Inside ESPN's exit from dedicated esports coverage and what it means for media

ReKTGlobal esports team

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When live sports paused in March, sports-media outlets like ESPN
looked to esports to fill some of the gaps.

The network covered championships, livestreaming contests on
Twitch, and expanded into general gaming coverage.

So, some ESPN staffers were shocked when they were told earlier
this month that the company was shutting down its esports division,
as a part of a broader round of layoffs. 

My colleagues Dan Whateley and Ashley Rodriguez spoke with
laid-off employees and industry insiders about ESPN’s abrupt

“It was kind of shocking,” one laid-off staffer said. “All of us
working for esports thought we were working on building something
that was very important for ESPN’s future. We really showed that
during the pandemic.”

Ultimately, insiders said that business problems at ESPN beyond
the pandemic got in the way. 

Esports was a harder sell for sponsors than other major sports
which had much larger followings at ESPN, two sources said. 

An ESPN spokesperson declined to comment on the financials but
said: “Our dedicated, daily esports coverage ultimately was unable
to achieve the reach or scale to break through or make a meaningful
impact, so we’ve made the decision to put resources elsewhere.”

Though the spokesperson said ESPN would continue to cover
esports in some capacity, insiders said they were skeptical the
company could maintain a meaningful foothold.

“Esports is essentially over at ESPN because of the cuts they’ve
made,” a second laid-off staffer said.

Read the full story here

YouTube star breaks down how much money he spends on videos with
expensive stunts

Team RARSome mega YouTube
creators like Carter Sharer and MrBeast are growing their channels
and gaining millions of views by spending money on things that will
“wow” their audience and drive clicks. 

I spoke with Sharer about his filming and planning process.

Sharer’s big-budget videos feature expensive stunts like filling
a swimming pool with liquid nitrogen or building a massive
trampoline tower.

For Sharer, a mansion with an Olympic-size swimming pool and a
full-size tennis court also acts as a backdrop for his videos. 

Recently, his team worked on a video series where they built a
two-story store in the house. The total cost for the series was
around $18,000, Sharer said, and the video has 694,000 views.

Read more about Sharer’s business here

founders of a TikTok influencer house share the exact 17-page media
kit they use to get brand sponsorships

Honey House TikTok influencer house

The “oldest house on TikTok,” The HoneyHouse, is one of the many
new influencer collab houses to spring up this year.

The house currently has eight members between the ages of 26 and
32, and is based in Los Angeles.

My colleague Sydney Bradley wrote that the house will rotate
locations and members will only live in those houses for a 30-day
period of time. 

The group shared the 17-page media kit it uses to pitch brands
and explained its pitching strategy, including how much it charges
for sponsored content. 

In the pitch, HoneyHouse includes a menu of sponsorship options,
which range from $5,000 to $250,000. 

Check out HoneyHouse’s media kit here

Amazon warehouse worker became a TikTok star by secretly posting
videos of his job 

TikTok Amazon ThePackman123

An Amazon warehouse worker became TikTok famous after he
uploaded videos of himself packing boxes.

Dan spoke with the worker, who is known as “The Packman123” on

“I wanted to show my friends and family how I do my job,” he
said. “How packing is inside of Amazon.”

ThePackman123 now has around 600,000 TikTok followers.

But he has run into problems with Amazon’s HR over his TikTok

Check out the full story here

More creator industry coverage from Business Insider:




This week from Insider’s digital culture team:


fans are furious that Lisa Frank is collaborating with Morphe after
they helped raise over $370,000 to create ’90s-themed makeup that
was never released

Lisa Frank is collaborating with Morphe on a colorful
’90s-inspired makeup line.

Though many beauty enthusiasts said they were excited to relive
their childhoods through the collection, others said it was a
painful reminder of a past attempt at Lisa Frank makeup.

Amanda Krause from Insider reported that in 2017, an independent
beauty brand raised over $370,000 to create Lisa Frank makeup —
and when the deal fell through, thousands of backers were left
without products, information, and the money they donated.

Several of those backers told Insider that they were furious at
Lisa Frank for what happened and that they likely wouldn’t support
its newest makeup line.

Read the full post here.

More from Insider: 

Jeffree Star poses for photos at Cosmoprof at BolognaFiere Exhibition Centre on March 17, 2018 in Bologna, Italy.
Here’s what else we’re reading: 

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Inside ESPN's exit from dedicated esports coverage and what
it means for media