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Gaming an Olympic sport?

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Running, swimming and weight-lifting are all sports that instantly come to
mind when thinking about the Olympics. Video games, on the other hand, don't
generally feature on this list. However, a recent drive by the Global Gaming
League (GGL) wants to see this change. Ted Owen is behind this push and was
aiming to get the 'sport' introduced at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

According to Owen, "People aren't watching the Olympics anymore. You need to
bring younger viewers back if you want to keep making money. To do that you
need to embrace non-traditional sports."
Michael James, editor of NAG, SA's leading gaming magazine, says: "While
most sports focus on physical prowess, few recognise mental agility. This is
where video games can bridge the gap. The gaming community is populated by
some of the most competitive and motivated individuals, willing to invest
heavily in training and the top-of-the-range products, in order to become
the best of the best."
According to Morris, the Director of content development for CNNMoney.com,
competitive gaming plays a major role in Asian culture, with the Chinese
industry alone estimated to top US$2 Billion annually by 2010. This
popularity is what drove the GGL to seek approval from the Chinese
Government first before going to the IOC.
"The Olympics hasn't seen a demonstration sport since 1992, and there has
been no indication from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) that they
are revising this decision.
Nevertheless, it is Owen's perception that "the only reason they haven't
done an exhibition sport in the past several years is no one has brought a
good one to them."
The annual rAge Expo is the perfect place to decide for yourself whether
competitive gaming is worthy of inclusion in the Olympics as a sport.
Samsung will be playing host to the SA National Final of the World Cyber
Games, which is a global tournament in which nearly one million players from
around the world compete against each other for the title of world champion
in separate events. The SA finalists will join over 700 players from 74
countries in Cologne, Germany in November to take part in the eighth annual
WCG Grand Final event.
The rAge exhibition is also packed with hot new games to play and loads of
cool computer and gaming kit to buy. Set to take place at the beginning of
October this year, the really Awesome gaming expo appeals to anyone who's
into the fun side of technology.