Following the recent partnership, in a unified effort to combat the presence of online abuse in sports, the International Esports Federation (IESF) is now supporting the campaign led by the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) and United Against Online Abuse (UAOA). By joining forces, the IESF reaffirms its commitment to creating a fair digital environment that upholds the principles of humanity, sportsmanship and respect for athletes.
International sporting federations and NGOs have come together in the first-ever industry-wide barometer survey to express grave concerns about the harmful effect that online abuse is having on sports and its competitors.
Among the headline findings of the survey, undertaken by the United Against Online Abuse campaign, was a concern among the 22 sporting federations and NGOs that participated that abuse is driving sports stars from the competition.
Online abuse puts sports at risk of losing stars – UAOA survey finds:
- United Against Online Abuse campaign releases findings of first-ever industry-wide barometer.
- The survey takes perspectives from global sporting federations including FIFA, World Athletics, UCI, ITF, World Netball, FIM, FIA.
- 75% of the respondents to the survey reported that competitors regularly face threats of harm against themselves or their families.
- 66% of federations believe that social media platforms should do more to tackle online abuse, with 90% expressing fears that the issue will prompt stars to leave the sport.
Mohammed Ben Sulayem, Founding Partner of UAOA and President of the FIA, said: “Online abuse is a persistent issue within the sporting world. A number of international federations have voiced their concerns via our barometer survey and in regular discussions we have held since the campaign launch in 2022. The survey findings highlight the importance of united anti-abuse efforts across sporting ecosystems and beyond.
“As part of the UAOA campaign, the aim of our coalition is to rid our sport of the scourge of online abuse. Together we seek to bring about behavioral and regulatory change to create a safer, more harmonious environment free of abuse, hate speech, and harassment. We already have the support of a number of sporting bodies and governments and are in discussions with other stakeholders to grow our support base.”
Boban Totovski, General Secretary of the International Esports Federation, said: “The International Esports Federation is built on respect, not rage. Whether you’re a pro player or a weekend warrior, let’s spread positive vibes and make Esports a community, not a battleground. Level up your sportsmanship, not your toxicity. Remember, the real victory is respect, not burning books. Let’s make Esports a place where everyone feels welcome.”
Esports to Beat Football? SOFTSWISS Shares Sports Betting Trends for 2024
Esports is raising its position among top sports by bets in 2023. The product team of the SOFTSWISS Sportsbook, a top sports betting software provider, reflects on the past year.
Esports Unstoppable Rise
Over the past three years, the top three sports by bets remain unchanged, with football, tennis and basketball maintaining their leadership. In contrast, esports has demonstrated a consistent upward trend, progressing from the seventh position in 2021 to the fourth in 2023. Notably, Counter-Strike stands out, claiming the sixth position among the top ten disciplines by the number of bets.
Alexander Kamenetskyi, Head of SOFTSWISS Sportsbook, comments: “Considering the rise of esports, we guide our partners to focus on cyber disciplines, engaging audiences beyond traditional betting demographics. Highlighting the cybersports potential for operators, Newzoo’s report projects 640 million viewers by 2025.”
Mobiles Drive 92% of Operator GGR
Another notable trend in sports betting, which has remained unchanged for several years, is the consistent growth in bets made from mobile devices. According to the SOFTSWISS Sportsbook, 80% of bets in 2023 were placed via mobile versus 70% in 2022 and 68% in 2021. This trend solidifies as players increasingly opt for mobile convenience, especially in live betting scenarios. More importantly, it was mobile devices that contributed 92% to the operators’ GGR.
Kamenetskyi adds: “Mobile betting is one of our main focuses in product development. We put much effort into improving our mobile application and mobile website. It is specifically important for locations facing challenges with internet connectivity and regions like LatAm and Africa where internet coverage is still growing.”
Casino Turnover Drops During Major Sports Events
The SOFTSWISS Sportsbook team has repeatedly emphasised shifts in player behaviour around major sports events. Specifically, there was a 10–20% drop in online casino turnover, coinciding with the World Cup 2022. This highlights a dynamic wherein a significant portion of casino players redirect their focus towards sports betting based on seasonal patterns. Considering audience preferences, reinforcing casinos with sportsbooks is a logical step.
Kamenetskyi adds: “This pattern underscores the strategic imperative for iGaming stakeholders to recognise the synergistic relationship between casino ventures and sportsbooks. Combining these options not only enhances casino appeal but also maintains player engagement, especially during sports events. In this context, it is worth mentioning that the SOFTSWISS Sportsbook is compatible with any casino platform on the market.”
Additionally, the SOFTSWISS Sportsbook team notes the strengthening of other trends like regulation and responsible gambling that have recently been highlighted in the iGaming Trends 2024 report by SOFTSWISS. The SOFTSWISS Sportsbook team will be glad to discuss all learnings during the first SBC Summit Rio at the stand D360.
SOFTSWISS is an international tech company supplying software solutions for managing iGaming projects. The expert team, which counts over 2,000 employees, is based in Malta, Poland and Georgia. SOFTSWISS holds a number of gaming licences and provides one-stop-shop iGaming software solutions. The company has a vast product portfolio, including the Online Casino Platform, the Game Aggregator with thousands of casino games, the Affilka affiliate platform, the Sportsbook Platform and the Jackpot Aggregator. In 2013, SOFTSWISS was the first in the world to introduce a Bitcoin-optimised online casino solution.
Abios scales up esoccer offering through new data deal with Betinvest
Through a new data partnership with Betinvest, Kambi subsidiary Abios gets access to an additional 4,650 matches of esoccer from the tournaments CyberLive!Arena (CLA) and Esport Pro Club (EPC). This allows Abios to power its partners with fast and engaging betting experiences, perfect for sportsbooks looking to capitalise on the combination of digital esports and analogue sports.
Last year, Abios released its esoccer offering featuring an odds feed, widgets and accompanying streams, creating an all-in-one betting experience. It proved to be a popular product for sportsbooks looking to increase live content after big events or during season downtime.
To increase coverage, create a more consistent offering and enable larger customer differentiation, Abios has partnered with sportsbook solutions provider Betinvest. Through the deal, Abios gets access to over 4,650 monthly events across CyberLive!Arena (CLA) and Esport Pro Club (EPC) tournaments.
This allows Abios to price and provide data and streams for an increased number of events, making sure there is live content available in the sportsbook, even during breaks in the seasonal football season.
The events are played in EA Sports’ FC game, formerly known as FIFA, which allows two players to control teams of players on a high-tech, simulated football field. In its simplicity and likeness to football, the game and its esports segment cater to fans of both football and esports, making it a bridge connecting both worlds.
Dariia Petrus, Business Development Team Lead at Betinvest, says: “Looking forward, our partnership is poised for significant growth and innovation. We’ve established a solid base for collaboration, opening up a range of exciting opportunities for us to explore together. The synergy of our shared expertise and efforts sets this venture apart, making it a noteworthy endeavor. This collaboration goes beyond achieving shared goals; it’s about the enriching experiences and mutual growth we’ll achieve along the way. We’re genuinely excited about what lies ahead and eagerly anticipate the start of our joint efforts.”
Oskar Bonnevier Fröberg, Managing Director and Founder of Abios, comments: Abios has recently taken significant strides to facilitate our esoccer product reaching new heights. With proprietary modelling, access to best-in-class data sources and a team of esports experts, we’ve been able to build a reliable odds feed coupled with exciting bet offers.
To help us provide 24/7 content to partners across the globe, we’re thrilled to have Betinvest onboard. With the content they provide, we can ensure even higher flexibility and availability for our partners, ultimately leading to more differentiated and optimised sports betting offerings.”
Gen.G and University of Kentucky Bring Back Award Winning Conference “Campus Takeover” Designed to Drive the Future of Collegiate Esports
Global esports and gaming organization Gen.G and the University of Kentucky (UK) are bringing back their award winning collegiate esports industry conference, Campus Takeover, on March 30 and April 6. This two-day event will bring together esports professionals with students and administrators from different universities. UK continues to pave the way as an esports ecosystem leader in the SEC and Midwest region.
Campus Takeover Day 1 is a student-focused event leading up to the professional conference, and will be live-streamed at twitch.tv/universityofky on March 30 starting at 4:30 PM EST. Campus Takeover Day 2, the flagship professional conference, will be hosted at the Don & Cathy Jacobs Science Building on the University of Kentucky campus on April 6, starting at 10:00 AM EST.
“Since we started this event, we had a responsibility to uphold what future students expect of the University of Kentucky when it comes to their budding esports careers. There’s a lot expected about the future of gaming and esports, and we want to make sure our students are well equipped to be that expected change for years to come,” Heath Price, Associate Chief Information Officer at University of Kentucky, said.
Additionally, many esports professionals hailing from different segments of esports business will participate in various panels during Campus Takeover. The panels and discussions will cover a bevy of topics, including how to maximize your time when looking for new jobs, a conversation around esports, influencers, business, and video games, a look at intersectionality in games, and much more. Other clubs and programs will also be welcome to have tables within the Atrium during Campus Takeover, so even newer students get to see everything UK has to offer.
“University of Kentucky has been our long term collegiate partner; their investment in this community allows us to have a small hand in making sure the future of gaming and esports is secure. We all want to see this industry thrive, and we hope Campus Takeover is a stepping stone for other schools to form their own ways to develop the collegiate esports ecosystem,” Martin Kim, Chief Revenue Officer at Gen.G, said.
Campus Takeover was recognized at the 2023 Esports & Gaming Business Summit Tempest Awards, where it won the award for the Collegiate Esports Program of the Year.
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