November 18, 2019

‘But Mom, Video Games Are My Job’

“Kyle Giersdorf is 16 years old. He’s a junior at Pottsgrove High School, about half an hour from my home in suburban Philadelphia. In July, he won the first-ever Fortnite World Cup, earning $3 million.

As a family doctor, I often hear from parents about how their kids push back at any attempt to limit how much time they spend playing video games. The parents will say, it’s after midnight, maybe it’s time to turn off the video game and get some sleep. But the kid — usually a teenage boy — responds that he wants to be a professional gamer. “This is my job,” the boy might say.

E-sports are booming. When the National Association of Collegiate Esports (NACE) was started three years ago, only seven American colleges offered formal e-sports competition. NACE now has more than 170 member colleges and universities in the United States.

Millions of young Americans are paying real money to watch other young people play video games. Tyler Blevins, known as “Ninja,” earns $500,000 a month playing Fortnite — and that was before he dumped his previous host, Twitch, where he had over 14 million followers, to join Microsoft’s streaming platform, Mixer.”

Read more

JJ Editor's Picks

"The top brass of China’s Communist Party (CCP) – its 370-strong Central Committee – recently emerged from the Fourth Plenum of the 2017 Party Congress. Such meetings, usually one a year, are key forums for policy discussion. At the previous..."

"Mayor Pete is having his moment — for the second time in the campaign. Surging to the head of the pack in a recent Iowa poll, and edging out Vice President Joe Biden in last quarter's money race, Buttigieg is staking his claim to being the..."

"careful reading of Walden; or, Life in the Woods makes it clear that Thoreau never intended his cabin to be a solitary hermitage, although fans and detractors alike often misunderstand this. It was more an author’s workshop than a fortress of..."

"In the fall of 2015, a rash of posters appeared around Copenhagen. One, in pink letters laid over an image of chicken eggs, asked, “Have you counted your eggs today?” A second — a blue-tinted close-up of human sperm — inquired, “Do they swim too..."

"While there’s plenty of disagreement about how the money should be used, almost everyone involved in public-policy debates agrees that it would be good if the federal government could collect more revenue without raising tax rates or reducing..."

"On a brisk November night, a solitary man wandered around the plaza outside the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts on the edge of downtown. He had just flown alone from New York to see his favorite comic, Louis C.K., and he had an extra..."

"Judaism has been described as many things: a culture, a people, a religion, a nationality, and more (including, according to answers given to the 2013 Pew survey of American Jews, a culinary disposition for bagels and smoked salmon or the..."

"US sex education is decades behind other countries. Right now, it isn’t even mandatory in every state. Add to that the awkwardness people feel about sex and bodies in general, top it with the idea of having to have these discussions in public..."