North American LCS Finals Fight Poster Contest

As you all know, this weekend CLG and TSM will compete to see who is the best team in North America. This, along with the third place match between TL and TIP, will be happening at Madison Square Garden. 

The Garden has a long history of hosting competitions, which made me think of these old school fight posters:

The Contest:

Create your own fight poster in a similar style (can change colors, do whatever) to these ones. Have fun with it. Here's a fun parody example:

It MUST include CLG vs TSM as the main show. TL vs TIP can be included as well, but isn't necessary. 

Submission:

Please submit a link to your fight poster via the contact form on this site. I would suggest using IMGUR to host.

Deadline:

Please submit your poster by TOMORROW, Thursday the 20th 2015 by 5 PM PDT to be considered. 

Award: 

First place will win $20 in RP REDEEMABLE ONLY IN NORTH AMERICA.

Everyone else will win a feeling of accomplishment. 

Note: I reserve the right to redistribute your poster elsewhere, which basically means I'll probably post here or on reddit the coolest ones. You gotta be okay with that. 

Contract Video Producer Position

Just a quick post to say that I'm in need of a video producer located in the Greater Los Angeles area. It's a part time situation - one week could have two days of work, the next could have zero. The ideal individual would be able to shoot anything from a single camera interview to a house tour or feature. Being a skilled editor is also very important. You'll be working with esports content, which is pretty fun. There's also the potential for travel (though not certain). 

Please note that I know there are more than a few ambitious and up and coming esports fans looking to get into the industry, but this position is exclusively for skilled professionals or talented film/video students with experience and examples. 

If you're interested, please email Travis.Gafford (   at   ) cbsinteractive  dot com and include the following: 

  • Location
  • Current state of skill/experience with shooting and editing
  • Day rate
  • Examples of previous work
  • How familiar you are with esports content/the industry, specifically w/ League

Thanks!

Update 1/4/2016: Still looking! If the right candidate is available and things work out, this could potentially become a full time contractor position. 

On the leaked Locodoco Vlog

I just wanted to take a chance to address a few angry tweets I've been getting, including one from Locodoco around my decision to tweet a leaked vlog he did explaining their decision to remove Gleeb from the team and introduce Lustboy to the team. 

For reference: 

Here's his response: 

I also had several other fans write to me to say I shouldn't post it for various reasons, usually because "if it was removed, they didn't want people to see it."

Unfortunately, that's not really how journalism works. This was relevant to a news story that broke today, something that League of Legends esports fans would be interested to hear. I have no obligation to TSM to somehow help in the censorship of that information.

It's actually quite insane to me that people are upset about this. Can you imagine people getting upset at ESPN for reporting on a leaked video about a player trade? This is incredibly standard practice. In fact, some sites actually rip/upload the content to their own YouTube channels and sites. I didn't even go that far. 

Here are several examples in gaming:

http://www.polygon.com/2014/5/28/5757356/battlefield-hardline-trailer

http://www.polygon.com/2014/6/13/5807416/bloodborne-video-ps4-from-software-project-beast

http://www.polygon.com/2013/4/1/4172290/thief-announcement-trailer-leaked

The funny thing is that, in these situations the videos actually got leaked behind the scenes. In the TSM situation, TSM actually officially posted the video themselves before removing it. 

This is standard practice, folks.


I also had some folks say that this probably doesn't help the blacklist situation. 

First off, my responsibility to the League esports audience doesn't change regardless of the blacklist. It's my job to get information to the fans. 

Secondly, TSM blacklisting us will never encourage me to "help" them more. I'm not going to censor myself or help keep information they don't want public secret. I wouldn't want to do that in either situation, but I don't know how people think that somehow refusing to do any interviews or create any content with me is supposed to encourage that kind of cooperation?

The sad thing is, no one wins in this blacklist situation.

I think if you compare our coverage of the Nien/Seraph hand-off between splits to the way the Gleeb/Lustboy stuff broke, it's pretty clear that the organization benefits from getting clear interviews/coverage. The fans benefit with clear video content rather than tweets, Facebook posts, and removed vlogs. Obviously, onGamers gets a chance to cover it instead of me tweeting out a removed vlog. Everyone wins!

Despite this being the second time a member of TSM management has unfairly called me out on social media, I am still more than willing to work with the org in the positive way I work with the rest of the teams in the LCS. I think this is the best way to serve League fans. 

P.S. I have absolutely no beef with the players who I think are great guys and I love seeing at the LCS. As annoying as these situations are, I'm also still not that frustrated with Andy or Loco- I just disagree with their methods of handling all this.

July Vlog and Loot Crate Unboxing

I've noticed Loot Crate sponsoring challenger, collegiate, and high school League of Legends tournaments recently and started to really appreciate their commitment to some of the overlooked areas of competitive esports. I really like their decision to support esports at the grass roots levels and decided to try out their service for a month. 

I also noticed how many other folks have been doing Loot Crate unboxings on their channels and decided to give one a try. 

You can check out Loot Crate if you're interested. The service likely varies in value depending on where you live, but I think it's kind of fun and will look at it mostly as a way to surprise myself and friends with random geeky gifts every month. 

Interviews from LCS Week 8

I was kind of in the dumps about the interviews from week 6 and 7. There weren't really any complaints, but a number of factors that were mostly beyond my control conspired to make them all pretty bleh in my opinion. 

The great news it that the interviews from week 8 were much better in my opinion. In particular, I think the ones with Doublelift, Krepo, and Link are stellar, all on their side of course. Fantastic insight. 

Anyway, last night reddit was pretty clogged up with people fascinated by Vasilii's continued ability to answer questions in english and Sharon calling Lucian Obama so I don't think as many people got to see these as I would have liked. I've reposted them here in one big group for anyone who missed them.

and just in case anyone wanted to see the others...

Thanks again folks. 

The Reddit Ban, Slasher, and onGamers

I don’t tend to write very much, preferring to speak directly to folks through video. I think I’m much better at talking than at writing, but there are occasions where a well thought out and organized post can be a lot clearer than a vlog.

A Few Things To Note:

I have read many conflicting statements in the past couple of days (and further back) about some of the things that I will be writing about here. Obviously, this means that ultimately, many of you will have to decide if you trust what I am writing here or think that I am lying. I can promise you that I will be as transparent as I am capable of being and be completely honest about everything I say. I have always favored transparency and honesty to blanket PR statements or ignoring the community for the full duration of my three years in the industry and will continue to uphold that.

In the past, I responded to people directly in the comments or would write up a couple of paragraphs in a self-post on reddit. I plan to be extremely thorough and discuss several different topics that the recent reddit ban has brought up. Apologies for the –extreme- length of this post. I have broken it up into distinct sections to make reading it as easy as possible.

Finally, please note that everything I write here are personal recounts, statements, and opinions and in no way reflect those of my colleagues or the company that I work for. Let’s dive in.

My Reddit Timeline

I really love reddit. I started going to it after Digg.com started to die and when I began to get interested in StarCraft 2, League of Legends, and esports in general. It was through reddit that I first met Doublelift and also through reddit that I first dipped my toes into esports content creation, for what I initially thought would be a simple hobby and would later became a career. 

I have been very much tied to the community of players and fans that visit the League of Legends subreddit for the past three years. I think it is important to make a distinction between my connection with reddit.com and my connection with the League of Legends community that exists there.

When I create content for fans, I don’t tend to think of it as “Oh, this will be something that the reddit website will appreciate.” I think of the people that visit that subreddit and the comments they’ll leave and hope they’ll enjoy the video. I view the reddit website as the pipes through which I can deliver content to people who appreciate it: those are the people I try to connect with. This is important to bear in mind as we discuss any “departure from reddit” or the idea of my content not being viewable there.

This doesn’t mean that I am not greatly appreciative of the wonderful community tool that the reddit admins have crafted, simply that I will always think of the people that visit it first.

There has been a great deal of discussion about “Travis getting banned from reddit.” I have read many comments marked with a great deal of upvotes that spread a lot of misinformation on the topic or try to paint me as someone constantly abusing the reddit system to make some great amount of money or something (remember that my very first piece of content, SotL Ep. 1 was posted there the day I made it). I’ll reconstruct the timeline here for clarity and future reference:

First ban August 2012

Shortly after I started producing a lot of interviews, rather than just my show, I was banned. Being still a relative newbie to the scene I had violated reddit rules by asking for upvotes for a couple of my interviews on Twitter. I made this mistake out of ignorance for the rules. It is worth noting that this is something many streamers and tournament organizers did at the time, as the League subreddit and scene wasn’t that large and people didn’t really know it was something inappropriate. This was also before the mods got involved and started educating content creators on the rules.

If you click on the link above, you’ll see the top comment was from Hotshot who vouched that I wasn’t doing this to milk money off the subreddit and had good intentions.

This was a very important moment for my relationship with reddit, as after this I realized how important it was to stay up to date with the rules. /r/leagueoflegends mods from that time and going forward can attest to how I did my best to stay clear on the rules. I also helped educate other people when they came into the scene on how to appropriate use the sub (i.e. Thoorin before he was my colleague).

I apologized to the admins and was unbanned.

Second ban August 2013

This was strictly a false alarm. I had an admin reach out to me and tell me that it was triggered by false reports and had my access to reddit immediately brought back.

onGamers domain ban April 2014

To date, I am personally still not entirely sure exactly what triggered this ban other than that it seems to have been a factor of tweeting reddit links (which had been previously allowed) and alleged vote ringing. I’ll talk more about the vote ringing part down below.

It is important to note that while many members of the onGamers staff were banned in this, I was not shadowbanned.

onGamers domain ban June 2014

This ban was entirely triggered by the actions of one of our senior staff, Rod “Slasher” Breslau. I’ve seen people claim that even after getting banned two months ago, we all decided to try to manipulate or vote rig our way to the top. This is simply not true and it’s pretty easy to show how that’s not the case.

Here is a search for all onGamers domain submissions to the League of Legends subreddit. I encourage you to search through the past several months leading up to our ban. The only thing that seemed to ever reliably hit the front page or get decent upvotes are most (not all) of my LCS interviews and breaking news. Several of my LCS interviews went nowhere, and many of our articles.

Claims that I have been involved in some scheme to get others to submit my own work are also false. If you look at the OP’s on these, they’re a bunch of different people. After the ban came through and I saw what the reddit admin had written, I went through my messages to verify I hadn’t even implied that anyone should submit something for me. The only things I was able to find was a thank you sent to a redditor who had submitted several pieces of my work over a couple of weeks and a request that someone remove an irrelevant champion flair from an interview they had posted because I thought it was confusing people.

In this case, again, I was not shadowbanned.

Final verdict: If you see any reddit comments discussing my “continual banning from reddit” for manipulating the system, the actual truth is that I was banned once for manipulating out of ignorance at the start of my career two years ago, banned another time as a mistake, and was not banned either of the other two times. In my mind, the only bannable offense I’ve had in my tenure as a redditor occurred a long time ago and I’ve since learned.

Vote Rigging

I want to make it very clear that I have never been a party to or have witnessed any vote rigging at the site. There are many right now, including other content creators, who have implied that all of the employees at onGamers are working together to vote on reddit threads to get them to the top.

It’s a very believable scenario (though as I mentioned further earlier, evidence points to the opposite). This was something that the IPL group got slammed for way back in the day. I’ve heard rumors of community managers or social media people at IPL sending out emails with a new reddit thread and asking for upvotes.

Following my ban from reddit two years ago, I became a big advocate of doing things “the right way” and playing within the rules. It’s a very easy thing to drop a reddit link into a large skype group and ask everyone to upvote it. Internally, I have worked to make sure this never happens in any of our skype chats. We have worked with many different freelancers since the launch of the site, not all of whom are well versed with reddit rules. As such, I have worked to be vigilant against this kind of behavior and to help educate when necessary.

What makes this situation so frustrating is that I am completely aware of folks who have run these kind of skype group chats in the past for their sites and have seen at least one comment publically admonishing us for behavior that I do not believe we are guilty of, while being guilty of it themselves.

Rod "Slasher" Breslau

As of today, Slasher is no longer with onGamers. He has made his own statement regarding his departure. Following the initial ban, all members of the site made a commitment to double down on our efforts to remain within reddit guidelines. This involved completely stepping away from submitting onGamers content to reddit and no longer tweeting links to any of our content. This put us at a disadvantage over many other content creators and editorial sites who continue to submit their own content and tweet links to reddit threads to this date.

(As an aside, I was greatly worried about the effects of this, but it seems to have worked out fine. I would actually encourage other notable content creators to follow suit. Being able to tweet links to your own content, at least within the first few hours, very clearly gives you an advantage in the new queue and is unnecessary.)

Slasher is a close friend of mine, but I do have to acknowledge that after all of us agreed to make 100% certain to get out hands-off reddit and make sure nothing like this could ever happen again, he independently took actions that affected every employee and freelancer at the site and scar its brand in a place that hadn’t fully recovered from the drama of the initial ban in April. As Thoorin said during Live on Three tonight, it was hard to come to much of a defense for him internally this week.

All of that said, I would rather discuss what drove him to make the decisions that would ultimately necessitate his departure from the site.

Rod has been a good friend of mine since I first met him at MLG Providence in 2011. He has mentored me in many areas I was lacking and I would not have found the success that I have in the industry without him. I have enjoyed working with him at events and he has also been there for me during a few personal rough patches in the last 18 months. I have met very few people in the industry that have as honest of a passion for the scene and all the titles in it as he has.

When he first started to create content around the League of Legends scene a couple of years ago, people in the League side of the industry looked at the controversy around his breaking stories and said to me, “Slasher just must really hate esports.” I had to inform them they couldn’t be more wrong about anything.

Rod has similar relationships with Thoorin, and Cyborgmatt. I have seen some comments that assert he has somehow become a scapegoat for this situation. I promise you that if there was any injustice in the decision of onGamers management on this issue, the three of us would be stirring stuff up like crazy and would not have accepted it.

I personally wish that I did not have to comment on the departure of a colleague at all, but his high profile in esports has created quite a discussion.

I will continue to consider him a close friend and sincerely hope the best for Rod and really hope our career paths cross again in the future.

Reddit’s Role in Esports Journalism and Editorial Sites

I think it is very unfortunate that the current ecosystem for content has brought us to this point. As I discussed earlier, reddit has been a huge boon for content creators and has helped launch my career. It’s a great tool for communities. Unfortunately, for many of those esports communities, it is also the central gateway for content. This whole topic could be a very lengthy editorial in itself, and many others have written, and will continue to write, their own opinions on the subject. I’ll share my own thoughts and theories on the situation here, for context.

When reddit was first created, the idea was that fans of technology, sports, video games, etc. could come together into groups to share cool articles/videos/images and more with each other. All these genres existed before reddit’s existence and all the Engadgets, ESPN’s, Kotaku’s, GameSpot’s, and other major editorial sites had their own communities and were completely sustainable before it really blew up.

While esports has also been around longer than reddit, it’s very hard to argue that the major explosion that came along with the creation of things such as StarCraft II, League of Legends, Dota 2, and Twitch happened after reddit became popular.  Many people at these companies and individuals in these scenes (pro players, casters, etc.) started to engage and even funnel their audiences into these communities. This created a fantastic concentration of fans that allowed tournaments to get attention, projects to get crowdfunding, and content creators to get noticed.

I have spoken of the downsides of this situation specifically in the League of Legends side of things for a while. Back when I felt the moderation of the subreddit was poor, I championed the idea of the /r/summoners subreddit. Many have pointed to the existence of TeamLiquid in the StarCraft scene and feel it proves that a viable alternative to reddit can exist. It’s important to note that TL existed before the SC subreddit as a SC: Brood War website. Montecristo has also recognized the issue and has hopes to address it with the newest version of ggChronicle, though the reboot is still in early days and doesn’t have enough of a community yet to push hard traffic from what I can tell (though perhaps that will change).

All of this is necessary to help people understand that when they see claims that large percentages of our traffic (most of them vastly overestimated, by the way) come from reddit. This isn’t because the entire business model of the website banks itself on 'milking reddit for views' but rather due to the fact that the hardcore esports community lives on these subreddits for the most part, especially with /r/leagueoflegends. If you are making content for hardcore esports fans, you can bet that if it’s high quality you’re going to get a ton of your traffic from these communities.

Discussing a departure from reddit or not worrying about getting content seen there is virtually synonymous with a discussion of removing your content from the eyes of the hardcore and most dedicated fans.

Ironically, the very editorials that admonish esports sites for having a huge amount of their traffic from reddit will likely get most of their views from reddit themselves.

The State of Esports Journalism and Editorial Content

I’m not sure what the absence of reddit traffic directly to our site means for onGamers. I’m not involved in those calculations at CBSi, though I’m sure it can’t be good news. IGN was banned from reddit for a long time but their YouTube videos were still allowed to be submitted to reddit, so I suspect that fans of my LCS interviews and event coverage will still be able to enjoy them on the league sub.

I’ve seen comments in the past from people who aren’t a fan of my colleagues (or our video player, heh) say that I should leave the site and go somewhere else.

First off, I just want to say that I really like working with my colleagues (though we often have very differing opinions) and really enjoy working for CBSi. That being established, I think people look at the stuff that Riot, Valve, professional teams, and other big companies do and don’t really take note of how behind the journalism side of the industry is.

A good example is the upcoming 2014 League of Legends worlds. The event is taking place across three countries, over five weeks. If I want to provide floor coverage of the whole thing at reasonable levels of quality, I’m unaware of any strictly editorial site that would allow me to do that. I think CBSi is my best chance at being able to support myself and the content I create in this way. I don’t think fans remember what my content was like and how few events I could go to before GameSpot/onGamers. The only international travel I ever managed before then was a week-long trip in Korea that was kickstarted by the League community and looking back now, I’m still embarrassed by the quality of that content (hello handicam!) that I produced there.

I don’t think that this is a complete doomsday scenario necessarily, but I work every day to make sure that CBSi’s bold investment into esports journalism and editorial content doesn’t fail. I firmly believe that esports needs a thriving journalism and event coverage sector in its ecosystem and we’re not even there yet.

Conclusion

I know this whole situation seems pretty light-hearted and it’s easy for folks in the industry to poke fun at the whole thing, but the situation doesn’t seem great right now. I work with a lot of people who I would never want to see out of a job and I really would like to see this “whole esports journalism and editorial content” thing succeed. I just want to create cool content for you guys.

Thanks for all your support.

-Travis Gafford

 

My New Razer Blade

If I hadn't gotten into gaming, I probably would be working somewhere in technology right now. I'm a huge tech nerd and listen to tech podcasts, read tech news, and frequently have to stop myself from hitting the "Buy Now" button on new gadgets at Amazon. 

All of this means that one of the coolest perks of my job is getting to try out cool tech from various esports sponsors that send something my way. Last year Razer sent me the coolest (and most generous) gift I had gotten in my career in the form of their 2012 Razer Blade. I did an unboxing video of it at the time, but didn't really know how much I would really enjoy it. 

I ended up loving it. 

I can legitimately say that. A lot of gaming notebooks I had tried in the past felt clunky, large, too hot, too loud, etc. The Blade seems to deal with those problems in the most elegant ways. Though I've always dissed Macs, I always felt like their Mac Book Pros were beautiful and wished that there was something that came close to that in the PC side of things and discovered within the first month of using my Blade that something like that existed. 

Anyway, a year later my contract with them for the Blade was up, and I reached out to them again. They once again were incredibly generous and sent me a brand new Blade Pro 2014. I did a video where I talk in more depth about it, but based on my experiences with it, I would recommend it to anyone who can afford its (admittedly large) price tag. 


Getting Into the LoL Esports Industry

I wrote this article over a year ago, originally for RTS Guru. I've rehosted it here, as I doubt it gets much backtraffic on their site. It does look much better there though, so feel free to read the original post on their site

Originally Posted June 3rd, 2013:

Sorry for the delay in this week's blog entry, but I was a little distracted by planning for the All-Star coverage. In fact, I'm writing this while on a plane to Shanghai, where I'll have the privilage of covering the event and interviewing top players from all the major LoL eSports regions while getting paid to do so thanks to GameSpot. Two years ago this week I graduated from Long Beach State University. So how did I manage to swing this?

Hands down the most frequent question I get from LoL eSports fans is some variation of "How do I get a job in eSports?" Some ask where they can write, how they can become a journalist, how they can get content they're already working on to get community views, etc. I've been meaning to either make a vlog or write something up that I can refer people to when they ask questions like this. Maybe I'll make a video in the future. For now, here's something written.

Let me start of by explaining why I can't give you my secret formula to success - I don't have one. My current situation is a mix of luck, opportunity, persistance, passion, and hunger. When I started doing my show and creating content, there wasn't much out there and I filled an existing content void. The scene is much different than it was two years ago. It's grown a lot, so there are certainly more positions- however there are already many entrenched players/organizations and much more noise that you have to break through. /r/leagueoflegends is a good example of this situation. When I started SotL, you could pretty much get anything relevant to the front page. Now getting something new to the top 25 is much more luck based.

Really the best I can do is offer several bits of advice that you can apply as needed to your personal situation. I also want to add that you should never get into eSports with the sole intent of making it into a career. You can hope and try to turn it into a career, but for the reasons I previously explained, it's never a good idea to bet it all. Approach it like a hobby/volunteer thing that you like to do in your free time. Don't quit/stop looking for the day job. Just like Hollywood, you can't just choose to make it your career on day one.

Figure out what you can do.

This is really priority number one. What are you good at? Are you good at analyzing the game and do you have the high league score to back it up? Are you charismatic and a good talker? Are you a great writer? These are some of the more obvious traits, but there are also more subtle ones: graphic/website skils, video editing, management, marketing- eSports is an entire industry and there's a lot of different talent needed.

I've mentioned this previously, but Doublelift (embarassingly enough) was the first person to suggest that I actually do something in eSports when I told him how envious I was of his situation. I remember that the first thing he told me wasn't, "You should just try and get a job in eSports." It was, "You should use the skills from your communication degree to interview people." Even if you don't ultimately want to keep using that specific talent, try it out in the short term. You might find it more enjoyable than you thought, you'll be helping out the eSports scene by doing so, and it'll help you get connected and known.

Look for gaps in the scene.

I started State of the League because I thought the LoL eSports scene was boring compared to the StarCraft 2 scene at the time. I didn't know what any of the players were like, who to root for, why top players did what they did, etc. I felt that a show that allowed players to show their personalities by interacting with one another, all while sharing information with the community was something the scene needed and didn't have. Look at your talents/skills and think of how you can use them to help fans, industry folks, etc.

Graphic artists might looks at pro streams and feel like they need better overlays. Aspriring journalists might look at something like the Challenger scene and feel that there is a lack of coverage for it at the moment. IT/network people might want to help players and amateur tournaments DDOS proof their setup. The list goes on and on.

Reach out, be persistant, but not annoying.

It's very difficult to get anyone's attention. Industry folks are busy and the community has a flood of content to keep itself occupied on most days, but you'll need at least someone (fans, pro players, etc.) to start paying attention to you if you hope to get anywhere. Unfortunately, you have to be willing to find that fine line that exists between persistancy and annoyance. You have to convince someone that you're worth their time without bothering them so much that they just default to ignoring you.

Depending on what you want to do, you'll need to figure out who you need to reach. Once you accomplish that, think of the best way to approach them. If your first attempt doesn't yield results, try again. For industry figures, I can personally say that I accidentally blow off many of the messages I get each day because I'll get them at an inconvenient time, and then it'll slip past me. Content creators need to reach fans. As I previously mentioned, the LoL subreddit is a mess these days. It's hard to get good content up there. You should certainly try, but don't be afraid to look at other places like /r/summoners- or write for an organization site like Dignitas, CLG, TSM, or Curse properties.

Listen to the feedback, but act on it only if you agree.

This is a pretty complicated one, especially if you're a content creator. Once you start doing something, creating something, or something something, you're going to get feedback from people. A lot of this stuff is great, but a lot of it will also probably be conflicting. I was overwhelmed by the different feedback I got when I started State of the League.

Eventually you have to realize that whatever you're doing is your vision for yourself. You can't please everyone and you'll stress yourself out too much if you try to. Just listen to what people tell you, consider if you think they're right, and then iterate based on that. I can also tell you that you'll probably be able to figure out half of the improvements you need on your own. Whatever changes you're making to what you're doing or creating should feel natural and obvious once someone suggests it to you or you think of it yourself.

Don't be a dick.

This should be super obvious, right? I have seen so many people start doing decent things in League of Legends eSports (and other eSports scenes) only to be swatted back down when they act like an arrogant ass: they're rude to people, they call folks out on Twitter, or they act like they know better than anyone and don't need to bother even listening to feedback at all.

Friends of mine in the industry can tell you that if I think you have potential or are already doing something cool, and I like you, I'll do whatever I can to help you succeed. Sjokz certainly got to where she is based on her own talent, skills, and determination, but I also did everything I could to help her along the way. I think most, if not all of the frequent Whose League Is It Anyway guests would tell you the same thing about me. Likewise, a lot of people have helped me.

This seems to be a common eSports industry attitude, and the first people I met that probably exemplify it the most are the folks over at Day[9]tv. They helped me make connections and are still down to help me with anything if I need it. Management and team owners for TSM, CLG, dig, and CRS have also helped me a lot.

Likewise, if I think you're a tool and you're going to do more damage than good, I'll do whatever I can to prevent you from succeeding, as will many others. I think a lot of times people underestimate how much power one or two key voices have. It's okay to annoy people, but don't act like a prat. All of us in the industry are very proud and protective of it.

There's a lot of other random tidbits of information about the industry that I or others could tell you, but I think this covers the big points that you'll need if you're looking to get into the scene. It's not easy these days, so please don't quit your day job/school/leave your home etc. Just start small and see if you can grow it organically. Good luck!

Further Reading: