The gaming industry is the second fastest growing media segment in the world and is expected to reach 100 billion dollars by 2017. Online gaming it at the largest it has ever been and is increasing every day, as a result of this there has been a number of websites that have been developed in relation to gaming and created new platforms for gamers to communicate, educate and share their experiences with fellow gamers.
In this digital age the relationship between the institutions, the e-community and the audience are all essential to how a game is experienced and exerted into modern popular culture.
In League of Legends (LOL) gamers use different online mediums to connect with other players and show off their skills and approaches to playing the game. Websites such as Twitch TV become an opportunity for people with skill and ability to broadcast their accomplishments and provide a live feed of their progress throughout the game.
I found this concept most interesting and before embarking upon this subject and researching this topic I had completely no idea what Twitch TV even was- however it seems to be hugely popular, the total noob in me strikes once again!
These gamers use institutions such as Twitch TV as a public sphere to share their social narratives. The idea that people use exterior websites to watch other people playing a video game is completely foreign to me. Why would anyone do that? Are they doing it to get tips on how to improve their performance? Are they just being a busy body? What is the deal? Why?
On Twitch TV I found a Korean professional LOL player who used Twitch TV as a source of advertisement for his LOL skill. http://www.twitch.tv/soloqnewb. His name is ‘soloqnewb’ and he claims to be ranked 5×5, his tagline states ‘Learn from a pro, play as pro’
Through this he draws audiences into his physical space providing them with a chatroom where they can contact him through instant message as well as providing them with the opportunity to see how he approaches the game, essentially giving a behind the scenes view to what is on his computer screen.
I feel like when you’re browsing on Twitch TV it’s almost as if you are looking from a different point of view. It feels very personal and like a secret inside look, almost like you are looking through the players eyes seeing exactly what they see on their screen – it’s almost creepy and feels like an over-share. Twitch TV creates an interactive platform and essentially is an amazing new media platform, which contributes to the cultural phenomenon of social media and exploring the way in which people interact with one another.
Brightman James, ‘Mobile gaming to push industry above $100 billion by 2017’
Date Accessed: 28/08/2014
Russo Angelica, Watkins Jerry, Digital Cultural Communication: Enabling new media and cocreation in SouthEast Asia, Queensland University of Technology, Australia International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology (IJEDICT), 2005, Vol. 1, Issue 4, pp. 417.