The Associated Press, the largest non-profit news association, has just decided that the word "esports" will be used in its publications as just that: Esports.
As in, it's just a word like email.
In fact, the organization claims that it's now classifying the word in the exact same way as email, including the same grammatical rules that apply to it as well.
So no, it's no longer eSports, or e-sports, or Electronic Sports, or Digital Athletics, or any of that nonsense.
Lou Kesten, reviewer for the AP, had this to say:
Since so many of you are asking: AP style is now esports, due to "industry trends and general usage."— Lou Kesten (@lkesten) March 25, 2017
Here are general rules to keep in mind when using the word in publication:
- At the beginning of a sentence, the "e" in esports is capitalized, but not when used mid-sentence
- Esports is not a proper noun, hence why it's only capitalized at the beginning of a sentence
- In a title or header, either "Esports" or "esports" is allowed
On Twitter, medical editor @Mededitor had this to say:
The AP editors: "Some decisions were easy. But 'esports' wasn't one of them." #ACES2017 pic.twitter.com/JFSYD2hSlo— Mededitor (@Mededitor) March 24, 2017
Personally, it always felt like "eSports" was just trying so hard to legitimize the scene, as if to say, "SEE?!?! There's a capital 'S' for sports! It has to be sports now!"
If someone uses esports, are they trying to make a principled argument about equating traditional sports athletics with playing video games? No, come on. It's just a quick way to refer to what are obviously competitive games being played professionally.
And that always felt a bit cheap. Esports is just an easy way to explain what the activity is, just like email.
This doesn't even begin to address people who think that the industry shouldn't even use that term in the first place, but hopefully this decision puts that to rest as well.
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