Esports Observer reports that any momentum toward esports joining the Olympics was “stunted” last week after a high-level IOC group issued a statement saying “discussion about the inclusion of esports/egames as a medal event on the Olympic program is premature”.
Esports Observer reports that the statement cited several “uncertainties” that makes it difficult to bring video games into the Olympics, including the games industry’s fragmentation and competition, its for-profit status and rapid technological evolution. It also repeated the IOC belief that “some egames are not compatible with the Olympic values”, referring to violence.
However, the article states, the statement did make an exception for video games that directly simulate existing sports, such as EA Sports’ FIFA title, encouraging international sport federations to further study the potential benefit of cooperation with those games.
The statement was included in a communiqué of the annual Olympic Summit, an informal closed-door meeting of a variety of senior stakeholders in the industry, including the IOC President, Thomas Bach. To read the Esports Observer article in full, click here.