31 October 2017

Following the invitation of the IOC, the leading representatives of the Olympic Movement met in Lausanne to discuss several topics which are important to the future of the Olympic Movement.

The main areas under discussion were: Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, Protection of clean athletes, various antidoping items – such as targeted pre-Games testing, Schmid/Oswald Commissions, founding of the Independent Testing Authority (ITA) – the development of “eSports” and Athletes’ representation.

The focus on the development of “eSports” was the most closely commented item by media, as Digital magazine “Francs Jeux” that noted that In less than 24 hours  “the two most powerful organizations in the international sports movement, FIFA and the IOC, have opened the door to electronic sports. They paved the way for “eSports”. Simple chance of the calendar that says a lot about the future – commented the French-speaking magazine

The Olympic Summit eventually discussed the rapid development of what are called “eSports”, and the current involvement of various Olympic Movement stakeholders.

The Summit agreed that:

-“eSports” are showing strong growth, especially within the youth demographic across different countries, and can provide a platform for engagement with the Olympic Movement.

-Competitive “eSports” could be considered as a sporting activity, and the players involved prepare and train with an intensity which may be comparable to athletes in traditional sports.

-In order to be recognised by the IOC as a sport, the content of “eSports” must not infringe on the Olympic values.

-A further requirement for recognition by the IOC must be the existence of an organisation guaranteeing compliance with the rules and regulations of the Olympic Movement (anti-doping, betting, manipulation, etc.).

The Summit asked the IOC together with the general Assembly of International Sports Federations -GAISF, in a dialogue with the gaming industry and players to explore this area further and to come back to the Olympic Movement stakeholders in due course.

The future will be digital? The prediction sounds like an obviousness.