After a lot of soul-searching, I’ve decided to stop contributing regular updates to Video Game Media Watch.
Many of you have no doubt assumed this after months without an word from me, but it was far from a foregone conclusion. Initially, I took a short break from the site during an especially busy week for my freelance responsibilities, secure in the belief that I would return to regular updates later. As the site went longer and longer without an update, though, I found it harder and harder to get back into it. A lack of post ideas wasn’t the problem — there were plenty of issues in the video game journalism space that I wanted to talk about, and there still are, in fact. But there were a few nagging issues getting in my way.
The first was time. Since I decided to start working as a freelancer full time, there has been less and less of it to devote to a lot of things I once loved. Between multiple daily posts for Joystiq, feature articles for the Escapist, and other myriad freelance projects, I often found myself having to squeeze in time for daily VGMWatch posts. That’s not how it should be. Blogging should never be something you feel you’re forced to do, it should be something you’re eager to do. More and more, I realized this wasn’t how I felt about the site.
The second problem is perspective. When I started this site as The Video Game Ombudsman over three years ago, I was a just a random game reviewer for my college paper, screaming at the wind about whatever issues I wanted to from a distinctly outsider perspective. To some, my lack of experience may have been a failing, but I always considered it a strength — a way to avoid the myopia and conflicts that come with the daily grind of games journalism.
Now that I’m doing things full time, I find it harder to muster up that righteous indignation that drove me before. It’s not that I no longer care about the issues I once railed against, or that I’ve sold out to the industry or anything like that. It’s more that my perspective on the issues has become moderated in a way that makes it harder to maintain the voice that I think made VGMWatch great. There may be a place for video game journalism criticism from a more experienced, insider perspective, but I didn’t want Video Game Media Watch to be that place.
After three years and hundreds of posts on the site, I feel I’ve said my piece. Most of the issues that continue to crop up in the game journalism space feel like mere echoes of other issues I’ve already covered ad nauseum. How many times can one person comment on someone else commenting on how much game journalism sucks, or on how the mainstream media got the facts wrong again. The Spike TV Awards are going to be broadcast tomorrow night, but after covering the telecast for three years, I don’t know how much more I can really add to the discussion (Also, someone appears to have beaten me to the liveblogging.)
I’d like to think that VGMWatch has achieved its objective of making game journalists a little more self-conscious and aware of the issues surrounding their profession. I think continuing the sire as a largely independent, mostly-outsider voice in the game journalism space is important. I just feel it’s time for a fresh voice to give that perspective.
So it’s with great price that I introduce Dan Dormer and his team of editors, who will continue to keep VGMWatch up-to-date, hopefully more often than I did. You may remember Dan from news stories on 1up.com and from posts on this very site, such as the liveblogging of MTV’s Xbox 360 unveiling. I’m sure he’ll do a great job continuing the tradition of snraky criticism VGMWatch is known for.
Before you pop the champagne, know that I may continue to contribute to VGMWatch on occasion if a suitable issue presents itself, and I’ll definitely be keeping track of the site, helping behind the scenes in my own way as Dan gets his feet wet.
That’s it, I guess. It’s been a fun ride. I want to thank everyone who linked to it, left a comment, sent an e-mail, or just read a post. I want to thank my momma and baby Jesus for getting me to this point. *Band starts playing theme music* Wait I’m not done. *Music gets louder* Billy Bob, my loyal dog, I love you… *gets dragged off stage by a comically oversized cane*