Ninja reportedly turned down massive offer from Twitch to join Mixer - Dexerto
Entertainment

Ninja reportedly turned down massive offer from Twitch to join Mixer

Published: 30/Jan/2020 18:35

by Eli Becht

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Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins shocked everyone when he made the choice to switch from Twitch to Mixer, and now we might have an idea of how much Amazon’s streaming platform offered to convince him to stay.

Ninja kicked off a major streaming platform war when he moved to Mixer. Following his high-profile switch that came in the form of a press conference with himself, we saw major streamers like shroud, CouRageJD, and several others make similar decisions.

According to a new report from Kotaku, Twitch offered him $15 million over three years, but they were outpaced by both Facebook Gaming and Mixer.

Ninja Mixer
Ninja - Twitter
Ninja is with Mixer after spending his entire career on Twitch.

“Twitch’s offer to keep Blevins, sources said, topped out at around $15 million per year for three years,” says the Kotaku report. “Mixer and Facebook offered him more, with Mixer upping the ante to something in the neighborhood of $20 million per year.”

The report claims that Twitch believed Ninja had maxed out his “earned media” for the platform, meaning they had already gotten as much free publicity as they could get out of him. This ended up being a major factor in how much the company was willing to offer him.

Mixer / Ninja / Shroud
Mixer / shroud / Ninja
Shroud and Ninja are reportedly receiving massive deals from Mixer.

While Twitch had already become a household name, Mixer wasn’t exactly there yet and could benefit a lot by signing the Fortnite superstar.

It lags far behind in hours watched when compared to Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and even Facebook Gaming, but it is looked at as a major player in the streaming landscape.

Mixer, Facebook, YouTube, Twitch viewership
StreamElements
Mixer is in last place when it comes to hours watched.

Signing two star streamers hasn’t had much of an impact in terms of bringing extra eyes to other Mixer streamers, but it’s gone a long way in giving some credibility to the Microsoft-owned platform.

Another way it can benefit from Ninja is by taking advantage of his roots in the Halo series. Before he skyrocketed to fame with Fortnite in 2017, he was a professional Halo player.

Microsoft will be launching a new console and Halo: Infinite later in the year, so the signing came at a great time. The company will likely use him to promote Halo, as they already did with Gears 5 when that launched.

halo infinite

The same Kotaku report claims a portion of money from the reported deal came from Microsoft’s Xbox division, which was “a much more sizable amount than any Mixer had negotiated with a streamer before.”

It’s clear Microsoft will be interested in stirring up some extra interest for their first-party titles with Ninja, and while it’s too early to know if that’s actually going to make a major difference, they are definitely it in for the long haul.

Entertainment

FBE founders Benny & Rafi Fine called out by staff for “toxic workplace”

Published: 16/Jan/2021 19:54

by Charlotte Colombo

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Benny and Rafi Fine, the two creators behind the FBE (Fine Brothers entertainment) brand have come back into the spotlight today a year after they stepped back from FBE after former employees publicly accused them of racism and a “toxic” working environment.

In an investigative article by Insider, 26 former employees spoke out about their experiences working for FBE. The company’s former head of casting, Steve Caustey, revealed that the Fine brothers used a three-tier system to rank their “reactors”, and demanded that at least 33% of the people in their “react” videos involved people in the top tier before an episode could be made.

Causey told Insider that there were “more white people at the top” of the tier, which meant that episodes ended up being predominately white.

He said in an interview with them: “It was noticeable, but I don’t think it was intentional. I feel like it might’ve started as unconscious bias, but after a time enough people brought it up that it should have been addressed.”

A former researcher told Insider that FBE staff “profit from the idea that they’re diverse without valuing it authentically. They try to capitalize and commercialize on it as much as they can.”

FBE’s lawyers said to Insider that race wasn’t a factor in decisions such as tiers and video thumbnails, with a spokesperson adding that the Fine brothers “have always endeavored to feature a majority of underrepresented voices in FBE’s content.”

What happened with FBE last year?

In June 2020, a video resurfaced of a comedy sketch Benny Fine did with fellow YouTuber Shane Dawson, wherein Benny was wearing blackface. The footage went viral and led to the two founders receiving extreme backlash.

High profile members of their ‘React’ series, such as Kennedy Zimet, made the decision to leave the channel after the footage went viral, with Zimet saying in a statement shared to Twitter that they felt “blindsided and flat out used, especially since they have not owned up to their actions by apologizing publicly or to their black cast members.”

This led to Mark Plier, who claimed to be a former producer for FBE, to claim on Twitter that the Fine brothers “wanted to benefit from the “diversity” but not benefit diversity”, alleging that YouTube video thumbnails with more than one BAME person were frequently turned down by the pair.

He also claimed that they “would frequently ask for the person of color to be on the right of the thumbnail and not the left, our only conclusion as to why that would be is the left person is the first one you’d see and thus the first impression.”

In further Tweets, Plier alleged that “the culture was so entrenched and they were so unwilling to hear our demands for changes that employee turnover became larger than the company’s actual size in just the 3 years I was there.”

The brothers released a statement apologizing for their “terrible errors of judgment” and ultimately decided to take a step back from the FBE company following the backlash.