Blum told eSBR that the “PRC is designed to stand apart as a wholly independent resource center for players to find the type of content and service providers they desperately need.”
Snoopeh draws heavily on his own experience of dealing with being a professional eGamer.
“One of the reasons I’m so passionate about helping get the PRC off the ground is that when I first went pro, I was taken advantage of because I didn’t know any better,” Ellis told ESPN.
“I was fortunate to find mentors quickly that helped me understand the industry, but most players will never get that opportunity and can be taken advantage of for some, if not all of their very short career spans. I hope the PRC can provide resources and tools for aspiring or current professional players to become better informed about matters which can significantly impact their career.”
— Stephen Ellis (@snoopeh) April 19, 2016
The PRC will connect players with free professional information, and make the introductions they need to help them manage their careers and prepare for life afterwards.
Growth in services but no profit intentions
Blum is optimistic that the PRC could grow to provide even more services.
“We’ve discussed the long term potential to put on events similar to the player symposiums that exist in traditional pro sports,” he explained to eSBR. “There could also be a fund to enable newer, less financially successful players to hire one of the service providers to assist them beyond the pro bono consultations covered by the PRC.”
The PRC concept is reminiscent of the commercial organization, Poker Royalty, which actively helps to manage player careers, organize sponsorship opportunities, and help with financial planning.
Blum rejects the idea that the PRC should become equally commercial. “While I’m sure the PRC does have the opportunity to become commercialized, I hope that it won’t.”
Shifting the eSports culture
Blum sees the organization satisfying two goals. The first is to get “hundreds of players” to access the PRC’s resources, “enabling them to grow as business people and address the needs of their lives outside the game server.”
Perhaps more importantly, his second goal is to “shift the culture in eSports,” so that players begin to act as professionals in all areas of their lives. “Hiring a financial planner to help secure a player’s financial future or an attorney to protect their interests should become the norm, not the exception,” Blum explained.
One demand the PRC makes of its members is to commit to giving two hours a week of their own time to the organization. The requirement not only encourages greater engagement, but also an opportunity for eSports players to take responsibility for helping other players.
PRC reflects Bryce Blum’s core values
Blum’s legal practise covers all areas of eSports, whether representing players, companies or event organizers.
His bio explains that he “strives to go beyond the typical attorney‑client relationship—his unique level of engagement in the industry where his clients conduct their business allows him to offer valuable insights into his client’s plans, while connecting them with key decision makers that have the potential to impact the success of his client’s ventures.”
The PRC fits well into that business philosophy.
Snoopeh began his campaign on social media
The 23-year-old Snoopeh began his public campaign for more player representation in May last year with a long post on Reddit.
“The player base as a whole still lacks job/financial security, entirely gives up rights of publicity, and have absolutely no voice in the higher-level decision and rule making processes,” he wrote in a post launching a thread on player representation.
“I could go on about some of the problems I see in the current ecosystem,” he continued, “but my main point is this: I’m making it a personal mission to help amateur and professional esports players.”
The PRC is the visible result of that campaign, and in Blum, he has found an influential partner to give the new organization credibility and a real chance of success.