Yesterday while on Twitter, one of the people I follow re-tweeted a tweet from a person at Kotaku, a major video games media website, that stated their firm had an opening for a writing position and had a link to the job description and application. I took a look at the link and thought about it for some time. Jobs at major video game websites are hard to score and openings don’t come often, so anytime I read about them I take a look to see what’s being sought. If you’ve read this blog for awhile, you know that I enjoy both playing video games and writing about them, so a career in games media sounds like something right up my alley, but part of me wonders if there actually is a place for me in modern games media. The reason I ask this is because I’m not too keen on doing a number of things that seem to be common in games media, and the internet in general, such as instant reactions, fake internet outrage, click-bait articles, and vacuous Youtube videos. I don’t want to do any of that, however it’s clear that these things exist because they generate web traffic, so apparently this is what people want.

If staying on the bleeding edge of each day’s hot conversation, being angry all the time, generating sensationalist content, and creating time-wasting videos are off the table for me, what is left in games media? One option might be the old-school basic journalism. Strictly facts-based games journalism, (what a game is, when it comes out, etc.) will always have a place in games media but that sort of career would get boring for me real fast and these days a lot if it appears to have been outsourced to freelancers so that websites can cut down on their staffing costs. Another possible path is game reviews, which I sort of already do with my commentaries, though I don’t think of them as actual reviews and I never assign any sort of a score to games I talk about. The major downsides I see to being a professional games reviewer is that I’d probably have to play a lot of games that I’m not interested in and I suspect that many of my views are frequently minority opinion, so I don’t think I’d be a good judge of what most people like in games. A third option would be the Internet Personality route, which has a certain appeal to it, but a hyper-introvert like myself who is really bad on camera and says stupid stuff when put in situations that require quick thinking is a recipe for disaster. I would need weeks if not months of coaching before I was ready to appear on a podcast or video and even then I would be limited on what I could offer.

Even after much thinking I’m still not sure where I would fit in games media, but the more I write about games the more I think I understand what I want to do with regards to them. I want to talk about the games that mean something to me, and in a way that’s hopefully more thoughtful than the knee-jerk reactions that have been becoming increasingly popular online. That means not talking about every game. That means focusing on just certain aspects of a game. That means taking time to think over and marinate on a game before discussing it. That means doing a lot of things that simply aren’t going to cut it in today’s internet society, and I think I’m ok with that, even if it means I never find a place in games media. I may toil away in obscurity, but at least I’ll be doing what I want to do and staying true to myself.

Circling back to that original tweet, I’m thinking that if I have the time, what I might do is try to prepare an application for the job at Kotaku and see how it looks. My resume is currently not structured to reflect my gaming and writing experience, so that needs to be overhauled. I’ll also need to draft a cover letter that somehow details why I would be fit for such a job. When it’s all done, I’ll take a look at the tweet again and see if the job application page is still open. Though I probably don’t stand a chance of getting the job, and I might not even want to do what they have in mind, if the spot is still open maybe I should click the submit button, and see what happens.

1 Comment

  1. Ricardo,
    Do it. Do it. Do it. All of those reasons you give for not doing it? Try reframing them as opportunities for learning. (Okay, maybe not the angry-all-the-time stupidity, but the rest of it.) Take a serious shot at it. Just making a serious application for the job will be a useful exercise. Trust me.

    –Ben

    Like

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