DLA Piper eSports Laws of the World is meant to be a review of the main legal issues affecting eSports in the main jurisdictions worldwide.
After months of hard work with our colleagues all around the world, we are ready for the launch of DLA Piper eSports Laws of the World. It was the result of fantastic teamwork, which shows the commitment of our firm to provide our clients with innovative tools to support their business.
The eSports market has been booming over the last years, but unfortunately, or fortunately, in some cases, regulations have not been able to catch up. Gamblings, sports, and prize promotion/advertising rules might apply to eSports events, impose restrictions or grant exemptions, depending on how and where they are organized. The possible variants include the following: is the eSports tournament online or landbased? Is a country recognizing eSports as an official sport? Can any type of prize be awarded to participants? What are the technical requirements to be complied with? And what is the actual risk of penalties?
At the same time, there are several different actors in the eSports market. From event organizers to media companies, including online platforms, to sponsors and video game publishers which have different roles, responsibilities, and need to preserve and maximize their profits and exploitation rights. Even stringent contracts and corporate structures might not be enforceable if in contrast with local laws, endangering the profitability of the entire investment.
And the same issues arise in contracting players. These might be players who could become extremely popular in a quite short period also through online streaming platforms and channels of communications that are rapidly changing. As such, the appropriate contracting of their services is paramount to avoid subsequent challenges.
DLA Piper eSports Laws of the World is not meant to give a comprehensive review of the main laws affecting eSports in 39 jurisdictions, and it should not be considered a replacement of legal advice. Also, regulations in this area will quickly change, and we expect to frequently update the guide, also following clients’ requests and feedbacks.
Our hope is though that the guide will be able to flag potential issues and possible solutions. They will be then deeply assessed with the primary contact of the relevant jurisdiction indicated in the guide so that potential risks are adequately tackled and opportunities can be taken.