ESPN President on Twitch/Amazon Deal: Whatever, eSports Aren’t Real Sports Anyway
Obviously, he is not a golfer.
ESPN President John Skipper didn’t hold back when asked how he felt about Amazon’s nearly $1 billion dollar purchase of online video game streaming platform Twitch. He’s got some feelings about the legitimacy of eSports and online streaming.
Re/code says the question was put to Skipper at the Code/Media Series: New York conference, and his response basically amounted to, “Whatever. We didn’t want it anyway.” He put it a bit less bluntly than that though, saying, “It’s not a sport—it’s a competition. Chess is a competition. Checkers is a competition. Mostly, I’m interested in doing real sports.”
Real sports? eSports are not real sports? (Also, did he just try to categorize chess and checkers together?)
That’s OK. He can keep his real sports. Amazon and Twitch are probably pretty happy with Twitch’s 45,000,000 monthly visitors in 2013, which has only been increasing with new consoles’ abilities to stream directly to the service. Meanwhile, ESPN hasn’t been doing so hot, despite how Skipper also thinks TV is still the only place to watch those “real” sports and online streaming is merely a way to get young people in the door for that sweet, overpriced cable goodness.
Meanwhile, Twitch and Amazon are like, “I’m sorry. I can’t hear you over the sound of counting all our online streaming money.”
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