AnyKey undertook research at IEM San Jose (Nov 21 & 22, 2015) on esports fandom with an eye toward larger questions of diversity and gender. The overall framing for the fieldwork involved:

  • Getting basic data on the number of women attending IEM San Jose.
  • Explore why people attend esports events and/or the barriers to doing so.
  • Understand more about esports fan participation at live events.
  • Crucial to the method was to examine these issues across both men & women so as to avoid simplistic preconceptions by assuming difference.

The team slightly oversampled for women given the overall lack of data generally about their place in esports, but in general kept an eye out for both contrast and similarities in the analysis.

Data: Over the course of the two-day event the team gathered approximately 70 hours of observational data and 150 interviews. We also conducted nine head-counts, most broken down by audience seating to assess gender ratios in CSGO versus League of Legends spectating.

application-pdf To read more, download AnyKey White Paper #2 here.