What is lowercase esports?

Who are you? Why are you wearing 3D glasses? Can you please stop with the eSports hate? How can you be this much of a pedant?

Those are all valid questions. Well, except the third one. 3D glasses are the future, don’t you know? I’m certain that’s all I need to say about that.

Let’s go ahead and answer these questions one at a time, shall we?

What is lowercase esports?

lowercase esports spawned out of the collection of blog posts and podcast episodes that represent my flippant style of esports cynicism. Until recently, I published opinion pieces about esports on my personal blog or directly under my name. I’ve since had a change of heart about these posts being out under my name only, especially as I want to try growing an audience for all of this. I also came to the realization that others out there might en up sharing similar opinions to mine—so lowercase esports is meant to also be a welcome spot for like-minded pundits.

The origin of the name comes from the ongoing disagreement about how to print the word “esports.” In my opinion, the presence of a capital or lowercase letter s serves as an indicator about an organization or team being out of touch with digital culture.

But really, it’s just a name. I thought it sounded catchy.

Who are you?

Generally, I’m a borderline depressed/nervous wreck that works in the tech industry, providing support to an internet-based small business based on Richmond, VA.

As far as esports goes, I’ve had my hand in a few now-defunct organizations and projects including ESFI World, a division of the STA League and a GoldSrc total conversion mod called Hostile Intent. I’ve been a recurring guest on Kritzkast and a regular contributor to the FriendlyFire podcast during the heyday of competitive Team Fortress 2 (which, in my opinion, was years ago).

I’m presently hosting my own podcast, the lowercase esports podcast, and co-hosting Esports Morning with my friend, Chris Schetter.

Can you please stop with the capital S hate?


How can you be this much of a pedant?

Well, it’s not that difficult at all.

See, the quick and dirty rebuttal to use is: “do you use eMail or email?” The follow up being: “if you see someone spell it with the capital M, do you instantly conclude that the writer is out of touch?” And if they answer in the negative to that follow up, your closing quip should be: “you realize that you’re a goddamn moron, right?” Alternatively, “go back to the 90s, ya fuckin’ square” also works.

A word’s proximity to brand names, identities, and titles helps it to become indistinguishable from the brand name, identity, or title. When you want to put a thing on a pedestal for any given reason, you give it the proper noun treatment, right? However, esports isn’t something that can be owned or narrowed down to a certain prestiege of competition or a particular publisher’s title. It’s a general term that applies to competitive gaming and the every part of the ecosystem that supports it from gambling to micro-transactions.

Additional reading material discussing the case of upper/lowercase spelling of esports can be found over on Chris Schetter’s blog along with a more modern thought exercise recently published on The Meta.

Yeah, okay, fine — you’re a toxic douchelord, I get it — but why?

There are some people who want to break into esports and spend plenty of their free time striving to do so. I have nothing but admiration for the folks in esports who started from volunteering (which is pretty much everyone that isn’t in an esports role at a game studio, these days).

When I went to EVO as a volunteer ref, I bumped into players on all levels from professional Top 8 finalists to any given town’s local hero that thinks they might have a chance to go deep in the tournament. The privilege of watching then play up close was awesome and everyone should be able to go to an event. Being in the room and working with the centralized cabal who ran several tournaments at once was what I’ve wanted to do in the scene for a long time. I found how I can contribute in a meaningful way. But while there might be big tournaments every weekend, they’re not all around my city, and I certainly don’t make enough to travel around in the style I prefer (which is alone, icrievrytiem).

Instead of only helping execute events when I can, I want to throw some ideas out there and sometimes play devil’s advocate for the industry at large when I can’t travel.

I don’t want to become the most popular pundit out there, but I do want to spark more public discussion about how to make esports a better thing. I can’t help but look at the games that make up the FGC and think, there are so many good things here that aren’t present in other esports. There are other esports that deserve more attention that are ignored because they are too complex to consider or are too old to be revived again.

You didn’t answer my question, moron.

Yeah. How about that?

Anyway, it’s time to stake my claim. Here we go.