Is social media responsible for less E3 involvement?



If you’re interested in gaming or anything technology-related, you most likely have your eyes set on E3 this June. The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) is the must-attend event of the year, especially if you’re a company looking to target gamers and investors.

However, attendance at these trade shows is diminishing. Social media is taking hold of the industry. Companies are relying on Internet marketing companies to promote games rather than spending the money on attending trade shows.

If you’ve been following the news, you probably know that Nintendo, which is arguably the most notable video game company in the world, will not be attending E3. Instead, it will attend smaller events made exclusively for distributors and the gaming media in general.

I’ve been lurking on message boards like the nerdy ninja I am and, as a result, noticed a tremendous outcry. Accusations like “Nintendo’s ashamed of the Wii U; it doesn’t want to compete next to the other companies,” were common. But Nintendo wasn’t the only one to back out of E3.

Shortly after Nintendo announced its rather controversial decision, 2K Games, and its daughter company, Rockstar Games, backed out of E3 as well. Considering that three big names have backed out so far, one has to wonder how important E3 is these days. Is it possible that these companies find it easier to dispense news in other ways, such as social media?

Nintendo Direct, an online news-broadcast, proved to be a success because many new games were revealed, such as Yoshi’s Island for 3DS and an updated Zelda game reminiscent of “A Link to the Past.”

Social video sites like YouTube have given companies platforms to reveal stories on their own channels. Twitter, which is basically a live news feed, allows companies to promote game releases and industry tidbits instantly. Most people are engaged on social media, whereas not everyone can attend E3. Now, companies don’t have to rely on a conference to gain an audience because stories can spread on the Internet like the T-Virus in Raccoon City.

Instead of walking around an expo, fans and gamers can obtain instant gratification from social media. They can find out what games are coming out and when without leaving their home. Just like video games, expos are becoming more like a virtual reality all as a result of social media.

What do you think is in store for the future of E3?

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