One of the biggest YouTube influencers of 2016 has entered the Call of Duty esports scene, and plans to take a huge step forward in 2017 for women in esports.
Confirming the rumors from MLG Vegas, Zoie Burgher has announced via her YouTube channel that she will be starting a female-only Call of Duty team, as well as hosting self-funded esports competitions.
“These girls will be able to compete in these events, which will be financially sponsored by yours truly and my business… and give exposure to girls, specifically girls, who are in the competitive gaming scene,” Burgher said in her announcement video.
The team will consist of a main gaming team, which Burgher will be a part of, as well as a professional esports team and a streaming team.
Burgher has been known as an enigma for YouTube in 2016, being kicked off Twitch this year and establishing her presence on YouTube. Her livestreams and videos have been popular among the online community in terms of views, and her brand is based off of risqué content. She also frequently collaborates with several other fast-rising and similar content creators, such as Celestia Vega and Abigale Mandler.
With the usual content of her videos in mind, Burgher emphasized that the selection process for these female gamers will be solely based on skill, and that several teams will be fielded under the main gaming team. She also struck down any rumor that the choice of female competitiors would be based on looks or sexual content, as it would be completely against what this team would stand for.
“There will be no forced or imposed sexuality. That is absolutely silly,” Burgher said. “There will be no requirements for any kind of unneccesary things when it comes to the gaming team, because at the end of the day, the only thing that matters for the pro gaming team is gaming skill. And of course, I will only be supporting female gamers.”
Continuing with her argument in her support of only female competitiors, she said it is not because “she is sexist against men,” but rather that “women and men are unequal” and have different strengths and weaknesses.
There is no current name for the team at the time of writing. Furthermore, it has not been confirmed whether these competitions will draw interest from members of existing female professional leagues, such as the Female Pro League, or if it will conflict with the schedules of those leagues.
Citing that it is “where the money is at,” Burgher said that her self-funded competitions and team will be based in Call of Duty, but opened the possibility of other esports being introduced in the future.
On a strict eye test, some YouTube viewers are not thrilled with the idea of Burgher entering the esports scene, and the current like-to-dislike percentage at the time of writing is just above 60 percent. Top comments on the video range from “(explitive) the team, just get the (explitives) out, stop talking” to a more mild mannered one in, “Ok Zoie I’ve never said this before // but at this point. // you actually have gone too far.”
Burgher is confident that this venture will be unlike anything else seen in the esports community, and looks to put female gamers in the spotlight, despite any doubts held by those deeming her as a controversial figure in gaming.
“This will be an entirely unprecidented event, I cannot think of any other situation that has really primed itself to give attention to the gaming community,” Burgher said. “And a lot of concerns have been raised about how I will discredit egaming and esports as a whole, which I do not think is true. Because at the end of the day, these girls have skill, these girls have gaming talent, they want their names to be out there, and they want their names to be known. And I support that 100 percent.”
In the near future leading up to “the big reveal,” she promised that there will be more information to come in regards to these teams. For Burgher, she ultimately wants to see the rise of females in esports, and is ready and willing to give the exposure for them to succeed in the field.
“This (venture) will only be giving them a platform to work off of so that they will be able to increase their own net worth so that they can have a career of doing what they love,” Burgher said. “Sadly, a lot of people will have a lot of backlash thanks to this. But at the end of the day, I think people will work together and give exposure to some very well deserving streamers, gamers, and (explitive) eSluts.”
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James Mattone is a journalist for GAMURS and can be contacted on Twitter –@TheJamesMattone.