The IEM Katowice group stage has been taking place this whole week, which was building up to the quarterfinals at the Spodek Arena. Unfortunately, there won’t be an audience this year in Spodek. The Polish Gouverneur of Silesia cancelled the event, according to a statement by ESL, due to changing global health concerns. This is one of the biggest tournaments in any esport that takes place during the year — its cancellation is a huge blow to esports.
It may be easier to tell you who IS going to GDC at this point. Microsoft and Epic Games are the latest companies to drop out of the conference due to health concerns over the coronavirus, continuing its impact on gaming and esports. A GDC spokesman has said that the event will be “moving forward as planned.”
The dark side of the esports industry can be a scary place. Work conditions and pay are something that the bottom line of workers in our industry struggle mightily with, something that Alexander Lee with The Nation examines. “But this corporate success obscures the industry’s dark side: a massive underclass of underpaid freelance workers and independent contractors.”