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Landscapes of tension, tribalism and toxicity: configuring a spatial politics of esport communities
Proliferation of esport has created a complex landscape of participants, communities, organisations and investors. With alluring lucrative economic, social and political incentives, the crowded esport commons has become a site of rich resource for varied interests, yet also a locale of idea sharing, community production, and collective action. Notwithstanding advantageous outcomes for some stakeholders, esport has also become a space of turbulent tribal relations, exclusion, marginalisation, and inequalities. Such issues precipitate the need for closer examination of esport spaces, relations within these communities, and the underlying ideological and moral conditions thereof. Drawing on spatial theory, and utilising data from 16 semi-structured interviews and 3 focus groups (n= 65) with key esport stakeholders, this research explores current experiences of identity and esport community membership. Our investigation focused on esport and explored the ideological grounding, current practices and tensions present within esport communities.
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- Loughborough University London