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12/17/20: eMLS kicks off ’21 plans; Twitch refills Doritos Bowl; Allied Esports rocks around the clock



Medias First Morning Read

Thursday December 17, 2020

Good morning! This is your weekly Esports Brief.
Major League Soccer and Electronic Arts locked in the competitive schedule and new online format for the 2021 season of eMLS, headlined by eMLS Cup presented by Coca-Cola on March 20-21. Competition will occur on EA SPORTS FIFA 21 and will be played exclusively on PlayStation 4 with the entirety of the 2021 competitive eMLS season played online. Two clubs join eMLS next season – Inter Miami CF and Saint Louis City SC – which puts total club participation at 27 while the season will be comprised of three live-streamed tournaments that each take place over the course of two days, doubling the content hours of the 2020 eMLS season beginning in January with eMLS League Series One presented by Coca-Cola.

JLab becomes the official audio and microphone partner of eMLS and competitors will wear JLab Play headphones and use Talk Microphones. Cheez-It & Pringles return as the Official Snack Partner of eMLS and will be the presenting partner of eMLS Player Lounges and eMLS Player Profiles. Coca-Cola continues its partnership as the Official Carbonated Beverages and Water Partner and will be the presenting partner of eMLS League Series and eMLS Cup.

COMPETITION
The LCS seasonal format is getting an update in 2021, with Riot announcing that its regular season will now expand for five games a day for three days a week, running Friday through Sunday, beginning with a condensed Spring Split while the Spring Playoffs and Finals will become the LCS Mid-Season Showdown with the MSS winner earning the year’s first LCS championship title and be the only team to represent NA at the Mid-Season Invitational. The new Summer Split regular season will now consist of a triple Round Robin over nine weeks, capped with the LCS Championship, which pulls the top-seeded teams from Spring and Summer combined. In addition, the company is launching LCS Lock In, a three-week season kick-off tournament.

Esports will serve as part of event programing for the 2022 Asian Games, joining breaking as new entries on the competitive docket. According to Xinhua, the two additional disciplines means Hangzhou 2022 will cover 61 disciplines across 40 sports.

2021 will see the return of StarCraft II & Warcraft III competitions at ESL with qualifiers starting in April and leading up to the next ESL Pro Tour Championship of 2022. The 2021/2022 StarCraft II season will feature four EPT Masters competitions ahead of the EPT Championship in Feb/Match of 2022 at IEM Katowice.

Blizzard announced that with the launch of the fourteenth year of the Arena World Championship, the company is expanding to two seasons culminating in the AWC: Shadowlands 2021 Grand Finals next Fall, with a $900,000 total prize pool up for grabs for the year. In addition, the Mythic Dungeon International is removing regional distinctions to create a global competition with two standalone seasons and one-off tournaments, providing players from around the world multiple chances to take home their share of over $750,000.

The 2021 BLAST Premier Championship will offer competitors a total prize pool of $2,475,000, according to tournament organizers, running from Feb.-Dec. next year. Play begins with BLAST Premier Spring Groups starting Feb. 4.

Supercell rolled out 2021 plans for the Clash Royale League. The league is shifting away from team formats and will now return to individual play with a total prize pool of $1.6 million, earned via a global format that will see eight seasons of open-for-all tournaments. The CRL World Finals, meanwhile, will have 32 players competing for the Golden Crown Trophy.

The World Baseball Softball Confederation Executive Board approved the inclusion of esports as a discipline of baseball and softball. The decision opens the door to future official international competitions and World Cups/Championships for a virtual sport. WBSC President Riccardo FRACCARI said: “The welcoming of esports into the WBSC family comes at a critical time, considering the fast-evolving digital world in which we live and the ongoing global pandemic. The WBSC looks forward to more progressive innovation in the dynamic and youth-focused space of E-Sports, which will potentially expand the reach of our sport to millions of gamers and fans.”

ESL Gaming announced the return of the Northern League of Legends Championship in 2021, with play launching at the start of the Spring Split on January 19. NLC launched earlier this year as the new Northern European Tournament, operated by ESL Gaming through the DreamHack brand. The Northern League of Legends Championship is the official League of Legends esports organization for the Nordics, UK and Ireland.

ACTIVATION
The Doritos Bowl is back, with the brand delivering a three-day tournament featuring the first-ever private lobby for a Twitch Rivals Warzone event and the top 24 teams who qualified for the finals joining names such as TimTheTatman, Swagg and TeePee for a shot at the championship and part of the $250,000 prize pool. “With the major increase in streaming over the past several months and following the launch of the highly anticipated Cold War Black Ops, the stage is set for this year’s Doritos Bowl finale,” said Caio Correa, senior director of marketing, Frito-Lay North America. “Doritos is a brand rooted in next level experiences, so we wanted to build on that within the competitive gaming arena. Giving streamers the chance to compete with huge names and huge stakes will make for no shortage of entertainment.”

Gridiron Gaming locked in Caesars Entertainment to serve as the title sponsor for Smash Bowl MMXXI, putting 32 of the world’s top Smash Ultimate players. In addition to exclusive naming rights, Caesars Entertainment’s title sponsorship includes livestream exposure for all events through ads, product placements and branding; integration into shoulder programming (podcasts and videos); and digital and social media partnership content. The event streams Sundays at 4p on Thunder Gaming’s Twitch channel.

Spectrum Industries signed on as an official partner of Bucks Gaming. As part of the partnership, Bucks Gaming and Spectrum Industries will work together to form a community esports initiative and will collaborate on esports furniture and product design. Bucks Gaming will also work with Spectrum Industries to collaborate on esports furniture and products that best suit professional and at-home gamers’ needs, from comfort to usage.

STREAM HATCHET TRENDS
This week, Stream Hatchet analyzes the top streams based on peak viewers. Live streaming sites like Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook Gaming have a large global presence creating a diverse community on the platforms. Of the top ten peak streams last week, six of them came from non-English speaking channels like NOBRU and TheDonato. While a large portion of viewership on North American streaming sites come from English channels, it would be remiss to ignore the impact the other channels have had. As live streaming continues to become more accessible across the world, larger non-English channels may be perfect for brands to partner with to maintain a global presence.
· NOBRU held two of the top five peak streams last week – one on Twitch and one on YouTube Gaming as the streamer often uses both platforms to broadcast.
· An even split of Twitch and YouTube Gaming channels created the top ten list but oftentimes YouTube Gaming generates a higher peak than Twitch.
· Streamer tommyinnit reached the highest average viewer count of the streams listed with over 189K viewers across 12 hours of airtime!
For more insights about live streaming market share, peak viewers, and other KPIs, please visit www.streamhatchet.com/insights.

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PLATFORMS
Allied Esports is launching a 24-hour cross-channel content strategy on Twitch that will feature hundreds of hours of Allied Esports’ tournament productions and exclusive original content being programmed around the clock across the company’s Twitch channels, including the newly branded “Allied24Seven” channel. The new 24-hour programming schedule, which has generated more than two million live views on Allied Esports’ Twitch channels since a pilot rollout was started in November, will include a selection of recent and classic Allied Esports event broadcasts from North America and Europe.

Esports tournament organizer BLAST inked an extension with Danish broadcaster TV2 for the upcoming BLAST Premier 2021 season. As part of the deal, TV2 Denmark will broadcast all seven BLAST Premier events in 2021 on TV2 ZULU and online platform TV2 PLAY.

TEAMS
Misfits Gaming Group is heading toward ESPAT TV’s Creative Collective, lending its media representation rights across all properties for streaming services and distribution. “While their focus remains on the gaming and esports industry, ESPAT TV‘s influence and prominence spans much further; and that’s why we are extremely proud to call them a partner,” said Ben Spoont, CEO and co-founder of Misfits Gaming Group. “Their distribution is second-to-none and collectively, we look forward to continuing to push the industry forward by reaching new audiences, and creating content that esports fans are excited to watch.”

The Philadelphia Eagles named Esports Entertainment Group as their official esports tournament provider in a multi-year partnership that will see EEG operate biannual competitions played on EA Sports’ Madden NFL title. As part of the deal, EEG will leverage player imagery within the franchise’s regional market and will work with Eagles players to create custom videos that will promote the esports tournaments.

READYUP SPOTLIGHT
INDUSTRY

GameCo is entering into a new partnership with US Bookmaking, a Las Vegas-based sports betting solutions company to launch the first-ever dedicated esports sportsbook in the United States. The initiative will be available digitally at Sky Ute Casino Resort for all players in Colorado. This first-ever dedicated esports book leverages the extensive experience in esports wagering from 10Star, who will provide the odds and trading feed which includes both pre-match and in-play wagering.

The British Esports Association is partnering with Coalition of Parents in Esports in a move designed to help educate and spread awareness of esports. Shae Williams, COPE co-founder and former IBM executive, said: “Like any sport, parental involvement is key to success. We want to encourage parents to get more involved in understanding their child’s passion and helping them get the most out of their esports experiences.”

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SR. MANAGER, COMMERCIAL CLEARANCE
A+E NETWORKS
NYC

Ensure Ads are compliant with A+E’s policies and federal guidelines during content and advertising review. Liaise with internal Ad Sales executives and external Ad Agencies. 5+ years experience, preferably at a network working in Ad Standards & Practices/Commercial Clearance. Strong familiarity with rules including FDA, FTC and FCC regulations, indecency and trade libel. Full info HERE (1/8)

SENIOR ART DIRECTOR >>
A+E NETWORKS/NYC: Creative point in print, promotion, and marketing from concept to development across A&E, History & Lifetime projects. Must be well versed in managing design principles for both print and digital deliverables. Demonstrated hands-on ability to create key art and design projects from conception to completion. Expert in Adobe Creative Suite software and industry standard programs and software. 5 years experience working for network, film or other entertainment outlets. Full info HERE (1/8)


PLAYOUT OP >>
NEWSMAX MEDIA/NY, NY:
Must be able to perform ingest and playback functions during live and pre-recorded programs. Traffics video clips according to shows’ rundowns. Edits content as necessary. Min 3 yrs exp in executing video playback in live control room environment. Plus 1yr exp with Ross Tria or EVS. Full info HERE (1/7)

ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE>>
TELEMUNDO/SACRAMENTO, CA: Responsible for partnering with local clients, both on the agency level and direct, to create innovative and unique mrktg and adv solutions that target a client’s demos and products/services. AE will also need to deliver quarterly results and meeting individual budget requirements. Min 2 yrs direct sales exp with 3 yrs of media sales exp. Full info HERE (1/7)

DIRECTOR, RETAIL DEVELOPMENT, AMERICAS >>
BBC STUDIOS/NY, NY: Resp for building relationships with key retail accounts at the buyer/mrktg levels. Partner with licensee’s sales teams to pre-sell BBCS franchises and meet the needs of key buyers across retail. Build retail strategies that drive brand strategies set by the franchise/licensing teams. 10yrs exp in licensing or entertainment focusing on retail development. Full info HERE (1/7)

TECHNICAL DIRECTOR >>
NEWSMAX MEDIA/NY, NY: Directs, co-develops/delivers locally prod programs and PSA for nat and inter’l audiences. Also oversees prod crew that produces regular, special and live shows related to various political, historical and other appropriate topics. Min 3 yrs exp in directing Live television news, studio-based programming or similarly related professional media productions. Full info HERE (1/7)

VIDEO ENGINEER & ROBOTIC CAMERA OPERATOR >>
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Exp in configuring and setting up all broadcast studio cameras both manned and robotic for daily use. Maintains network-level camera blocking and composition. Monitors/adjusts video signals including cameras, monitors, playback sources, color correction equip/incoming feeds. Min 4 yrs exp. Full info HERE (1/7)

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GFX Op >>
NEWSMAX MEDIA/NY, NY: Must be able to set up and play out all graphic elements which are included in pre-recorded or live programming. Mnge graphic content as it corresponds to live and pre-recorded programs. Satisfy all production req for live and pre-recorded programming under the supervision of the show’s director and technical operations mngmt. Min 3 yrs of exp in graphic and character generation, plus 1yr exp with Ross Xpression. Full info HERE (1/7)

AUDIO TECHNICIAN >>
NEWSMAX MEDIA/NY, NY: Operate/executes audio mixing/creation for live and taped broadcasts, in the context of orig produced programs and PSAs. Collaborate with News depart and prod crew that produce regular, special and live shows. Generate timely and pertinent broadcast material. Min 2 yrs exp in graphic and character gen in television news, creative services, studio-based prog or related profession. Full info HERE (1/7)

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER >>
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Responsible for designing and building shows, managing show hosts and production team, identifying and integrating guests, overseeing and executing the production of key video & graphic elements. 3+ yrs EP exp or political news & talk programming. Full info HERE (1/7)

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER >>
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SENIOR LINE PRODUCER >>
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PRODUCER >>
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Responsible for the production of live news & talk show, and recorded video segments for television, and digital platforms. 3+ yrs in TV news and/or talk production. Full info HERE (1/7)

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DIGITAL MARKETING COORDINATOR >>
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MEDIA BUYER >>
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DIRECTOR, OWNED MEDIA >>
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