athleticism is necessary for a sport, though.

    Reply
  • November 19, 2014 at 8:35 pm
    Permalink

    I have great respect for "e-athletes". However the simple fact is that calling an e-sport the same thing as a regular sport doesn't make any sense. That physical component that is sorta being swept under the carpet here, is actually pretty important.

    Calling Quake an E-Sport is about the same as calling piano playing a sport. Its not team-based, but theres plenty of non-team based sports. Both involve a great deal of skill, competition, dexterity, focus, and hard work to excel at. Defining E-Sports as sports requires us to change the definition of sport to include it. As a result we end up including a lot of different things as sport because of the change in definition.

    I'm not saying anything bad about E-Sports. It exists as its own set of skills and is very impressive to witness. However, for the reasons that I just highlighted, I wouldn't call them sports.

    Reply
  • December 6, 2014 at 4:45 pm
    Permalink

    I think that it should be considered a sport. Most people look down on it as a sport and think oh yeah it is just a video game. But to those people who actually play the game and take the time to watch and understand the competitive scene then they understand where I am coming from. But some people just wont care to look further than just video game and I think that we just have to come to accept that. 

    Reply
  • December 6, 2014 at 4:50 pm
    Permalink

    If a kid where to tell there parents I made it onto the football team the parents would be happy. But if a kid was to tell there parents I made it onto the league of legends team at my school. (knowing that these parents dont know much about the game at all and think it is just a video game) These parents would most say ok it is good that you got onto the league team but it is only a video game and you should spend more time on school and not playing video games. But is the cast of getting onto the football team would be really happy. But most parents coming from an older generation will not come to understand a game becoming a sport. 

    Reply
  • December 10, 2014 at 8:02 am
    Permalink

    ITT: 13 year-old kids who think Bronze 3 in League qualifies them to talk about e-sports.

    Reply
  • December 18, 2014 at 2:41 am
    Permalink

    lol poker is a sport so why not

    Reply
  • December 23, 2014 at 9:42 pm
    Permalink

    It should still be a "High School level competitive game" as long as there is no ground for cheating,or they can organize separate game for hackers  .
    Just like Chess is.

    Reply
  • December 24, 2014 at 1:08 am
    Permalink

    YES OF COURSE I WILL GET ALL A'S

    Reply
  • December 27, 2014 at 7:51 am
    Permalink

    I tend to think of sports in two categories;
    Physical sports: Games with a heavier emphasis on physical abilities (American Football, Hockey, Basketball, etc)
    Mental sports: Games with a heavier emphasis on mental abilities (Chess, Go, League of Legends, Street Fighter, etc)
    Not to say physical sports aren't mentally strenuous (coming up with plays, adapting on the go, etc) but I feel their power comes from their physicality whereas the power of Chess and such comes from the Mental aspect, if that makes sense.
    Of course, I don't really follow sports, so this distinction could be bullshit.

    Reply
  • January 6, 2015 at 2:33 am
    Permalink

    esport=sport-physicality

    Reply
  • January 7, 2015 at 5:30 am
    Permalink

    In my school there is a league of legends club

    Reply
  • January 11, 2015 at 5:15 pm
    Permalink

    LoL sucks, now CoD is an Esport. find it funny how espn figureheads say esports aren't sports but will happily take money from you in the form of video games

    Reply
  • January 14, 2015 at 12:29 pm
    Permalink

    I actually agree to esports they seem even better than rugby where you can break your arm

    Reply
  • January 15, 2015 at 7:50 am
    Permalink

    Yes, please do

    Reply
  • January 17, 2015 at 5:59 am
    Permalink

    Honestly in order to justify putting up esports they have to include all the big games for esports cod lol csgo and halo(to a small extent)

    Reply
  • January 19, 2015 at 10:00 am
    Permalink

    NBA's Jeremy lin plays Dota 2

    Reply
  • January 23, 2015 at 12:35 pm
    Permalink

    First 1k like

    Reply
  • January 23, 2015 at 3:20 pm
    Permalink

    As an  audience member, it may be about the same to call esports a sport.  However, when we're talking about the relationship with the player, the physical aspect makes a big difference.  A kid who works out to keep in shape for their sport gains a benefit in life, and pushes themself in a way that is not present in esports.  It just isn't physically demanding at all, and the glib remark about treadmills doesn't address the massive chasm between sports and esports in this reguard.  All that being said, I really enjoyed watching DoTA 2 matches with broadcasts, and considering all the strategies employed by exceptional players.  So, to me, a guy who never played football, watching football feels very similar to watching an esport.

    Reply
  • February 7, 2015 at 7:22 pm
    Permalink

    Imagine the obesity rates in america. Also, the team will probably be insta filled because 90% of the boys will want to be on the team lol

    Reply
  • February 9, 2015 at 1:06 am
    Permalink

    A professional NHL hockey player is an athlete. Someone who kicks ass at NHL '14 is not.

    Reply
  • February 15, 2015 at 11:17 am
    Permalink

    Being someone thats competed at comps for fps's you cant tell me playing a tournament for 6-8 hours isnt physically taxing. Yes sitting down but your back gets sore, your hands get sore you need to ensure you a drinking water. Ok yes your not running for 6 hours but theres a big different between sitting down and playing a casual game all day and sitting down competing in a tournament for the entire day.

    Reply
  • February 17, 2015 at 7:58 pm
    Permalink

    I think it should be considered an esport. There is a specific name for online sports! Why make a big deal, high school should have a extra curricular activity having a league team. It would focus all groups of people not just the physically active. 

    Reply
  • February 21, 2015 at 4:11 pm
    Permalink

    esports are sports but no I don't think any privately owned I.P. should be the basis for a highschool esports program

    Reply
  • February 25, 2015 at 8:43 pm
    Permalink

    Esport is no more a sport than political science or computer science is an actual science.  Chess and poker could then be considered a sport.  A sport is a game that challenges athleticism, primarily.  Athletes don't have to physically train to play chess or poker, or even Madden 2015.  Should a High School have a chess team, a poker team, LoL team, CS go team, math team poetry team? WTF not, but not because they are all sports.

    Reply
  • February 26, 2015 at 7:15 pm
    Permalink

    I play both LoL and a variety of sports. I can honestly say that i do really like LoL, but even I cannot call it a sport. Yes, the original sports and LoL both do require lots of thinking, teamwork, and co-operation to succeed, but a true athlete pushes his whole body to the limit to get to where he/she is to be a real athlete. Not just their hands/fingers used to press around 10 buttons on a keyboard, in front of a computer screen for hours a day. That's kinda sad. (Just imo, please don't be offended). In real sports, win or lose, you can share it with your teammates. But more often than not, I've seen friendships torn apart just because someone accidentally "fed" in a virtual game (again, stupid as hell). People also just don't trash talk people on their own team or opponents during a sport game and call it "for fun." (Not to mention that it's rude AF and sportmanship doesn't even exist here).

    Sitting in a chair in front of a bright screen all day compared to being outside or inside a gym space playing with real people that aren't through the web. 

    If i had to give up either real sports or LoL, I'd give up League any day. 

    Just my thoughts. 

    Reply
  • March 4, 2015 at 4:41 am
    Permalink

    Rule number 1: if you can sit down while playing it's not a sport.

    Reply
  • April 14, 2015 at 8:25 pm
    Permalink

    I run a High School league, and would love to chat with you more about this.  A little late, as I have just discovered this video.  If you want to talk, shoot me a reply or PM and we can get together on Skype!  Thanks!

    Reply
  • April 29, 2015 at 7:49 am
    Permalink

    funny thing, Its in high schools now and colleges are offering scholarships soooooooo yeah.

    Reply
  • May 12, 2015 at 7:06 pm
    Permalink

    yes my friend was talking about the idea and i'm 100% with him and we where thinking of doing it in our school, it is a great way for people that dont like your traditional athletics a way to do an athletic that they would enjoy doing or any other game like smite

    Reply
  • May 13, 2015 at 10:30 pm
    Permalink

    Nope, League of Legends isn't a sport. It involves no work-out, there are no real athletes only "players". All it involves is strategic thinking, which most sports can incorporate that.

    Reply
  • June 16, 2015 at 12:55 am
    Permalink

    League of Legends may be owned by Riot Games but the MOBA genre isn't. If rito went bankrupt, the players from that game could easily transition into another of the genre. Or they could focus on many different MOBA games. I've seen familiar teams from League of Legends make their way into Smite, Dota 2, and Heroes of the Storm. While they weren't the same players (at least to my knowledge), they were the same teams. Public institutions could simply support the genres of video games (that make their way into e-sports) instead of the respective games themselves.

    Another thought I had is that every game that makes its way to e-sports could be forced to deliver a sort of legacy copy of the game with all the source code. If rito were to go bankrupt or the game changed in an undesirable way, the game could live on in it and even still be patched by community approved patches. No idea how that would work out, but I'm sure it could definitely be made possible with the right regulations and support.

    Reply
  • July 9, 2015 at 10:52 pm
    Permalink

    I don't consider games like football, baseball, basketball, etc. sports. To me sports are things like swimming, wrestling (non point based individual), track. So to me video games are on the level as something like football.

    Reply
  • September 7, 2015 at 5:33 pm
    Permalink

    Simple answer. No.

    Reply
  • October 16, 2015 at 10:35 pm
    Permalink

    E sports are not sports 😂 seriously guys. A sport needs physical extension. If you are conceived you are an athlete by playing exports you are not the brightest.

    Reply
  • November 7, 2015 at 8:00 am
    Permalink

    Hell ya saying it right

    Reply
  • November 18, 2015 at 12:07 am
    Permalink

    If you think about it, this wouldn't be fair because whichever school that has higher Asian population will win.

    Reply
  • November 28, 2015 at 5:23 am
    Permalink

    in my school, its more popular then football. we have a full lan center and its awesome.

    Reply
  • December 29, 2015 at 8:06 pm
    Permalink

    Esports are not actual sports and I enjoy watching LOL Championship.

    Reply
  • January 14, 2016 at 5:23 am
    Permalink

    5:09 PLEASE LET IT JUST STAY!

    Reply
  • February 23, 2016 at 3:04 pm
    Permalink

    This discussion is actually not new, see chess, same questions, same issue, but going on before the video games and Internet.

    Reply
  • August 14, 2016 at 8:08 pm
    Permalink

    well it is a high school and college sport, take it to the bank

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *