The gaming industry in China had been through harsh times during the past year or so. As you remember, the Chinese government had enforced their own version of gaming prohibition, apparently blaming video games for everything from epidemics of myopia among minors, addiction and antisocial behavior to floods and earthquakes. They administered severe restrictions, placing the veto on the publication of new video games, thus seriously endangering even seemingly shatterproof gaming titans such as Tencent and NetEase. Despite that, the Chinese people are obviously quite serious, even fanatical about gaming, just as it’s shown by numerous triumphs made by their national esports teams, the most notable being a prodigious success of Invictus Gaming who won League of Legends 2018 World Championship.
Luckily, it seems that better days are coming for the gaming culture in China since the Chinese government plans to acknowledge gaming as an official profession. On January 25 China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security had made an official statement that two new gaming-related professions will be formally approved, together with other professions that found themselves on the list issued by Chinese Occupation Skill Testing Authority. In short, OSTA had released a list of some 15 professions, all tech related, including esports operators and esports professionals.
According to OSTAS’s interpretation of these two profiles, esports operators will concern themselves with the organizational side of esports events – they’ll promote and organize various esports happenings, and produce esports related content. On the other hand, esports professionals are one other than professional gamers who train, participate and compete in esports events, but also analyze games for the sake of increasing gaming performance, whether their own or other pro gamers they train. One of the more interesting sides of this specific Chinese interpretation of what these esports professionals should do is so-called account boosting, i.e. boosting the level or rank of other players for financial recompense, which is, in esports circles, considered as cheating of the worst kind and a severe violation of all existing gaming regulations and norms of accepted behaviour.
Nonetheless, this speaks volumes about the willingness of the Chinese government to move with the times and acknowledge the importance of video games and the gaming industry. They’re evidently beginning to realize that video games aren’t just (from their perspective) something that can potentially only exercise a negative influence on the Chinese youth, but also a tremendously positive economic and artistic force which can provide additional jobs. As for the Chinese people themselves, their response to these new gaming professions had been phenomenal, Judging by all reports, there are many of those who are interested to professionally pursue a career in gaming, which will certainly greatly aid in the creation of more positive image of gaming and gaming industry in the Chinese culture, as well perhaps even paving the way for other countries as well.