Dota 2: Kyle Is Going After Streamers to Save the Game

Kyle Dota 2 Omega League Valve streamers
Image credit: WePlay! / Epic Esports Events

Famous Dota 2 caster Kyle “Kyle” Freedman is blaming streamers for capitalizing on the content of others. But hey it’s okay if Valve allows it right?

The global pandemic has affected the entire esports scene, forcing almost all events to turn into an online format. For Dota 2 and its biggest tournament that’s not the case. The International 10 and the next competitive season are still uncertain. Furthermore, Dota 2 is losing players amidst a global pandemic and it might be a direct result of Valve inability to make a decision.

Tier 2 teams in the competitive scene are already suffering as they’re unable to sustain themselves during the crisis. Reality Rift had to recently release their Dota 2 team due to various reasons.

There are multiple reasons of a similar importance that led to that decision:

-Travel restrictions resulted in team management and training difficulties
-Low effort management of the esports scene from Valve
-Budget pressure on core business of Reality Rift (gaming arena in Singapore) due to covid restrictions in retail

As we’ve already mentioned there’s still no word on The International 10. Dota 2’s biggest event is pretty much a no go for 2020 and all the signs point it’ll be delayed at least until 2021. What many of us were hoping for this fall was the new Dota Pro Circuit (DPC). Unfortunately, Valve pulled the “we’re not willing to commit to a date due to COVID” card.

This left many fans wondering. Sure it’s clear about The International, the prime event in Dota 2 can’t simply go online and most of the player base understands and accept that. The DPC on the other hand is a different scenario. Valve was already planning to implement regional leagues with the next competitive season. As a result of the global pandemic, we got to see those in third party events as effectively all of them were regional ones with some of the best teams participating.

So why is Valve refusing to make some official online leagues or events to kickstart the DPC? We really don’t know.

Kyle Blaming the Streamers

Kyle has been a part of the Dota 2 scene for quite some time, initially as a player and now as a full-time talent. So why is he angry at some of the biggest streamers all of a sudden? According to Kyle it’s not about the viewership but the exclusivity and some streamers are “capitalizing on content made by others”. He’s of course talking about the OMEGA League that is currently underway.

Valve have adopted a free for everyone policy as even the official games part of a third-party event can be broadcasted by anyone.

The second issue is regarding who is permitted to cast off of DotaTV. We designed the DotaTV guidelines to be flexible in order to allow for up and coming casters, or community figures like BSJ or Bulldog that occasionally watch tournament games on their channel, to be able to stream off of DotaTV. It is not to allow commercial organizations like BTS to compete with the primary stream. It’ll be our judgment alone on who violates this guideline and not any other third party’s.

Kyle argues that at this point, streamers should be considered a commercial entity as even if indirectly they’re causing harm to the Dota 2 tournament by taking away viewers and exclusivity. On, one hand Kyle has a point, on the other is it really the fault of streamers? It quickly becomes apparent that it’s another issue Valve should try to address in the near future.

We really don’t want to bash Valve, but the company has a reputation of only taking action in extreme cases. Let’s hope that this time it’ll be different as the competitive future of our favorite game remains uncertain.

What do you think about the whole matter? Should Valve make broadcasting exclusive to tournament organizers? Share your opinion on our Facebook page!

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