British Esports Championships to go ahead, with teams playing from home
We assume you’ve been following the single most important news story of the past year. If so, you’re well aware that COVID-19 has affected just about every aspect of life. This includes esports and gaming, for better and worse.
At the end of last year, the British Esports Association decided to put the Spring Division of the British Esports Championships on hold. Today, the organization announced that the action would commence on February 24, with teams playing remotely from home. The matches will be livestreamed on the Britsh Esports Twitch channel.
For those not in the know: the British Esports Championships is a national competition in which students aged 12 and older compete in League of Legends, Rocket League, and Overwatch.
According to today’s press release, “After surveying participants of the Championships, the majority of schools and colleges were able to continue to participate remotely during lockdown. British Esports staff also spoke individually with teams that would struggle to participate remotely to offer advice and support.”
Schools and colleges in the U.K. can still register for the Spring Divisions here, with the final deadline being 5 .pm. GMT on Friday (February 19).
There’s more news from the British Esports Association today. The organization has revealed details of a new membership platform designed to protect players from cyber bullying and other toxic behaviour.
The platform will launch in the spring. Initially it will focus on students aged 12 to 19, expanding to other age groups later on. According to a February 17 press release, the new membership platform is a collaboration with IBM. It “will explore how IBM Watson products can be used to enhance user experience, safety and wellbeing of young gamers.”
The BEA has also teamed up with safety-technology provider GoBubble for real-time content moderation. Privacy-preserving age-verification technology from Yoti will ensure age-appropriate interactions.
Chester King is the CEO and founder of the British Esports Association. King commented: “Over the past few years we’ve worked hard to build a community of esports fans from schools and colleges across the U.K.
“What’s been clear through feedback from parents and teachers is the need to ensure that young people know who they are playing and communicating with, and that where communication takes place, we must work hard to reduce toxicity in all its forms.
“When addressing these concerns, we also must keep in mind the experience for young people, so whilst we have a focus in a safer space, we want to ensure that the experience is relevant and exciting. This will be done through curated relevant content, exclusive offers, discounts and competitions and exciting esports tournaments taking place throughout the year.”