GameSpot

Last updated

GameSpot
Logo of GameSpot.svg
Type of site
Video game journalism
FoundedMay 1, 1996;23 years ago (1996-05-01)
Owner CBS Interactive
Founder(s)
  • Pete Deemer
  • Vince Broady
  • Jon Epstein
Website gamespot.com
Alexa rankIncrease Negative.svg 330 (April 2019) [1]
RegistrationOptional (free and paid)
LaunchedJanuary 13, 1996;23 years ago (1996-01-13) [2]

GameSpot is a video gaming website that provides news, reviews, previews, downloads, and other information on video games. The site was launched on May 1, 1996, created by Pete Deemer, Vince Broady and Jon Epstein. It was purchased by ZDNet, a brand which was later purchased by CNET Networks. CBS Interactive, which purchased CNET Networks in 2008, is the current owner of GameSpot.

Contents

In addition to the information produced by GameSpot staff, the site also allows users to write their own reviews, blogs, and post on the site's forums.

In 2004, GameSpot won "Best Gaming Website" as chosen by the viewers in Spike TV's second Video Game Award Show, [3] and has won Webby Awards several times. The domain gamespot.com attracted at least 60 million visitors annually by 2008 according to a Compete.com study. [4]

History

In January 1996, Pete Deemer, Vince Broady and Jon Epstein quit their positions at IDG and founded SpotMedia Communications. [5] [6] [7] SpotMedia then launched GameSpot on May 1, 1996. [7] Originally, GameSpot focused solely on personal computer games, so a sister site, VideoGameSpot, was launched on December 1, 1996. [7] [8] Eventually VideoGameSpot, then renamed VideoGames.com, was merged into GameSpot. [8] In February 1999, PC Magazine named GameSpot one of the hundred-best websites, alongside competitors IGN and CNET Gamecenter. [9] The following year, The New York Times declared GameSpot and Gamecenter the " Time and Newsweek of gaming sites". [10]

On October 3, 2005, GameSpot adopted a new design similar to that of TV.com , now considered a sister site to GameSpot. [11]

A new layout change was adopted on October 2013.[ citation needed ]

International history

GameSpot UK (United Kingdom) was started in October 1997 and operated until mid-2002, offering content that was oriented for the British market that often differed from that of the U.S. site. During this period, GameSpot UK won the 1999 PPAi (Periodical Publishers Association interactive) award for best website, [12] and was short listed in 2001. [13] Following the purchase of ZDNet by CNET, GameSpot UK was merged with the main US site. On April 24, 2006, GameSpot UK was relaunched. [14]

In a similar fashion, GameSpot AU (Australia) existed on a local scale in the late 1990s with Australian-produced reviews. It ceased in 2003. When a local version of the main CNET portal, CNET.com.au was launched in 2003, GameSpot.com.au content was folded into CNET.com.au. The site was fully re-launched in mid-2006, with a specialized forum, local reviews, special features, local pricings in Australian dollars, Australian release dates, and more local news.

GameSpot Japan in its current form launched in 2007. It provides Japanese video game industry news, previews, reviews, features, and videos as well as translated articles from the other GameSpot sites.

Gerstmann dismissal

Jeff Gerstmann, Editorial Director of the site, was fired on November 28, 2007. [15] Immediately after his termination, rumors circulated proclaiming his dismissal was a result of external pressure from Eidos Interactive, the publisher of Kane & Lynch: Dead Men , which had purchased a considerable amount of advertising space on GameSpot's website. Gerstmann had previously given Kane & Lynch a fair or undesirable rating along with critique. [15] Both GameSpot and parent company CNET stated that his dismissal was unrelated to the review, but due to corporate and legal constraints cannot reveal the reason. [15] [16] A month after Gerstmann's termination, freelance reviewer Frank Provo left GameSpot after eight years stating that "I believe CNET management let Jeff go for all the wrong reasons. I believe CNET intends to soften the site's tone and push for higher scores to make advertisers happy." [17]

GameSpot staffers Jason Ocampo, Alex Navarro, Ryan Davis, Brad Shoemaker, and Vinny Caravella also left as a result of Gerstmann's termination. [18] [19] Davis co-founded Gerstmann's subsequent project, Giant Bomb, and was later joined by Shoemaker and Caravella. Navarro became the community manager at Harmonix and in 2010 joined up with Whiskey Media, a family of sites that includes Gerstmann's Giant Bomb site, to be part of their new site Screened.com, focusing on cinema and television. Navarro later returned to Giant Bomb, where he currently works as a Senior Editor.

On March 15, 2012, it was announced that CBS Interactive, the parent company of GameSpot operator CNET, had acquired the Giant Bomb and Comic Vine websites from Whiskey Media. As part of the deal, the non-disparagement agreement between Gerstmann and CNET was nullified, allowing him to finally speak publicly about his termination over four years prior. Later that evening on GameSpot's On the Spot web show, GameSpot VP John Davison appeared on camera with Gerstmann, marking Gerstmann's first appearance on the GameSpot web site since November 2007. In the segment, Gerstmann revealed that his firing was in fact related to the low review score he had given to Kane & Lynch , though his explanation cited other similar events that led up to the termination, including a 7.5 (good) rating given to Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction by Aaron Thomas, then an employee under Gerstmann.

Notable staff

Community features

Forums

GameSpot's forums were originally run by ZDNet, and later by Lithium.[ citation needed ] GameSpot uses a semi-automated moderation system with numerous volunteer moderators. GameSpot moderators are picked by paid GameSpot staff from members of the GameSpot user community. Due to the size and massive quantity of boards and posts on GameSpot, there is a "report" feature where a normal user can report a violation post to an unpaid moderator volunteer. The ostensible purpose of the reporting feature is to deal more quickly with violations of the website's posting policy. GameSpot's ToS states that users must be aged 13 or older to post content and maintain an account. Proof of a user's age when he/she creates an account is not required. Proof of a moderator's age is also not required. All users must agree to GameSpot's ToS (terms of service) during registration. GameSpot's ToS (as they apply to the community forums) give moderators the power to use their own discretion when deciding if a posting violation has occurred.

In addition to the message board system, GameSpot has expanded its community through the addition of features such as user blogs (formerly known as "journals") [23] and user video blogs. Users can track other users, thus allowing them to see updates for their favorite blogs. If both users track each other, they are listed on each other's friends list.

GameSpot formerly had a paid subscription service known as "GameSpot Complete". On February 21, 2006, the paid subscription model was changed. [24] It now maintains two paid membership services: Total Access and Plus. [25]

Total Access is essentially a replacement of GameSpot Complete, as it is the same price of US$5.95 per month or $39.95 per year and offers the same basic benefits. [25] The second premium service, GameSpot Plus, is a cheaper, intermediate-level service. [25]

On January 9, 2013, it was announced that the Paid Subscription model would no longer be accepting new subscribers, and current subscribers would not be able to renew after January 31, 2013. [26]

See also

Related Research Articles

ZDNet Business technology news website owned by CBS Interactive

ZDNet is a business technology news website published by CBS Interactive, along with TechRepublic. The brand was founded on April 1, 1991, as a general interest technology portal from Ziff Davis and evolved into an enterprise IT-focused online publication owned by CNET Networks.

<i>Unreal Championship</i> 2002 video game

Unreal Championship is a first-person shooter video game developed by Epic Games and Digital Extremes, published by Infogrames, and released exclusively for the Xbox. Unreal Championship is essentially a console version game of the PC-based Unreal Tournament 2003, developed specifically to take advantage of Xbox Live, Microsoft's online gaming service. In 2003 Unreal Championship was added to Microsoft's "Platinum Hits" line of Xbox games. It was followed in 2005 by Unreal Championship 2: The Liandri Conflict also for Xbox.

Disney Interactive Studios, Inc. was an American video game developer and publisher owned by The Walt Disney Company through Disney Interactive. Prior to its closure in 2016, it developed and distributed multi-platform video games and interactive entertainment worldwide.

TV.com is a website owned by CBS Interactive (ViacomCBS). The site covers television and focuses on English language shows made or broadcast in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, the United States, and the United Kingdom. It emphasized user-generated content. Australia and UK versions of the website are also available, at au.tv.com and uk.tv.com, respectively.

Jeff Gerstmann American video game journalist

Jeffrey Michael Gerstmann is an American video game journalist. Former editorial director of the gaming website GameSpot and the co-founder/editor of the gaming website Giant Bomb, Gerstmann began working at GameSpot in the fall of 1996, around the launch of VideoGameSpot when GameSpot split PC and console games into separate areas. He shared his thoughts on a variety of other subjects every Monday on his GameSpot blog before his controversial dismissal from GameSpot in 2007 following a review of Kane & Lynch: Dead Men. Complex magazine named Gerstmann in their top 25 biggest celebrities in the video game industry.

<i>Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII</i> 2006 video game

Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII is a flight combat video game for Microsoft Windows, Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Wii. It was developed by Ubisoft Bucharest during the second fiscal quarter of 2006 for both the North American and European regions. The game features 46 different World War II fighter planes and allows the player or players to take part in several World War II events as a fictional squadron. Online support allows 16 players to take part in head-to-head and co-operative battles.

<i>Madden NFL 07</i> 2006 American football video game

Madden NFL 07 is an American football video game based on the NFL that was published by EA Sports and developed by EA Tiburon. It is the first in the video game series to Debut for the PlayStation 3 and Wii consoles as launch titles and the last one to be released on the Game Boy Advance. Former Seattle Seahawks running back Shaun Alexander is on the cover. This is the last game to feature NFL Europe in the series.

CBS Interactive Inc. is an American media company and is a subsidiary of the CBS Entertainment Group division of ViacomCBS. It is an online content network for information and entertainment. Its websites cover news, sports, entertainment, technology, and business. It is headed by Marc DeBevoise.

Planet Moon Studios was a game development studio based in San Francisco, California founded by ex-Shiny Entertainment developers Nick Bruty (President) and Bob Stevenson (CEO) in 1998.

<i>Kane & Lynch: Dead Men</i> video game

Kane & Lynch: Dead Men is a 2007 third-person shooter video game developed by IO Interactive and published by Eidos Interactive in North America and PAL regions, and Spike in Japan, for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The mobile phone version was developed by Kiloo and published by Eidos Mobile. The game was received with mixed to positive reviews, and spawned a sequel, Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days. As of January 11, 2008, the game has sold over 1 million copies.

GameFAQs website

GameFAQs is a website that hosts FAQs and walkthroughs for video games. It was created in November 1995 by Jeff Veasey and was bought by CNET Networks in May 2003. It is currently owned by CBS Interactive. The site has a database of video game information, cheat codes, reviews, game saves, box art images and screenshots, almost all of which is submitted by volunteer contributors. The systems covered include the 8-bit Atari platform through modern consoles, as well as computer games and mobile games. Submissions made to the site are reviewed by the site's current editor, Allen "SBAllen" Tyner.

CNET American media website about technology and consumer electronics

CNET, formerly Computer Network, is an American media website that publishes reviews, news, articles, blogs, podcasts and videos on technology and consumer electronics globally. Founded in 1994 by Halsey Minor and Shelby Bonnie, it was the flagship brand of CNET Networks and became a brand of CBS Interactive through CNET Networks' acquisition in 2008. CNET originally produced content for radio and television in addition to its website and now uses new media distribution methods through its Internet television network, CNET Video, and its podcast and blog networks.

A review aggregator is a system that collects reviews of products and services. This system stores the reviews and uses them for purposes such as supporting a website where users can view the reviews, selling information to third parties about consumer tendencies, and creating databases for companies to learn about their actual and potential customers. The system enables users to easily compare many different reviews of the same work. Many of these systems calculate an approximate average assessment, usually based on assigning a numeric value to each review related to its degree of positive rating of the work.

Giant Bomb American video game website

Giant Bomb is an American video game website and wiki that includes personality driven gaming videos, commentary, news and reviews, created by former GameSpot editors Jeff Gerstmann and Ryan Davis. The website was voted by Time magazine as one of the Top 50 websites of 2011. Originally part of Whiskey Media, the website was acquired by CBS Interactive in March 2012.

Whiskey Media American online media company

Whiskey Media was an American online media company founded independently by CNET co-founder Shelby Bonnie in 2008. It was the parent company of Tested, Screened, and Anime Vice, and the former parent company of Giant Bomb and Comic Vine. Whiskey Media websites are wiki community based, while maintaining an editorial staff. The company's target demographic are focused primarily on males between 10 and 30. The name "Whiskey Media" is a reference to a Kentucky distillery that was owned by the family of Shelby Bonnie before prohibition. Whiskey Media operates in San Francisco, California, after previously being located in Sausalito. On March 15, 2012, Whiskey Media was acquired by Lloyd Braun and Gail Berman's BermanBraun along with Tested, Screened, and Anime Vice while Giant Bomb and Comic Vine were bought separately by CBS Interactive.

Call of Juarez is a Western-themed first-person shooter video game series from Polish developer and publisher Techland, as well as until 2018, French publisher Ubisoft; currently comprising four installments.

References

  1. "Gamespot.com Site Info". Alexa Internet. Archived from the original on May 14, 2016. Retrieved April 1, 2014.
  2. "GameSpot.com WHOIS, DNS, & Domain Info - DomainTools". WHOIS . 2016. Retrieved February 15, 2016.
  3. "Results of Spike TV's 2004 Video Game Awards". Archived from the original on June 14, 2006. Retrieved June 9, 2006.
  4. "Site Profile for gamespot.com". Archived from the original on October 19, 2008. Retrieved May 15, 2008.
  5. "D.I.C.E. Awards by Video Game Details". Archived from the original on June 5, 2018. Retrieved August 17, 2019.
  6. "Course Number: Ba278".
  7. 1 2 3 "Research Dream Job: Online Gaming Zine". Wired. February 6, 1997.
  8. 1 2 Navarro, Alex (July 14, 2006). "Burning Questions: July 14, 2006". Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved March 23, 2007.
  9. Willmott, Don (February 9, 1999). "The 100 Top Web Sites". PC Magazine . 18 (3): 114.
  10. Olafson, Peter (December 7, 2000). "BASICS; Sites Keep Up With Games and Gamers". The New York Times . Archived from the original on May 23, 2018. Retrieved May 27, 2018.
  11. "GameSpot Redesign: Frequently Asked Questions". Archived from the original on October 18, 2013. Retrieved September 29, 2006.
  12. "GameSpot UK Winner, PPAi Awards 1999". Archived from the original on September 26, 2007. Retrieved October 7, 2006.
  13. "GameSpot UK Short Listed, PPAi Awards 2001". Archived from the original on September 26, 2007. Retrieved October 7, 2006.
  14. "GameSpot UK launches". April 24, 2006. Archived from the original on June 11, 2007. Retrieved November 1, 2006.
  15. 1 2 3 "Spot On: GameSpot on Gerstmann". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. December 5, 2007. Archived from the original on July 25, 2008. Retrieved December 24, 2007.
  16. "CNET Denies 'External Pressure' Caused Gerstmann Termination". Shacknews. November 30, 2007. Archived from the original on May 15, 2008. Retrieved December 24, 2007.
  17. "Farewell, GameSpot". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. January 4, 2008. Archived from the original on June 7, 2014. Retrieved May 19, 2014.
  18. Orland, Kyle (January 14, 2008). "Gamespot staffer Alex Navarro quits in wake of Gerstmann-gate". Engadget. Archived from the original on December 3, 2018. Retrieved January 14, 2018.
  19. Orland, Kyle (February 4, 2008). "Gamespot exodus continues: Ryan Davis to leave". Endgadget. Archived from the original on December 3, 2018. Retrieved January 14, 2018.
  20. Kasavin, Greg (January 19, 2007). "To Live and Die in L.A." Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved May 17, 2007.
  21. "Jeff Gerstmann - Virtual Fools". Archived from the original on March 14, 2008. Retrieved April 15, 2008.
  22. "GameSpot and Giant Bomb, Together". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. March 15, 2012. Archived from the original on March 8, 2013. Retrieved January 14, 2018.
  23. "GameSpot Forums". GameSpot. Archived from the original on August 14, 2005. Retrieved June 22, 2007.
  24. "GameSpot revamps subscription model". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Archived from the original on January 15, 2018. Retrieved January 14, 2018.
  25. 1 2 3 "GameSpot sign-up page". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Archived from the original on March 21, 2007. Retrieved April 3, 2007.
  26. "GameSpot's Paid Subscription Service is Ending: FAQ". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. January 9, 2013. Archived from the original on February 6, 2013. Retrieved January 22, 2013.