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Raising the Stakes: E-Sports and the Professionalization of Computer Gaming Hardcover – March 23, 2012

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Editorial Reviews

Review

The recent explosion in the popularity of competitive gaming lacks a sufficient amount of documented history for people to truly appreciate just how far professional video gaming has come. Finally, T.L. Taylor provides an amazing perspective on eSports that will educate fans about a period of competitive play that's nearly been forgotten. Forget what history you may know, this book gives you the history you should know.

(Marcus "djWHEAT" Graham, Host and Executive Producer, OneMoreGame.tv)

T.L. Taylor has been among the best analysts of the media we have had over the past decade. Now she turns her exacting but always entertaining scrutiny to e-sports, with all the power we have come to expect of a participant observer of the highest order.

(Toby Miller, author of Makeover Nation)

In Raising the Stakes, T. L. Taylor does exactly what the title promises by giving us the first serious academic take on the world of competitive e-sports. She touches on every aspect of the new cyberathleticism, always carefully balancing enthusiasm and skepticism.

(Henry Lowood, Curator for History of Science & Technology Collections, Stanford University)

This book is about much more than the e-sports scene. T.L. Taylor uses e-sports as a lens for looking at the confluence of social, cultural and technological practices that are reshaping human interaction as digital culture at both the local everyday level and at the broader level of global techno-politics.

(Bart Simon, Director of the Centre for Technoculture, Art and Games, Concordia University, Montreal)

… Taylor has given us a great account of an exciting part of gaming culture.

(Faltin Karlsen 1900-01-00)

While Raising the Stakes fits neatly within the gaming studies or media studies genres, it is also an exciting and novel contribution to the growing body of work in what might be termed global technology studies.

(Jenna Burrell Contemporary Sociology)

Raising the Stakes is a must not only for game studies but also media and internet studies researchers as a wonderfully nuanced study of century-first digital play-based in DIY, grassroots ideology-in the face of burgeoning leisure commercialization. Play on.

(Game Studies)

Esports is a fascinating collision of new technology and culture with traditional sports structure, and is a phenomenon that could only happen in the present. There is a growing body of research around the growing esports phenomenon, and this book provides a great primer into the academic perspective on the emerging culture. In my opinion, this is the book to refer anyone to who is interested in understanding esports -- for both newcomers and veterans.

(Timothy Young Day9)

Taylor's book is a valuable piece of scholarship that lays the groundwork for further investigation into all aspects of video games as sport and players as athletes.

(Steve Jacobs American Journal of Play)

About the Author

T. L. Taylor is Associate Professor in Comparative Media Studies at MIT. She is the author of Play Between Worlds: Exploring Online Game Culture (MIT Press).

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press; 1st Edition, 1st Printing edition (March 23, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262017377
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262017374
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,275,167 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

T.L. Taylor is Professor of Comparative Media Studies at MIT.

Dr. Taylor is a qualitative sociologist working in the fields of internet and game studies. Her work focuses on the interrelation between culture, social practice, and technology in online leisure environments. She has spoken and written on topics such as network play and social life, values in design, intellectual property, co-creative practices, avatars, and gender & gaming.

Full information about her work can be found at her website - tltaylor.com

[Photo credit: Bryce Vickmark, http://vickmark.com]

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
'Written with a bit of analytic and philosophical wit, Taylor covers various and important aspects of eSports history, culture and what was needed to bring it all together.'

I've gone into reading this book with two minds: first, as a gamer and lover of eSports with several years experience in online tournament play; second, as a fourth year undergraduate student of philosophy. I would say that both my mind as a gamer and as a philosophy student were graciously satisfied in reading this book. If you're a fan of philosophy, particularly within the realm of game theory, then there's something for you in this book. If you're a fan of eSports, then there's something for you in this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Grillz9909 on May 22, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this book out of desperation. I really wanted to write about the topic of e-sports and needed a good source. Wow. What a thorough book. It has so many citations and sources that I literally stopped reading the words in parenthesis (after a while).

It gives a great introduction to e-sports and backs up everything with facts and data. This book is just full of useful (and probably important) info on the gaming culture. However, I guess I just didn't entirely find the point of the book. It's basically like reading an encyclopedia on e-sports. If you're looking for great info- you've found it! If you're looking for an entertaining book with an agenda though, you won't be satisfied. BUT SERIOUSLY- this is like the go to book for this topic. I don't think there is a more thorough or well written book about it. Well done!
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Format: Kindle Edition
I was pulling e-sports research for my thesis when I came across this book as a recommended read from my university library. I am obsessed with Taylor's writing style, fully researched and documented facts, and ability to keep the reader's attention. She has years of research and experience which she conveys in an interesting easy read. This was a nice break from mundane text book research and poorly written blogs, articles. Love this author. Already searching for more of her works.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Provided an in-depth history and analysis of the evolution of e-sports, e-sports media, and business. While slightly out of date, (a lot of changes have happened since it was published) it still encapsulates some of the main fundamentals of e-sports and gaming culture.
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