Esports news site OnGamers cuts its freelance staff
OnGamers, a venture of CBS Interactive, was issued a year-long ban from social news site Reddit earlier this month. One of the site's journalists, Rod “Slasher” Breslau, had been caught asking Reddit users to submit his stories to the site with specific headlines, a violation of an agreement the company had made with Reddit after a previous ban.
Reddit was a large source of traffic for OnGamers and the ban seemed like a potential disaster for the company. Following the ban, CBSI’s vice president of esports, Kim Rom, told the Daily Dot that it could "seriously [endanger] the livelihood” of OnGamer’s staff.
A large portion of OnGamers staff included freelance writers, all tasked with covering many of the most popular esports from Hearthstone to League of Legends.
Shortly after the Reddit ban, OnGamers launched its so-called "academy," an unpaid program that offered training and connections to up and coming League of Legends writers and journalists. This program may have been the first sign the site was struggling to maintain its pool of paid freelancers.
The cuts don't seem to be limited to OnGamers. Multiple journalists for GameSpot, another CBSi venture, announced on Twitter today that they were no longer working for the site.
I walk out alongside some colleagues I am honored and privileged to have worked with. And I will miss working with everyone at GS so much.
— Carolyn Petit (@carolynmichelle) July 30, 2014
With OnGamers still banned from Reddit—the major source for esports traffic on the Internet—it's future remains uncertain. OnGamers did not respond to requests for comment.