During the Olympic Esports Week, elite gamers gained first-hand insight into the potential implications of including Esports in the international sports doping standards. This occurred shortly after the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) revealed that Esports may eventually fall under its code.
WADA made an announcement that the Global Esports Federation (GEF) had approached them to collaborate on an educational initiative as an initial step toward embracing the international anti-doping code.
Gamers who took part in the Esports Olympic Week underwent a process of familiarising themselves with doping regulations that govern competitive international sports, which currently do not encompass Esports. While certain activities, such as the cycling game, Zwift, fall within the jurisdiction of international federations and are thus subject to doping regulations, the focus of the anti-doping aspect of the inaugural Olympic event in Singapore was primarily on education.
Vincent Pereira, the head of virtual sport at the International Olympic Committee (IOC), commented on the matter, stating, “I firmly believe that fairness and the fight against doping have always been pivotal aspects of the Olympic movement. The responsibility for implementing doping regulations that align with their own rules lies with the international federations. Furthermore, since gaming represents a new realm of competition, we aim to provide educational sessions”.
The upcoming Asian Games in Hangzhou, scheduled for later this year, will be a significant milestone, including an Esports medal event. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) officially recognised Esports as a “sports activity” back in 2017. However, for the GEF to participate in the Olympics, it must become a signatory to the WADA code and establish a drug-testing program.