This debate around esports circles that’s fired up again recently is kinda funny, really.
Please, find me a single industry that works as a complete meritocracy, where ‘who you know’ doesn’t matter at all.
No, go ahead, I’ll wait.
Honestly, the underlying premise of this conversation starter over on Crossfire is utterly ridiculous. A ‘governing body’ for commentators? Let’s replace one ‘old boys club’ with another, shall we?
I tend to draw back to the slightly hung over and tired conversation i mustered with Gonzo at i46. The topic fell upon “big” shoutcasters… he had previously interviewed 2 rather big shoutcasters lets just say and in the most tasteless fashion Gonzo as ever pointed the questions to a area most would tend to avoid, What have you actually done to “nurture” the lower scene of commentators. The answer to say the least was spluttered and avoided but to me it does highlight a real point.
Excluding the typical “so you think you can cast” topic being posted what has the “bigger” commentators done for the up and coming few. I think a point was raised at Valencia Congress do the shoutcasting community need a governing body to create a portal of newer talent to come through.
If you’re just starting out at something, or even if you’ve been at it a while but haven’t found large amounts of success yet, know that the people that have found success have no obligations to you. None. Zero. Nothing.
It may reflect really well on those people to document their methods, or highlight other good work happening on their social media feeds, or toss the odd last-minute fill-in gig towards someone with less notoriety. But to show up and suggest you’re entitled to all of the above and more; and to suggest that not receiving such treatment from people who have earned their success, but may have just gotten here a bit earlier when the opportunities were broader, is some sort of injustice at the hands of a shadowy guild-like conspiracy; is quite a childish way to look at the scene, and the world.
It’s your job to nurture your own success, not the job of those who have already found theirs. And you may, along the way, run into roadblocks in the form of other people, doing the same thing you are; that’s the reality of being in an industry with a finite number of paying jobs and an ever growing number of people looking to fill them. Do you have the stones to admit that maybe whoever got that gig got it for reasons that have nothing to do with you?
This whole thing is still so very new, and by its very nature stays closer to ‘day 0’ than other new endeavors – the scene is constantly resetting itself in the form of new games coming out and being adopted, with whole communities dotting in and out, or remaking themselves when a sequel hits. It’s because of this that being ‘first’ to something has counted so much towards success.
So you weren’t first. It’s down to you to figure out how you’re going to react to that. This sure isn’t the way.