November 26, 2022

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Technology and Age

G4 shuts down after layoffs, Frosk firing, WWE deal falls apart

Following mass layoffs much less than a 12 months following its return, Comcast’s movie match-centric tv and on line community G4 is shutting down, in accordance to a report from Deadline citing an inside electronic mail from Comcast Spectacor CEO Dave Scott.

“Over the earlier many months, we worked tough to deliver … desire in G4, but viewership is very low and the community has not realized sustainable economical final results,” Scott wrote. “This is unquestionably not what we hoped for, and, as a consequence, we have designed the incredibly tricky final decision to discontinue G4’s operations, powerful quickly.”

Even though G4 has struggled all through 2022, the shutdown itself was unexpected. The Washington Put up seen yet another electronic mail despatched Sunday from G4 head Joe Marsh to workforce that educated staff members that G4′s Los Angeles facility would be closed until finally Oct. 18 — and that all streams were being postponed. But that electronic mail did not mention the network’s shutdown. On top of that, former G4 personnel who asked for anonymity due to the signing of nondisclosure agreements informed The Submit that staff have been locked out of inner conversation providers like Slack and Google Drive devoid of speedy explanation. This came soon after crew from “Arena,” a show developed as section of a vital offer with the WWE, quit last 7 days, according to ex-personnel.

G4 is Comcast’s endeavor at reviving a network from the early 2000s that imagined what televised video match coverage and enjoyment could look like several years right before written content creators on YouTube and Twitch began amassing thousands and thousands of viewers. In spite of recurring makes an attempt at bringing mentioned creators into the fold — demonstrates these types of as “Name Your Price” have been hosted by Twitch stars like AustinShow (who has not publicly divulged his comprehensive title) — the network by no means located its footing when competing from unique influencers, who them selves were being influenced by G4′s authentic, 2002-2014 iteration.

Expenses for guest talent appear to have played a function in the closure. In accordance to numerous G4 employees interviewed by The Submit, some higher-profile creators demanded day fees of $25,000-$30,000 when invited to show up as friends on G4.

Many events presaged G4′s demise. The nosedive that culminated Sunday started when then-president Russell Arons exited G4 at the conclude of August. In September, G4 laid off extra than 20 crew members, several of whom worked on displays like movie match assessment and commentary flagship “X-Participate in.” A week later on, Kotaku noted that just one of the revived G4′s most well known faces, “X-Play” host Indiana “Froskurinn” Black, was no longer with the community. Later that very same thirty day period, Kevin Pereira — a person of the most important names to come out of the authentic 2005-13 operate of geek lifestyle range plan “Attack of the Display,” who also hosted its reboot — also departed.

In Sunday’s memo, Scott expressed his regrets.

“I know this is disappointing news, and I’m dissatisfied, far too,” he wrote. “I want to thank you and every person on the G4 group for the tough function and commitment to the network.”