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12/02/21: Vaccaro goes Gamers First; DreamHack Anaheim revs up live plans; UFC enters Warzone

Medias First Morning Read Thursday December 1, 2021 Good morning! It’s Thursday and this is your weekly Esports Brief. NFL safety and former first-round pick Kenny Vaccaro is retiring from the NFL and will now launch an esports organization named G1, i.e. Gamers First in partnership with entrepreneurs and professional gamers Hunter Swensson and Cody Hendrix. “This isn’t a reflex decision for me; it’s something I’ve thought about for a long time,” Vaccaro said in a statement from G1 obtained by 247Sports. “I’ve been a gamer for even longer than I’ve played football, and I’ve always thought of myself as a gamer first. So this is the realization of a long-term dream for me. And while football has been how many have defined me, G1 is evidence for other athletes as well that life doesn’t end just because you put down the helmet. You can reinvent yourself.” COMPETITION DreamHack revealed the first round of content for DreamHack Anaheim, which spans February 11-13, at the Anaheim Convention Center. This event will mark the first in-person DreamHack festival in the United States in two years. Esports offerings will include ESL Challenger CS:GO, a Halo NA Regional Tournament, as well as multiple fighting game championships. Other actions will include a cosplay competition and the Creator Hub. Additional DreamHack Anaheim events will be announced, including BYOC LAN, Expo, Live Music, Indies, Artists Alley, Tabletop Gaming, and more.

The Blast Premier World Final will run sans audiences when it kicks off at the Blast Studio in Denmark on Dec. 15. Running through Dec. 19, the event will feature a $1 million prize pool, and that the company was “confident and committed to delivering this event on LAN with the current COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines in place, but will continue to monitor the situation as it develops and adapt the event to meet all global restrictions and government guidance”.

Meanwhile, Dec. 11-12 sees Ubisoft’s Rainbow Six Siege North American League Finals load up, as the top four teams in the region compete in Spacestation Gaming/DarkZero, followed by Oxygen.

Valorant Champions 2021 notched peak viewership of 690,066, according to Esports Charts. The site reports that the tournament scored average viewership of 506,348 with over 4.5 million hours watched.

The RLCS Fall Major blasts off on Dec. 8, running through Dec. 12 out of Stockholm, marking the first Rocket League LAN event in two years. Sixteen teams are in contention with all matches now being carried on Twitch. The first four matches start at 11a, preceded by a 30-minute preshow.

UFC presents the UFC Invitational Call of Duty: Warzone Tournament, in partnership with BoomTV, with the event set to start at 3p on Dec. 9 on UFC’s Twitch channel. Over 100 streamers, including former UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway, will face off in teams of three in a Call of Duty: Warzone private lobby tournament, including DrDisrespect and FaZe Swagg. “We’re thrilled to partner with BoomTV to host the UFC Invitational Warzone Tournament on our official Twitch channel,” said David Shaw, Senior Vice President of International and Content, UFC. “UFC is always looking for unique ways to engage our fans and connect with them on a deeper level. Our research shows there is a large number of UFC fans who are prolific gamers, so this is a perfect way to reach this audience.”

Riot Games canceled plans for this year’s League of Legends All-Star event as a result of on-going travel restrictions due to the pandemic. In a statement to fans, the company noted that quarantine requirements made hosting the event too challenging for players. A few days earlier, the publisher confirmed plans for one of the biggest esports events in the world returns to North America in 2022 as Riot announced that the 2022 edition of the League of Legends World Championship will run events across New York, Toronto, Mexico City, and San Francisco.

The PUBG MOBILE Global Championship 2021 is underway with $6 million on the line. The PMGC is the world’s biggest mobile esports tournament with teams representing more than 30 countries competing. The PMGC will start with the PMGC League stage on November 30th where 40 teams have been split into two divisions, PMGC West and PMGC East, to play for three weeks. The 16 teams with the most Championship Points will qualify for the PMGC East and PMGC West Finals. The top 16 teams from both PMGC East and PMGC West will then finally collide at the PMGC Grands Finals where one team will be crowned the ultimate winner.

On the college front, the NACE Starleague Grand Finals start play on Dec. 4-5, out of the University of Maryland with 10 teams from colleges and universities from across the U.S. and Canada squaring off to claim championships for Call of Duty, CSGO, Overwatch, League of Legends, & Rocket League. Among participating schools University of Wisconsin-Madison, Louisiana State University, University of Southern California, Michigan State University, University of North Carolina, University of Maryland, Boise State, University of Kansas, Duke, Indiana University, Ohio State University, Kentucky, Miami University, and Virginia Tech.

Meanwhile, a dozen Canadian universities are launching the Canadian Collegiate Esports League, designed to serve as a “unified body for Canadian collegiate esports,” according to Upcomer, offering esports opportunities, competitions and scholarships to Canadian students. The org will also create an official Canadian esports streaming channel titled CCEL TV.

Eredivisie CV, DreamHack Sports Games and MECC Maastricht are teaming up to launch GG DreamHack Sports on June 4-5, 2022 at MECC Maastricht. The event will offer sports & gaming fans the chance to see “the best professional esporters compete against each other, and to translate their online gaming experience into a physical event packed with activities. “Sports gaming is becoming increasingly popular,” said Roger Lodewick, CEO of DreamHack Sports Games. “As DreamHack Sports Games is solely focusing on transforming traditional sports [IPs] into esports, creating and organizing an esports and gaming festival specifically designed at sport and sports gaming is a natural step for our company. We want to bring both the sporting world and the sports gaming world together, cross pollinating the massive fan base of the traditional sports with the agile and young demographic of sports gamers.” STREAMHATCHET Updating and republishing older games is often met with mixed feelings from fans. WIll it be as good as everyone remembers or will the updates tarnish the memories? It’s a fine line to walk but Nintendo has seemingly done so with ease. Pokemon Diamond and Pearl was released in 2006 but has just received a remastered version: Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl. The new release is meant for newer consoles like the Nintendo Switch using updated graphics and character models. The results speak for themselves as viewership of Nintendo titles has skyrocketed following the launch of the latest Pokemon titles.
· Weekly Nintendo viewership has increased 199% since the end of September due to the release of Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl. Many content creators have been streaming their playthroughs leading to a peak of 174K viewers last week.
· Moving forward, Nintendo may be inclined to update more of their previous titles after such success. The remastered games provide a nostalgic experience for older players while introducing younger fans to earlier generations of Pokemon.
· Nintendo may become a premium publisher for brands to work with to reach every demographic within gaming due to their sustained success across multiple titles. Additionally, the publisher just announced more resources allocated towards Super Smash Bros. esports events. SPONSORSHIP & ACTIVATION Aim Lab is expanding its partnership with the VALORANT Champions Tour to include Global Events, Latin America, and EMEA. Through the partnership, Aim Lab will release new products within its training tool specifically for VALORANT fans. With the deal, Aim Lab will release a suite of custom tasks based on the most epic plays of the 2021 VALORANT Champions Tour. Players from around the world will be able to test their skill within custom scenarios from the perspective of the pro players who pulled them off.

FaZe Clan announced the launch of their “Spotlight” campaign in partnership with McDonald’s USA, in a move to elevate diverse voices in gaming. The campaign, which launches December 8, will feature three livestream events hosted by FaZe Swagg and FaZe Jsmooth on their Twitch channels. During the events they will connect with “diverse, up-and-coming streamers – giving them advice on how to become a successful content creator and streamer, from sharing personal stories to giving them tips on how to cultivate their individual brands.” At the end of the streams, FaZe Swagg and FaZe JSmooth will gift the guest streamers with a collection of peripherals to help build out their set ups. JOBS
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JOBS PLATFORMS Content creator/streamer Ludwig Ahgren made headlines this week for moving from Twitch to YouTube Gaming. The announcement video showcased Ahgren switching from a purple to a red car, symbolizing his move. On Twitch, he amassed over 3 million followers.

Epic Games opened the doors to Party Worlds, announcing in a blog post that the virtual realms can be used as locations for players to hang out, participate in mini-games, and meet other players. The first two worlds were designed by fivewalnut and TreyJTH.

The Game Theory $1,000,000 Challenge for St. Jude ended up claiming over $1.6 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital via a 10-hour livestream featuring talent, musical guests and more in honor of Giving Tuesday.Highlights from this year’s stream included interactive competitions such as a crowd-controlled game of Minecraft, paintball artwork, special musical performances, video game face-offs and surprise donations from creators MrBeast, Marques Brownlee, CoreyxKenshin and more! TEAMS Complexity Gaming launched Complexity Stars, blending gaming, esports, professional athletes and celebrities who want to elevate their profiles within esports and gaming through tournaments, content creation, and collaborations with Complexity players and streamers. Complexity Stars will debut with a roster of star athletes from the NBA, WNBA, UFC, NFL, and MLB. The roster of athletes includes former NBA guard J.R. Smith; Olympic gold medalist and WNBA Dallas Wings shooting guard Allisha Gray; UFC fighters Sean O’Malley, Max Holloway, and Megan Anderson; Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette and Baltimore Ravens offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley; and Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Edwin Rios.

A week after revealing plans to operate the first-ever officially licensed championship circuit in North America for both the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and Super Smash Bros. Melee games, Panda Global launched a Kickstarter campaign for their new controller designed for competitive platforms fighting game players. PGhardware, a division of Panda Entertainment, was founded to solve problems in the competitive gaming communities that Panda serves.

Envy Gaming is kicking off a new partnership with pediatric health system, Children’s Health and will produce a Seasons of Giving Stream-A-Thon benefitting Children’s Health tomorrow. The Stream-A-Thon will feature content creators, celebrities and esports participating in a series of challenges and day-long streams to raise funds to be donated to the Children’s Health Medical Center Foundation. Viewers can tune in to the accounts of any of participating streamers beginning at 11a ET. INDUSTRY The Game Awards announced the first musical performance for The Game Awards on Dec. 9, with Sting on deck to take the stage with a live performance of “What Could Have Been” from the original soundtrack of Riot Games and Fortiche Productions’ Netflix animated series Arcane. The show starts at 8p. READYUP EVENTS OF THE WEEK ROSTER MOVES

Christian Bishop is heading to Twitch where he will serve Director of Twitch Properties. He posted that he will be charged with monetization of Twitch’s brands, including staplessuch as Twitch Rivals and TwitchCon.

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What is the name of the van driven by Scooby-Doo and those meddling kids? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company and city).

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In Grand Theft Auto III, Toni Ciprioti was voiced by an actor who also played Mr. Blond in the movie Reservoir Dogs and Budd in the movie Kill Bill. Who was he? Answer: Michael Madsen. Kudos: Luke Watson-Bright Moments/NY; Rob Casalaina-ITN/NY; Heather Allen, WWE Corporation/Stamford; Matt Sautter-WideOrbit/Harrisburg; Rick Dascher-WarnerMedia Studios/Atlanta; Jason Morrow-Toyoya/Houston; Tom Moore-Kalt Productions/LA; David Westberg-SAG•AFTRA Credit Union/Burbank; Lorrie Shilling/El Segundo Cynopsis Team Chris Pursell
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Will develop promotional strategy across all linear & digital platforms and lead a team while working cross-functionally to align and optimize the execution of strategies to drive ratings and business growth. Bachelor’s Degree, min 10 yr. exp as promo scheduling strategist in Broadcast or Cable Network. Expert with GRIP it! Full info HERE (12/17)


Manage all aspects of consumer marketing and development; increase the visibility of its programs. Develop and refine messaging to connect our work with key audiences. Campaign leader for programs, events and initiatives. Manage, mentor and coach junior members. 10+ yrs exp in marketing/advertising position. Full info HERE (12/16)

Create/revise upfront/scatter media plans, account stewardship & serve as agency liaison. Should be comfortable presenting and cultivating agency relationships. A min 5 yrs ad sales/agency exp. Strong written and verbal communication skills, strong media math skills. Proficient in Wide Orbit, MS Suite. Full info HERE (12/15)

Create upfront/scatter media plans, account stewardship & serve as agency liaison. Maintain agency accounts including upfront and scatter order entry, campaign changes, and product allocations. Assist Account Executives and work closely with the Director of Inventory Control. A min 2 yrs ad sales/agency exp. Proficient in Wide Orbit, MS Suite. Full info HERE (12/15)

Selling advertising time, while also providing all necessary sales support functions for Pricing & Planning. Should be comfortable presenting sales & marketing materials and cultivating agency relationships. Experienced candidate will carry a list. 5 years of progressive ad sales planning/support experience. Proficient in Wide Orbit a plus. Full info HERE (12/15)

Conduct research and generate weekly reports on media trends and remain highly informed of trends and developments. Research, evaluate, identify and develop the most relevant topics/issues and propose the most appropriate. Plan and curate Paley Public Programs and other special events. 8+ years progressively responsible leadership required. Full info HERE (12/15)

PALEY CENTER FOR MEDIA/ NYC, NY: Develop, ideate, project-manage, book, and confirm an exciting, influential, and relevant calendar of programs. Book major shows and A-list talent; produce aspects exhibits that need to be coordinated with a network or studio. 8+ yrs of producing live productions and 3+ yrs of project and budget management experience, in a supervisory capacity req. Full info HERE (12/14)


Responsible for establishing, maintaining and building key artist, management, performer, and content owner relationships. In addition, they will develop outreach programs intended to raise the profile and engagement with SoundExchange.” Bilingual: English/Spanish and significant contact base required. A min of 10 yrs experience req. Full info HERE (12/14)


Responsible for establishing, maintaining and building key artist, management, performer, and content owner relationships. In addition, they will develop outreach programs intended to raise the profile and engagement with SoundExchange. A minimum of 7 years’ experience in a senior role at a recognized and established entertainment entity required. Full info HERE (12/14)

Manage multiple aspects of paid campaigns with an agency from strategy to planning & execution. Assist in monitoring & reporting on paid Digital, Programmatic, Search, & Social performance. Partner w/ brand & creative teams to ensure all creative needs for media planning are met. 5+ yrs of work exp. in integrated or digital media planning/buying. Full info HERE (12/13)


Build strategic media plans in response to RFPs and proactive proposal requests. Work hand-in-hand with AE’s on renewals, upsells, make-goods, cancellations, and assisting in development of QBRs. Maintain pricing integrity & utilize historical data to provide strategic recommendations. Min of 3+ years experience working in a similar role required. Full info HERE (12/9)

DREXEL UNIVERSITY/PHILADELPHIA: Drexel University seeks applicants for an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Graduate Program in Television & Media Management. Expectations include inspiring teaching, current industry expertise, and acute attention to diversity, equity and inclusion as they relate to the future of the media landscape. Full info HERE (12/9)


Brainstorm brand IDs, show promos, brand promos and concepts, design style frames, build storyboards, composite and edit videos, animate titles, cut downs for social media and pitch reels. Being quick in providing multiple fresh layout/design within brand guidelines. Background in Graphic Design or Illustration is a very strong advantage. Full info HERE (12/8)


Sourcing/creating assets quickly based on verbal & written direction. Designing & creating enticing graphics for various media. Participate in brainstorms, articulate your ideas in writing, translate that thinking into beautiful pitch decks, & deliver best-in-class brand creative. 2-5 yrs of agency experience as a graphic designer or art director. Full info HERE (12/8)


Manage all aspects of consumer advertising and marketing develop. Campaign leader on assigned projects and initiatives. Execute marketing programs to support specific marketing objectives across different channels and segments. 5-7 years of experience in PR, marketing, social media, advertising in a non-profit, agency or corporate setting. Full info HERE (12/8)


Expertise in editing website in WordPress quickly and efficiently. Ability to create compelling content creation for the website(s). Assist with digital advertising planning and provide assets and assist with coordination of website development. 5+ yrs of experience in digital marketing or communications in a non-profit, agency or corporate setting. Full info HERE (12/8)


Responsible for media planning across all digital properties, including Discovery+ and focuses on pre through post sale campaign stewardship. Serves as a key point of contact with internal and external partners. 1+ year of relevant experience required. Full info HERE (12/7)

Contribute actively to the start-up phase of each search. Gather relevant information regarding the appropriate industries and target companies. Identify potential prospects and sources and validate potential candidates through reference and source calls. Progressive business experience in executive search and undergraduate degree required. Full info HERE (12/7)

Deliver high-impact executive search recruitment research. Manage research projects as needed by proactively identifying and mapping out global talent and organizational structures. Pro-actively utilize research tools to support search execution. Experience in Executive Search, with established success in in-house recruiting and/or Search Firm. Full info HERE (12/7)

Produce News promos, Cold Opens & digital content. Responsible for producing daily topical, tune-in, proof of performance & image on-air promotion spots & campaigns on tight deadlines. Expert at writing, producing and editing snappy, focused and original spots that provide viewers with a compelling reason to turn to PIX11 News over the competition. Full info HERE (12/6)

WORLD OF WONDER/HYBRID/REMOTE: Creating and executing in-show integrations, Branded Content, Influencer Campaigns, and Experiential programs, managing all phases of the entire sales & marketing process from RFP ideation, to execution, and to campaign wrap reports. 3 to 5 years of Account Management or Marketing related business experience. Full info HERE (12/6)

TRIFECTA MEDIA/NYC: Build syndicated TV formats, liaise with outside agencies. Deadline & detail-based work, so accuracy and excellent communication skills are a must. 1-3 yrs experience preferred. Full info HERE (12/5)

Prepare and revise sales plans that maximize the use of inventory while fulfilling agency/client requirements. Manage and process all cancellation and expansion options. Maintain client schedules to ensure delivery of buy, build/schedule ADU packages as needed. 2-3 years of ad sales linear/digital experience. Full info HERE (12/5)

Ensure that all details negotiated are fully executed post sale; ensure all deals are executed correctly and ensure all billing issues with advertisers are resolved. Work as a team to make sure all clients needs are met. Proficient in Microsoft Office Suite and solid presentation skills required. Full info HERE (12/5) OTHER JOBS OF INTEREST

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