Now & Next Podcast S2E2 – For Pro Gamer Stephanie Harvey, Esports Are “the New Rock’n’Roll”

AKA missharvey, five-time Counter-Strike World Champ Stephanie Harvey joins Leora Kornfeld in the studio for a chat about the booming eSports industry and Canada’s place within it.

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eSports: From the Fringes to a Billion-Dollar Industry

On this episode of Now & Next, an in depth look at the world of competitive video game playing, otherwise known as eSports. Our guide through this fast-paced world is professional player Stephanie Harvey.

Stephanie is originally from Quebec City, and in addition to being a five-time World Champion for the game Counter-Strike, she is the recipient of such accolades as being named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list and the BBC’s list of 100 inspiring women. Oh, and she won the title of Canada’s Smartest Person in 2017.

eSports is predicted to become a billion-dollar global industry this year. It’s particularly popular in Asia, where large cities boast thousands of gaming rooms packed, day in and day out, with players vying for video game domination.

As the trend picks up speed, Stephanie Harvey knows that several impediments still exist to its full mainstream acceptance. There are, for example, widely held negative perceptions of the gaming industry that need to be overcome as well as the fact that, from players to spectators, eSports is predominantly a boys’ club. Still, she remains hopeful.

On this episode you’ll hear about:

  • Recent pivotal moments in the mainstream-ization of eSports (3:40)
  • How eSports are making inroads in Canada (8:48)
  • The economic structures at work in eSports (11:26)
  • The gender pay gap prevalent in this industry and the place of women in eSports (16:30)

Download a transcript of the episode

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About Now & Next

Now & Next is a podcast featuring in-depth interviews in which experts take a closer look at emerging trends and the digital transformation of the media and entertainment industries. Now & Next is brought to you by the Canada Media Fund, produced by Katie Jensen and recorded in Toronto at Vocal Fry Studios. Leora Kornfeld hosts the series.