As the world struggles to recoup after the devastation brought on by the Coronavirus, new and innovative efforts emerge. Daily activities such as work, shopping, and favorite hobbies all look a little different these days. In the wake of social distancing and other pandemic related restrictions, some new ways of doing life have emerged. The rise of virtual sporting events is one of the major changes to break out in recent months.
Stadiums, arenas, and racetracks are prone to overcrowding and those conditions simply are not conducive to safe social distancing practices. Even local football and soccer fields have the potential to become breeding grounds for disease. Although social norms have changed, interest in sports and athletic activities remain at an all-time high. Virtual events are one way to avoid the crowds but still entertain the masses.
Local and international organizations are feeling the strain of canceled events. Marketing companies, fundraisers, political groups, and others suffer because of the lack of physical events. Virtual meetings are an easy way to ensure that business continues in some viable format. Likewise, virtual events help communities and organizations meet their goals and connect with one another. Currently, all types of virtual events, from beauty pageants to graduations to sporting events hosted every day.
The history of virtual sports dates back several decades. Modern-day developments are largely due to the creation of a baseball simulation game developed by early technology engineer John Burgeson. His love of baseball drove this IBM employee to recreate the national past time on a low-resolution screen. Slow but continuous progress followed and even continue to expand the world of virtual sports and sports betting.
New and Renewed Interest
The turnout for virtual sports events has quickly outpaced physical attendance in several areas. Motorsports, such as the NASCAR All-Star Esport Battle, are a prime example of the overwhelming viewership of virtual sports. This highly sponsored race was held near the height of the pandemic outbreak and resulted in some record-breaking activities of its own. Over 12 million minutes of viewership and an unprecedented 30,000 YouTube comments followed the All-Star battle. Clearly, the future is here and will indeed be televised.