Time to be Grown-Ups About Video Gaming: The Rising eSports Industry and the Need for Regulation

Ten years ago, eSports were an eccentric pastime primarily enjoyed in South Korea. However, in the past several years, eSports have seen meteoric growth in dozens of markets, attracting tens of millions of viewers each year in the United States, alone. Meanwhile, the players who make up the various teams that play eSports professionally enjoy few protections. The result is that many of these players—whose average ages are between 18 and 22—are experiencing health complications after practicing as much as 14 hours a day to retain their professional status. This Note will explore why traditional solutions, like existing labor laws, fail to address the problem, why unionizing is impracticable under the current model, and finally, suggest regulatory solutions to address the unique characteristics of the industry.