Call of Duty League’s media troubles a warning sign?
Staff, 2022-12-01 17:29:54,
I may be pessimistic, but I think the Call of Duty League’s media rights limbo is going to hurt the entire market for media rights in esports. I sincerely hope I’m wrong. — Jason Wilson
Activision Blizzard’s troubles in securing a media deal for its esports leagues could have far-reaching implications across the esports landscape. After signing a three-year, $160 million deal in 2020 that saw pro Call of Duty, Overwatch and Hearthstone streamed exclusively on YouTube, these Activision esports properties don’t have a media home as Friday’s CDL opener approaches.
While sources tell us that Activision Blizzard is trying to work out a media rights deal, as it stands, one day before the start of the Call of Duty League season, there is no deal and no money changing hands.
What esports organizations and their ownership are concerned with is the potential reduction in revenue share and how the lack of a media deal devalues the league and its teams. What this situation appears to show is that streaming services aren’t seeing the value in making the types of deals they have in the past. If this is the case, it directly affects the valuation of the league and its teams.
There could be other reasons as to why a deal hasn’t been done. The in-process acquisition of Activision by Microsoft could be gumming up the works. Sources close to Activision have told SBJ that they are in the dark as to a lot of the logistics surrounding its esports leagues, as…
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