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Published: May 20, 2021

Written by: Edward Pearcey

  • South Korean congressman Dong-soo Yoo proposed a law that would stabilize the esports ecosystem against sudden event terminations
  • The “Heroes of the Storm law” would require publishers and distributors to announce tournament cancelations in advance
  • Yoo emphasized that since many professional players are still young, unilateral cancelation of a tournament damages their career

In order to prevent underhand tournament termination like what happened with Heroes of the Storm, congressman Dong-soo Yoo proposes a solution.

The Appropriately-Named “Heroes of the Storm Law”

Currently, game publishers are entitled of canceling events and tournament series whenever they please. No explanations need to be given and the livelihood of professional players always hangs on the edge. One congressman has had enough of this.

Dong-soo Yoo of the Democratic Party of (South) Korea has put forward a bill that proposes a solution to the problem at hand, Naver Sports first reported. Appropriately named “Heroes of the Storm law”, the proposed solution would prevent sudden cancelations like what happened with Blizzard’s Heroes of the Storm leagues years ago. If the bill passes, it would legally require the game’s publisher or distributor to forewarn everyone involved at least several months before the eventual termination.

Here is what congressman Yoo had to say on the matter:

“In esports, if the game publisher is no longer willing to support the competition, the rights of many other parties who are involved in the competitions, including esports organizations, players, casters, viewers, and others would seriously be affected by these kinds of unilateral decisions”

Why Yoo’s Vision is Important for the Ecosystem

When proposing the law, Yoo raised awareness of one very important detail: since a majority of professional esports athletes are either teens or young adults, having a sense of professional security is crucial for them. In order for those young people to build confidence and advance a career, it’s important that a healthy ecosystem is established. Sudden termination of whole leagues can be devastating for professional organizations and teams as it effectively leaves them jobless overnight.

“Laws must be in place to protect them from unilateral damage,” Yoo argued.

The damage Yoo speaks of, is the law’s namesake: Heroes of the Storm. Back in December 2018, by a unilateral decision of President J.Allen Brack, Blizzard suddenly terminated the Heroes Global Championship and the Heroes of the Dorm. This led to one of the many community outrages against the company. Esports athletes lost their livelihood in the blink of an eye.

South Korean team Gen.G had one of the best HOTS rosters. Its members being suddenly left without a job sure contributed to raising Dong-soo Yoo’s concerns. The South Korean congressman’s goals are noble. Currently, esports isn’t known for providing a stable and secure career. Teams are entitled to suddenly terminate deals over controversies, owners sometimes fail to pay and tournaments are delayed at the last moment or even canceled.

The Heroes of the Storm law can be a step to changing that and turning esports into safe and appealing career.

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