2022 Student Research Conference:
35th Annual Student Research Conference

Esports: Motivation in Spectatorship and Participation


Joseph D. Van Lieshout
Dr. Anton Daughters and Dr. Brian Ott, Faculty Mentors

Esports are a rapidly expanding field both as a market and a hobby. Studies surrounding esports use the same methods as those used in studies of traditional sports. However, fundamental differences between the appeal of these two fields are overlooked using this method. I conducted semi-structured interviews with esports players and spectators alongside participant observation to answer the questions: What draws fans to specific esports? How does the relationship between spectatorship, play, and community interaction affect fan experience? I found that fans have a variety of reasons that draw them to specific esports which are not accounted for by the predominant method of study, and the role that playing games has in esports spectatorship is fundamental to the esports fandom.

Keywords: Esports, Spectatorship, Interview, Participant Observation

Topic(s):Anthropology

Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

Session: 103-3
Location: SUB GEO B
Time: 9:00

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