Welcome to my blog. This is my first stab at this sort of thing. I plan to make this a regular column/rant block of mine, but as is with all big ideas, it will be easier said than done. I’ve wanted to do something like this for some time now, but typically the idea would strike when I was away from the machine or without time to get it set up; then when I did have some downtime, I instead fretted it away getting owned in the grill repeatedly in Source by some of my old EGLN buddies. Fortunately (or unfortunately, IMO, for whoever decides to read this regularly), both the idea and the freetime required collided this afternoon and this is their lovechild. Don’t worry, the smell will dissipate after a little while.
The ‘kindling’ of sorts for getting this off the ground was my need to get my two cents on the recent casting debacle over at the BF2WT out there without making a debacle of myself on public forums. With my current position being as it is – which is a relative state of limbo as far as eSports and the media goes – it’s not entirely prudent for me to be that big of an exposed critic on what all is going on. But I, like most folks, just want to tell it how it is; this is where I’ll do it.
Look, Stealth (head administrator of the WT) and I have had our run-ins before, remotely. Back a few months when EGLN was becoming EGLN out of BFRadio, we were having our ‘launch party’ and were trying to get listeners and idlers on our stream and on our IRC channel. #bf2 on Gamesurge is a fairly popular channel comprised of BF2 players, so it seemed a good choice to advertise our launch and prize giveaways based on idlers. I was promptly banned by Stealth for the advert and he set the Gamesurge cops on us for advertising some idling contest. While we were out of bounds (as we found out after the fact, reading the TOS carefully FTW), the reaction was kinda harsh…
As I see it, the recent riot over at WT and the subsequent response is just another manifestation of the same hardheaded character I saw out of Stealth just a few months back. What doesn’t make any sense to me is how someone who has enough business sense to bring in sponsors to furnish prizes to a combined tune of 20 grand would make such a baffling decision to continue to ride the sinking ship that is (and has been) BF2 coverage at TsN. Harry is a good guy and an equally good caster, however it’s clear that BF2 has not been a priority for TsN for months now, and while TsN outshines any other organization in existance currently in many other areas, BF2 coverage is not one of them; manifested most clearly in the dismal state of the stream being served up for the coverage of the recent c7 vs HOT match.
From what I read, TGBF (or BFGeeks, or BFTV, whatever you want to call them) didn’t go about it the right way themselves. Instead of keeping their protests to themselves, their own website, or their comms and close contacts; instead we saw a machismo, biker-dude style move to hop in the server and just start casting. Clearly they had some cooperation from the teams, and I’m not going to speculate on how much the teams encouraged it, but it was a move made in poor taste nontheless, and TGBF made it. I’m all for competition in the shoutcasting industry and their look at the medium is entertaining and somewhat refreshing, but you can’t expect to get very far if you blatantly burn bridges like that.
Similar could be said for the World Tournament. Granted, shoutcasting is a non-essential element of online sporting events; matches and tournaments have been and will continue to be played without the presense of a media organization following every match. However, you can’t argue the benefits of media coverage of your event, it increases exposure within the community and also provides any sponsors an opportunity for increased exposure as well. But these benefits only come through quality media coverage, and it’s painfully clear, taking into consideration the entire situation, that WT will not be recieving the quality coverage that a tournament of that calibur deserves unless something moves; that something being a rethinking by Stealth, an adjustment by TsN, or the trifecta of TGBF eating crow, Stealth accepting an apology, and Stealth letting TGBF in.
As it has always seemed to be within BF2, sadly, what’s best for the community here is the most remote possibility.
Until next time.