Well-known streamer Cyanide has posted a tweet detailing his visa issues and how the situation went right down to the wire.
It’s the latest example of visas in the UK potentially holding back esports and streaming talent. In recent years, as esports has grown and more events are taking part on our shores, organisations and individuals have had trouble getting talent into the UK to take part in tournaments or work in video games in other ways.
Cyanide’s situation was slightly different, in that he is already based in the UK, but his existing visa was due to run out in December 2019.
He said in a post on Twitter: “In March of this year, in legislative reform, my intended visa type was no longer offered and therefore, I no longer qualified.
“My visa ended in December 2019. I would have been forced to leave my home and the life I have built here in the UK.
‘Many months of research, legal processes, paperwork and constant failure took a toll not only on my professional life, but my mental and physical health.’
Cyanide said it took a heavy toll on him, and while he appeared fine on social media, he was in a difficult place. As he streamed less in the last few months, his subscriber count dwindled.
Thanksfully, this story has a good ending. Cyanide has managed to secure a brand new visa, valid for a couple more years, allowing him to stay in the UK.
He also added he will be streaming full-time for the first time from January 6th 2020, with streams going live weekdays from 3pm.
These last months have been a struggle.
Thank you to those who stuck by, not knowing what was going on under the hood. Love you guys.
Read on, those who will. pic.twitter.com/hOXcqBKhwL
— Cyanide (@zfcyanide)
Earlier this month, the German government introduced an esports visa, raising further questions around the UK’s lack of a specific esports visa.
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
A keen League of Legends and World of Warcraft player, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He works as full-time content director for the British Esports Association and runs ENUK in his spare time.