It is little wonder to anyone who’s watched any eSports that the entertainment medium is growing. Twitch.tv just recently announced that it now streams 12 billion minutes of video content per month to 45 million unique monthly viewers, a 2x growth over 2012’s year-end stats. Those metrics measure streaming as a whole, but the competitive gaming scene has grown its own niche and is clinging on tight.
Online gaming service Raptr has come out with some interesting data regarding consumer spending on video game hardware and software. Headlining this data is information that 74 percent of gamers plan to upgrade their PC hardware and/or console within the next 12 months.
On May 15th, the current net neutrality rules are going up for preliminary vote at the FCC. This initial vote is only a step in the overall process for the unfair segregation of web traffic to come to life. Our first article broke down the basics of what is in flux, so if you're unsure of what's going on, that's the place to check first. Our second article was a short opinion piece (read: doused in sarcasm and lit aflame with satire) on Chairman Tom Wheeler's response to "reassure" us.
We felt that we should give readers a decisive guide to voicing views and making a difference. Reddit has good recommendations from people who are, and were, involved in the government. Their insight is invaluable to those wanting to do something helpful. Some of the basics are calling the FCC, contacting your Congress and Senate Representatives (they work for you, so use them), and a few other ways to get your voice heard. When reaching out to representatives, one of the most important things to remember is to be polite, professional, and friendly so that you are taken seriously; the people answering the phones are likely interns of some variety -- they'll mark your comment down, ask your name and zip, and then hang up. No need for aggression. Short of money, the means through which most lobbyists get their way is because there is not a big enough outcry from the public to counter them, or those who do complain aren't taken seriously because of how they object.
If you've followed our coverage of net neutrality proceedings in the
After the FCC's proposal to allow ISPs the dictation of "normal speed" and "low-speed" traffic in the form of extorting content providers (Netflix, YouTube), internet backlash has prompted a disingenuous addendum by the Commission. Federal Communications Commission Chariman and mendacious troglodytic neophyte of technology Tom Wheeler is reported to have added to his plan:
After our earlier posting about Google's intentions to move to several large cities in
In an official statement today, the Town of
Two things are going to be happening this year for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that will directly affect the internet and its present management. The first is the upcoming preliminary vote on the revamped rules of “net neutrality” on May 15th; the second has to do with the merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable, which would give a 40% userbase share to an ISP that already has a history of throttling users and businesses.
Game industry visionary John Carmack, one of the founding developers of id Software, recent departed ZeniMax to work for Oculus VR on the Rift and other technology. Carmack's primary stated reason for his departure was a lack of support and interest on part of Zenimax in virtual reality technology. Last week, ZeniMax alleged that Carmack brought over internally-developed tech to the rising virtual reality giant, Oculus VR, recently acquired by Facebook.
Finally, a game industry analysis has been published that includes digital sales and transactions. The industry has endured countless misrepresentative reports that only accounted for physical product sales (which are, quite obviously, down considerably with the evolution of that new-fangled "Internet" thing—we really need to get one of those "websites").
The NPD Group has released its latest Games Market Dynamics (US edition) report, emphasizing a total of $2.87 billion in spending from US gamers in Q3 2012; of the $2.87B reported, a total of $1.4B was diverted toward digital purchases and game subscriptions or DLC transactions. Physical products are still clinging for life, though, and brought in $1.07B in spending; used games and rentals made up the remaining $399 million. At the time of writing, we are unsure if this data includes Steam's sales metrics, though we have reached out to the NPD Group for comment. (Update: NPD notes that Steam does not release official sales details, so they have estimated for digital consumption through Steam).
The South Eastern parts of the US don't have much in the ways of technology conventions (unless you count guns and technological advancements in the 'grits' department), but between ECGC, X-CON, CGS, and the incumbent DragonCon, we've seen evidence that there's room for growth.
Our friend and developer of Digitanks is offering his game up for free as a protest of SOPA and PROTECT-IP, the two internet censorship bills that are being combated today.
"I encourage everybody to pirate Digitanks for free. If this legislation passes then I won’t be able to make a living on the internet, so you may as well pirate my games," Jorge Rodriguez, developer of Digitanks, posted on his blog.
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