SBD/Issue 57/Sports Media

Viacom Outlets To Air Special On Pro Video Gaming As Sport

Viacom Planning One-Hour Special
On World Series Of Video Games
A 60-minute special on the World Series of Video Games is set to appear as part of the CBS Sports Spectacular on December 30, marking the “first time that professional video gaming will be broadcast as a sport on network television,” according to Noah Robischon of the N.Y. TIMES. The special, called “They Got Game: The Stars of the World Series of Video Games Presented by Intel,” will be shown across several Viacom outlets, including MTV and CSTV. Games Media Properties President & co-Founder Matthew Ringel, whose company created the event, said, “We’re planting our flag in the ground that this needs to be treated as sports television.” Robischon notes CBS will “only show snippets of actual competitive game play” during the special, as “gory content in the games ... is considered inappropriate for the Saturday afternoon timeslot.” Juma Entertainment President Robert Horowitz, whose company produced the special for CBS, said, “The one hurdle that was a challenge, and is still a challenge for video gaming is you can’t put people shooting at one another on network television” (N.Y. TIMES, 12/4).

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