FXOBoSs's Insights
Trying to create transparency in high return investments

Since leaving FXOpen in any official capacity (I still talk to and help out if asked but its not my job and I have no obligation) I have started exploring the world for Options of transparent investments.

Having some spare cash to play with I took a look at term deposits. The fact that in the fine print the return range is from 0-5% to me is like saying we will market 5% to you but you could get 0. Lock my money up for 2 yrs for 0%? No thank you. 

I moved on and did some work trading bonds. Perhaps bonds was a good option? Yes it is, but the entry level of this investment to me is a little steep. Albeit the market is much easier to trade and a lot of fun but I feel its not really an investment worthy of funds sub 100 million. 

I did some google searches, and as you know theres so much bullshit on the internet eventually I got a headache and left that alone.

I trade FX, I pretty much always have. But you always should hedge yourself with other income methods as an individual trader. Hedging is what will get you through the tough times. If you are working a salaried job, you should also hedge your job security. Some people do this by having savings accounts. Others buy stock, some buy property. These are all a form of hedge to an income source. 

Finally I was introduced to a man in London who trades FX like me, but in a far more conservative fashion. Originally I was extremely skeptical. Being the Director of a brokerage has its advantages. You can see the damage people inflict on themselves by over-trading and risking everything. So I put him to work testing. Basically I gave him a month to prove to me his ability, at the same time he was somewhat forced to reveal the basics of his strategy so I could stress test it on my own side and then only after that would he get my money. 

The results of the first test are here: http://www.myfxbook.com/members/Russell/fxopen/520293/2vUzlmsHyHmkTWGHW1SV

Now to clarify something. Myfxbook uses a login to the trading platform account called an “investor password”. It provides the ability to see open and closed trades as well as the statement. If you provide this login, myfxbook lists you as verified. Being verified does NOT guarantee honesty. Some brokers have been known to manipulate myfxbook with data in order to gain clients. However this is the safest form of reporting that can be done without giving up secure information.

Anyway, this test was done on a stand alone account. It was the traders own money, and he put himself up to show me what he has got. I was pleasantly surprised at the conservative approach he takes to the market. Which allows me to be my aggressive self and my bad months will be made up by his good months.

After analysing the data, having many more talks with him and deciding to move forward, we set up this account: http://www.myfxbook.com/members/Russell/fxopen-pamm/525025/UpFLLKD2PI9bdR24Rf49

This account again is his own money, but it is on a transparent system run by FXOpen in Australia to allow me to invest into his account. The investments into his account do not show in the myfxbook as it would manipulate the data. So it only shows the original deposited amount when the account was opened.

After 4 days of him starting this account, I through in enough money to generate returns to support myself conservatively (not to buy a ferrari, just to buy food/pay rent/feed my kitty).

On top of the myfxbook accounts, I can now see a minute by minute data feed in the fxopen back office of account activity. I know when its trading, when its not trading and how much I am up and down. And will always be able to make an educated decision on whether I wish to invest more, or withdraw my money.

After some weeks, I finally convinced the trader to offer this investment to ‘regular’ people. Most traders search for rich people or hedge fund money but having dealt with them for a long time I felt its time something transparent with a good return was opened up to the worlds savers (meaning people who save money). 

I got him to drop his minimum investment to USD$500. 

So now you are questioning my motives for writing on my blog about something like this. After all you are the lovely people of e-sports. Questioning things is always going to occur. 

My motives is to get people involved in transparent investing. Investments where unlike a savings account, you have some form of control over returns and outcomes. You are not dictated by regional interest rates or market movements but rather solid decision making. At the same time, you have access to your money 24/7.At the same time you know exactly what your money is being invested in and all the information available to you to make an educated decision on whether or not the investment is for you.

 

Will you get rich? Most probably not. But it could help with things like rent or holidays. Or even buying your GOM subscription (I dno if they still have GOM Subs). 

 

Of course the glitch in the diabolical plan of mine is that Americans can’t invest. It sucks, but your government seems to think people are too silly to make good decisions. 

Anyways, i’m always around on twitter @gosutrading if you wish to talk about things like this. 

Stay well everyone! 

 

 

Looking at recent stats posted on TL re: Prize money between LoL and SC2

Greetings earthlings and honorable humans.

Quickly whats going on. I have accepted a position as a trainee bond trader at an investment bank, the trainee side of it is only for 2 months. Basically if I fuck it up I go back to my regular FX biz, if I succeed I will most likely have to shut down my twitter (I can tell a few people are happy about that) . My mother had a heart attack recently, so I’ve been a bit off, and only just settled a bit and have been studying pretty hard on XT YT ZN ZB bonds. I am happy to be out of management and back into trading, anyway, some people were asking me about that stuff so I thought i’d add it to this blog.

Before I excite you, I am going to basically vent a little bit about my LoL and HOTS beta (team) experience.

Basically, you team game HOTS (below diamond) and ranked below silver 2 LoL players should be ashamed of yourselves… Get a real attitude.. Or better yet, go out and get beaten up.

Seriously there is a bucket load of attitude problem/mental disability in these parts of the game. I can’t comprehend how you can feed a lane in ranked 0-6 and then complain about the lane that is being won. Or being insulted for losing 2v1 in 2v2 HOTS because your team mate “WANTED TO GO MASS VOIDRAY, ITS OK MATE YOUR ONLY PLAT YOU WILL LEARN ITS BLIZZARDS FAULT THAT YOU ARE ON MY TEAM”.. Ouf…. 

Anyway, HOTS is great. It has alot of the game play stuff that WoL was lacking I can see some of the wannabe LoL pro’s who switched from pro SC2 coming back at a later date because its simply a better game now. 

Anyways the LoL vs SC2 prize money data was intriguing and was the reason I originally did not get into LoL when I was with FXO. The viewership numbers are great, lets ignore that part of it for now. You can whine at me later on twitter or something. But there is not as much external money in LoL as there was in WoL. Both of the games have similar ages I guess. I haven’t researched this part, but I think LoL is older? The artificial boom in LoL is created by RIOT. Essentially they are doing something like NFL, NBA etc for LoL. Its a great move and will give them good sales for any game they create. Alternatively if you aren’t part of that, you have little hope of earning cash in LoL. There is far less money being pumped into LoL events than sc2 from outside sources. And there are various reasons why. 

One reason from my experience is CLG and TSM’s control of the web market. Basically in order for an external event to be successful, you need their sites to plug it. If they dont give you permission, you will fail. Kinda like TL for sc2, although TL is much more willing to allow anyone to plug their events on their site. Essentially you can say that early on, CLG and TSM blocked external investment into LoL. Which could be a good thing in the long run, as it controls the bubble slightly, I am not sure on whether they have lightened up on this or not. But at the time I was running things at FXO, they weren’t the most friendly bunch to do business with. And perhaps rightly so. 

Advertising in e-sports is another reason why LoL hasn’t gotten such a huge external investment in events. The flow of money into SC2 was alot quicker than LoL, people/companies/advertisers may have learned a value and valuable lesson about the e-sports advertising value and how to better invest into the market or they found a more reasonable figure to satisfy their requirements. This most probably is shown by event sponsorships more than anything. You have an uncontrollable market where immeasurable blanket marketing is the only solution. Having dealt directly with companies involved in blanket marketing in e-sports, they have no means of measurement for their advertisement hence their cash sponsorships have dropped accordingly (unless you can provide them with figures stronger than what is readily available to managers). The drop in cash sponsorships for events over all games, that is, 1 sponsor may not be willing to cover the entire prize pool of an event OR enough money to make the prize pool viable vs viewership has occured. And as you see also in WoL the no. of tournaments has dropped.

Whats new for HOTS?


Nothing grim, more a lot of natural cycle based business. I would expect a drop of 25-50% in overall prize money for HOTS as the smaller regular events die off leaving the majors. IPL is potentially gone, which takes out a fair chunk. A balanced level which will become the norm providing the audience numbers are as they were 1 year ago will occur and a steady reasonable flow of money will be around in HOTS unless another major org goes bust.

LoL in the future?


Well, the only thing I see for LoL is they are going to be over saturated with new champs etc. They will have to increase the number of bans etc and it may change the game. If they over saturate on champs and dont change the actual game then it will make the game a little silly. But, the numbers are behind it so it will have an audience no matter what. But I feel they will run out of things to sell? I dont know, I haven’t had much experience with riot directly, but they need to move into a new avenue of sales in some way to capitalize on what they are doing.

A warning for those using venture capital


Venture capital runs out. If you aren’t turning a profit/breaking even after 2 yrs of business, you may want to look at closing up shop. One thing to learn from life is that doubling up on bets is the highest form of gambling with the lowest amount of probability of success. Using up venture capital then seeking more without solid financials is a dangerous thing to do. Venture capital is supposed to be for growth not for foundation.

Streaming in Gaming


Numbers for streams overall (as an entire industry not 1 individual or event) don’t seem too promising. If your life depends on streaming income you should look at 2 alternatives 1) getting a part time job as well for some good experience/fallback 2) move to a country thats cheaper to live in. Majority of streamers could live very well in south east asia or south america. (this is kind of a factual joke I’m making I don’t seriously mean run to south america and stream). 

Anyways, it would appear my incoherent is back for now whilst I study and feel like venting my thoughts.

ENJOY HOTS!

@gosutrading

A brief look at Korea 2013

Greetings, and happy new year everyone.

2013 is going to be an exciting one for me, and I hope it is the same for everyone in e-sports.

I have been taking notes on some patterns I am seeing in Korea at the moment, and am now looking to analyse and potentially predict the future of Korean SC2.

Before I start, I want to give a shout out to Mr Alex Garfield, from Evil Geniuses. He probably has done a similar analysis and has made moves to position him self correctly.

I will now explain my point of view.

With EG-TL joining proleague (which was the worst kept secret I have ever seen in sc2 thanks to the ever so Awesome JYP and the korean gossip mill) we saw the first “FOREIGN” (I want to put many “‘s around that word) team in proleague.

The thing about this proleague is 1) You are locked in for 1 year, and 2) the prize money is more than enough to fund an entire team in Korea for 12 months without salary (paying all expenses).

This is starcraft 2, so I am not going to compare it to brood war during its hayday, but it kinda makes the GSTL and GSL look like playhem weeklies from an analytical point of view.

What I see this is, is a power push by proleague to shake out GSL. And its a damn good one.

GOMTV has never formally released its numbers for subscriptions and public viewership, when requested for these numbers, they have outright refused to give them out privately, which handicaps the ESF teams with obtaining sponsorship. Most of the OGN online broadcast numbers are blatantly public, and correctly so. This helps with luring potential investment, and automatically puts the KESPA teams 1 step ahead of the ESF teams.

Locking in the teams for 1 year and having the number of broadcasts as it is, will allow the fans to migrate to the KESPA teams. Lets face it, the production, even though it would be in a “e-stadium” or “giant lan cafe” is still close to the GOMTV production minus the english casters. Casters recently, do not have as much pull as people think, the numbers do not vary dramatically from caster to caster like they used to. People are more attached to players, but this is another story.

Looking past the production of the KESPA run tournament, the prize money is the most important part.

ESF will be lucky to have 4 teams remaining in its organisation by the end of 2013. Why?

Well, for starters its damn hard to sell an ESF korean team, because the event they play in does not allow you to use the numbers to lure sponsors. You have to run on assumed numbers, and explaining why the numbers are not made public to the participants to a corporate person is pretty embarressing. 

Investor capital from teams like Azubu, EG, TL etc. will take the majority of ace players from the ESF teams over time. It does not cost much to buy a Korean ace, and the dramatic, emotional mentality of the korean pro gamers basically means if you give them a good offer, they will get so emotional about it that the current team has lost them forever. 

I dare say this is the case with parting, but I dont know the story. So don’t quote me on it.

As the aces move on, and most likely crash and burn (the current environment is a breeding ground for talent, the money environment in foreign teams is not. I do not really need to explain my opinion on this) you are left with struggling teams who have to re-do social media and re-advertise their players only to lose them again. 

So in the end the ESF teams will most probably remain struggling for the remainder of the existance of ESF. 

Again back to the prize money, GSL’s pitiful team league prize pool is a huge reason to look at it and go meh. Its no secret that a large number of the ‘fan favourite’ players do not prepare for the team league if it is not a super important match. The public will notably mention IM as the best team in the world, but they have had some miserable GSTL competitions, and its easy to assume that they do not take it as seriously due to the money aspect, this is heresay, but its safe to assume. 

Proleague players live and breath proleague, the games have been a mixture of awesome games, and disgustingly low quality games, but there is a mixture, which keeps it interesting. The new maps from the map team have changed the game slightly which makes it fresh and new, and the prize money is big enough to make it worth while for any time participating. Proleague wins, hands down. 

The GSL-KESPA player trading block will end soon enough, and I dare say the KESPA organisations will gather up enough capital to buy anyone that matters to finish off the shake off.

What can GOM do? Well, properly support its teams would be a good start. But I don’t see that happening. 

Gather further capital to increase production and prize money. This is possible, but they are now competing in korea with the KESPA org for sponsorships (team 8 for instance). 

For those who dont know, south korea is pretty much owned by a bunch of conglomerates. All the major companies are tied to a giant mother company in some way, and the KESPA teams have most of them as sponsors or a part of them as sponsors. So getting a huge company to sponsor GSL from Korea is going to be almost impossible.  GSL then needs to some how appeal to a foreign major. Which doing a production in a school hall (or gym or something) won’t achieve. So GOM is essentially stuck in this rut. 

As players become more desperate for money, and money coming from either foreign teams, or proleague, I don’t know how ESF can last. 

What would I do if I was Gretech?

Sell GSL to KESPA and merge ESF and KESPA. The players don’t like KESPA sure, but its all about survival and money for them in the end.

*My writing is extra rusty today, and I was writing this whilst cleaning my mothers pantry as she likes to keep things that are out of date*

*I no longer am affiliated with the FXOpen e-Sports organisation, so this viewpoint does not reflect the organisations opinion or direction*

<3 BoSs

You can follow me on twitter http://www.twitter.com/gosutrading

The world is changing, and so is the world as I know it

Dear e-Sports fanatics/special people in my life,

Regardless of the good times and the bad times in e-sports, I consider all of you my family. It doesn’t matter if you love or hate me, and if you say you don’t want to be related to me, I once said that to some of my family too, but you’ll get over it :)

A time has come in my life where I have reached a fork in the road professionally. And decisions need to be made. I took a step back from e-sports not only to maintain my professional career in finance, but also to evaluate the things in life that I want most and need most to progress as a man, and as a human being.

I no longer see it necessary for me to reside in Malaysia and carry on the tasks that I am performing. I will most likely (although its not 100% confirmed) take a rest back in Australia in my home town. Perhaps writing memoirs or doing further studies (I always wanted to do a psychology degree). 

So now, you are probably wondering why the hell you should care? Well, you shouldn’t really. I am not an important person in your life. But I would like to give a few lessons to the people out there from my experiences. So here they are:

- If something doesn’t feel right… NEVER do it. 

- Always hold onto your morals, as they are the only things that allow you to make snap decisions properly

- NEVER! and I mean NEVER! get involved in politics

- Know yourself and the product that you are, and play that to your advantage. Don’t let someone try to alter your product.

- Money isn’t everything, especially if you aren’t happy.

I hope these words might appeal to you if you are currently unhappy with your life.

It took me 2 years, 2 near death experiences from alcohol abuse, and a lot of time at the gym to finally work out that I am not truly happy. So now its time to endure the pursuit of happiness.

Regardless of who you are or how the past has been, in some way, I love you all and the industry that is e-sports. 

I will be around.

Peace

You can follow me on twitter http://www.twitter.com/gosutrading 

Mega RANT - time to clean shit up

This is a rant, not a blog. So if you expected a somewhat structured (albeit poorly) blog, this isn’t that. Its just a big rant.

Ok, so like many others in this space, I’m starting to get a little bit fed up.

This week has been like the bi-polar topsy turvey e-sports week. Its completely retarded and as an investor I feel relatively ill to be a part of whats going on by any means.

Starcraft 2 is not dying, its shrinking. It won’t die, but the bubble has burst but not in an overwhelming fashion. That is, watching the game no longer seems appealing to those who have bought it. This was inevitable, as the amount of new blood into the game is boardering 0 and has been boardering 0 for a while now. No real biggie, as the professional (prestige level) scene still exists and will remain existent. 

Everyone has been spamming their opinions of what they think should happen. Everyone has their own agenda on why changes should be made. I.E Destiny’s entire livelyhood depends purely on the casual gamer. Thus he wants the game to cater more to the casuals. If you watch his stream numbers between sc2 and LoL you will see that the LoL casuals are less likely to watch him than the sc2 ones. Thus it affects his business drastically that sc2 is not casual catered to. He’s not wrong, Sc2 has huge flaws in its social abilities compared to the original battle net and starcraft usa-1 starcraft kor-1 and starcraft aus-1 days. Heck I even remember boxer being in a chat channel at one stage and 30 guys in there stalking him. This was exciting and it made you play the game more. It has its flaws.

Artosis posted that the game is fabulous amazing beautiful. He is right as well, the game is amazing, its complex, its beautiful. 

Others ranted that custom games are crap. Again, correct (god i miss tower defense from wc3 and hydra ranchers). 

All these are entirely valid points and opinions. All of them are correct. But it doesn’t fix the problem. Making 4000 reddit posts and 4000 TL posts and 1 million tweets about it, also doesn’t fix the problem. Infact, it makes you look like a child, and some of you may be classified as children and thats fine, but people in the spot light need to behave differently and without the use of the F word every 2 seconds. I am not talking about the reaction blizzard may have, but I am talking about, as a major e-sports sponsor, the affect it has on my mentality when I am sponsoring this….. 

The thought crossed my mind to get out of this crap in the last 48 hours. And if it weren’t for my attachment to my players/team/organisation, I would have pushed out company to exit in as efficient a manner as possible. 

Anyway, push that aside for now. And lets move onto this slayers drama.

To be honest, I knew about slayers conditions and the situation for a long time now. Everyone in Korea did. 

The actual in house conditions of Slayers are not the fault of ESF we can cross that off the box. 

The practice conditions, sc2con and from what I can interpret, ESF are to blame for that although I have witnessed ESF players playing with slayers players in the past so am a little confused by this. 

The issue we now have is, foreign fans between the age of lets say 12 and 50, are posting opinions of what they think is right and wrong in Korea. Then we have Korean fans siding with the idol, ESF fans saying Jessica is horrible and all this other shit flying around like the world is about to end. 

As professionals in an industry (anyone mentioned in these articles and what not) there are HUGE mistakes made by all parties.

First of all, if you are being bullied in a space that requires fans, why aren’t you exposing this bullying? Fans are powerful weapons, and can be used to help you provide them with entertainment. 

Next, if you rely on fans, why do you do stupid shit like boycott a team that is such a fan favourite from the get go? I mean, seriously? 

A question I would like answered is, after I had a run in with sc2con and went blatantly public with it, why didn’t slayers come to me and say “We had a problem also here it is”. I would have publicly spat that out so quickly. Sc2con was an abomination and I had every reason to insult it publicly to get things done. 

One of the problems I am now facing as a person who wants an explanation for all actions from both sides, is that everyone has now gone tight lipped and anti-outsider. “Don’t worry, just don’t tweet kk?” is a common sentence being spat at me now. I tell you what, if anyone, foreign or Korean wants to survive in an industry like e-sports, you better start fighting for the greater good. If someone is pissing you off with bullshit tactics, start exposing it. If someone is harassing your players expose it. If someone is harassing you, expose it. Get it out in the public in a formal manner. Because sitting in silence in this market full of bullies, is not going to achieve ANYTHING. 

Exposing this crap AFTER the fact doesn’t achieve ANYTHING but damage to an industry. Theres no progress. Theres no growth. If anything it does the complete opposite, and I now question whether or not this was a motive for exposure. Was this done to hurt people more than they hurt you? I do believe in an eye for an eye, but you are blinding an entire industry instead of just those people.

Now before any of you say it, its not just sc2 now with this crap. Another (ANOTHER) LoL player was caught jacking off on stream? Seriously? Do you not give a crap about the thing you love so much? 

There have been so many people making a living from e-sports for the last small amount of time who would not have made that money so “easily” (I use the word easily lightly because its not that easy to be an entertainer but its easy if it comes natural i guess??) doing a job they are suitably qualified for in the ‘real world’. And now some of them are losing their livings because of the shift in the market. The volume of money entering the market that is not sales related is shrinking as well over all (some people might be getting more but it doesnt make up for the less that others are getting). So now what is the next step? Eternal damnation? Death by excessive reddit threads? Or we go back to square one, for the third time? 

Heres some things I think need to happen, to clean this complete cluster fuck of crap up.

- Any federation or organisation that exists must publicly announce their meeting notes a la corporate board

- Any organisation that is using public media to promote their viewership numbers, must publicly post viewership stats (in order to control artificial inflation / market manipulation)

- Any action taken against a team or player that is not publicly noted, should be reported to reliable media sources in a formal sense (this should deter secret boycotting and childish bullshit)

- Anyone caught masterbating on a stream should probably seek psychiatric help

- Organisations who receive ill treatment from players or casters should report it formally to a federation or reliable media source for public disclosure (some of the behaviour these days is utterly disgusting)

- Players who which to whine about the game, should whine to blizzard directly on the blizzard forums so as to not fill the entire media space with what is the majority of whining about balance (the players aren’t doing that, the community is). Balance is not the problem get over it. A huge increase in blizzard forum posting traffic would more likely make them pay attention than 4000 reddit threads with negative titles. 

These are just a few things I have in mind, and will most likely submit to ESF, other than the masterbation one. I am still trying to get over that, sure it might be a mistake but …. seriously? I will never get over that.

The mere fact alllll of this came out at once, is like a major mess and has probably done at least 6 months of damage to the sc2 scene over all. Thats right, 6 months worth of fluff media on reddit including my blog posts, all wasted because of 2 days of drama. Just like all markets, the media market is no exception. When there is a bear day, its usually a large amount of bull days to make it back. This shit storm, I know for a fact has caught the attention of a large number of people with significant investment in starcraft. And let me tell you, they ARE NOT IMPRESSED.

Anyway, its all off my chest now. Its a rant, not a blog.

Enjoy

<3 FXOBoSs

You can follow me on twitter http://www.twitter.com/gosutrading

Blaming the community

Well…. I am a little bored at the moment. So what better thing to do than write a little blog based on the reddit thread re: chanmanv’s show climbing the ladder and Mrs Biscuits new team.

First things first as usual, I commend all parties involved in attempting to create nice conditions in e-sports. Its good to see someone do something about it, rather than just sit and whine.

But some of the facts given in the video are a little wrong. I won’t go over which ones, but it all comes down to things aren’t as bad as being reported.

Anyway, people are questioning why starcraft players aren’t getting paid bucket loads of cash, or suitcases if you don’t like buckets. The truth is, its because the community doesn’t provide a big enough return to justify the spending.

Its a bit of a painful truth, but its the truth. 

FXOpen itself gets a somewhat break even return on the investment, since we are not directly related to e-sports. We have managed to monetize in a different way via SEO and reputation changes. Its a good thing, but slowly that aspect of return will disappear as everything is already set up. So what next? We recently went sponsor hunting, and the majority of sponsors are willing to sponsor at most USD2000 per month with huge lists of conditions for that money to provide them a return.

There are exceptions of course but its justified to have such a low amount of sponsorship. USD24000 per year is probably at best a break even investment for the sponsors providing all conditions of the contract are met (unless the sponsors are weird and have huge requirements). And the reason its justified is the community.

The community itself has shown huge amounts of hesitation towards paying for something. Now, we all need mice and keyboards, which would be why all the peripheral sponsorships exist, but companies like Razer, steelseries, zowie etc, aren’t exactly multi billion dollar companies. So they can’t open their pockets up to the world because there will be a point where they are spending more than they are making. The next level of sponsors are monster, NOS, LG etc. I can’t reveal what I know, but the amounts that they sponsor are not huge albeit they are big for e-sports, they are nothing like championship darts.

After this, we go higher and there is no one…. Literally…. LG could be considered this level, but the amount of money they are sponsoring isn’t befitting to their company value. And the community is now asking why? 

Well, how many of you have gone out and bought an LG TV or dishwasher or monitor because they sponsor IM? Maybe 20 of you? Its not worth it for LG to sponsor the money they are capable of sponsoring, at least not right now. So why would they?

Sponsors who are not directly related to e-sports don’t care about the ‘passion’ they only care about the money. What do we get out of it? This is the most common question asked at any sponsorship meeting. And truth be known to companies who aren’t a requirement for game playing, they will get very little. 

So whats next for e-sports? Well, you are going to start getting charged for the content. Anyone who thinks the content being made should be considered free because “twitch lets them play ads thats enough” should probably start researching what kind of money actually can come out of that and thats no attack on twitch, they do a great job and are doing a great job at trying to provide a service to the community that allows things to last longer and grow. 

So its now time that the community start paying, even if its a dollar, for the content. If the content doesn’t provide a return to the creator, they will soon start to disappear unless they are unemployed and doing it from their home basement. Because everyone needs to earn a living in some way and e-sports may not be it until the community can start to appreciate whats being given to them.

Now what I don’t agree with, is charging 20 bucks to watch an event for a weekend. E-sports is not the armani of the competitive world. Its more like the walmart clothing department. Its one of those things where instead of calling yourself Giorgio and charging 500 bucks for a product and making a sale a month, you should be calling yourself “discount store” and selling your product for 2 bucks a month and making 50000 sales. 

No offence to MLG, but whoever came up with their pricing probably doesn’t know the community very well. 

You can’t call the PPV model a failure if it was set up poorly. The purchasing power for streams/events of the community would be no more than 10 bucks a month and to take that 10 bucks from the community is like cutting someones arm off. So why not only make it a fraction of that 10 bucks and make everyone give you their hand? Sometimes peoples actions don’t make any sense at all. 

Anyway, its easy to cry about why players aren’t making millions….. Infact when I first entered running an organisation in e-sports I cried about the same thing. But there is no justification, given the communities spending habits, to pay huge salaries to players.

As I mentioned in my post on reddit, EG is kind of an exception because they have some weird voodoo over their fanboys (jokes) and they get alot of sales.. No one else can do it like them right now.

So where to next? Well…. If we don’t start shoveling out our coins (yes coins, not bank notes) then we won’t see any further growth. The sponsorship market is very competitive, everyone is chasing the same sponsors with a relatively similar product, so there isn’t enough money to spread around to rely on sponsorships. Merchandise is a maybe, but there are not that many people out there able to find reliable cost effective suppliers to make the margin worth it. I did find a good supplier for this, but then he packed up shop. Now its about finding someone trust worthy. So the next step does seem to be somehow getting the community to actually fund the community without hurting their lifestyle. Its relatively easy, if you are under 15 check your sofa cushions, I am pretty sure you can find a dollar there to buy PPV for a month and theres very little else you can buy for that dollar maybe a pack of gum? But hey, we can always floss. 

Its sunday afternoon and my boredom may not provide clear thought so apologise for the jumble. 

Save your coins now lads and ladettes!

<3 FXOBoSs

You can follow me on twitter! http://www.twitter.com/gosutrading

Are the KESPA salaries an illusion?

This blog may ruffle a few feathers. So to be clear, I am merely questioning and not stating whether or not the KESPA salaries are a PR illusion.

Its not lie that Starcraft broodwar was enormous in Korea. There were so many people playing the game, it defies what we believe today about catching the gaming audience, and it most certainly will probably be labelled the biggest game of all time, at least in my books. So is it possible that 1 player was earning half a million USD per year?

I am going to analyse the things that I have witnessed and try to raise some questions that may need answering.

If you look at the pro gamers who are THE pro gamers, from brood war. You will see just another gamer. Someone earning a small amount of money from Ramen, and wanting to be like everyone else. Perhaps this isn’t the best way to put it. 

They behave, act, spend like every other person in the industry with a few small differences. Usually that is the spending of money on alcohol or food for other people, but nothing significant enough to identify vast amounts of wealth. 

Now we see rumors of two high profile brood war players switching to foreign teams. They are rumors, but even I have heard them. Its not often in Korea that rumors turn out false, because people love to talk, especially Korean players.

Foreign salaries are NO WHERE near the advertised KESPA salaries. Even our beloved EG does not have that kind of money especially whilst supporting an entire team. So was the advertised salary an illusion to boost growth in the industry?

There is no legal obligation for organisations to actually state the truth in media when it comes to funding, salaries and expenses. So why not say you are paying someone 500k a yr to boost your exposure and make fans jealous? Its a good marketing tool and no one will ever know the truth apart from the parties involved.

Just to explain again, I am merely questioning not stating this is a fact.

Its hard to fathom that someone like Jaedong, would ever consider joining a Foreign team if they were getting those ridiculous salaries in Korea, with Korean management, Korean culture and Korean conditions. So again, was the advertised contracted salary the actual salary? 

Whilst the two foreign teams in question are notorious for having the best salaries of foreign teams, the industry isn’t exactly bustling with money. I could estimate on how much would be paid to these players based on a historic average from rumored amounts. But who even knows if the rumors are true on the amounts? Maybe everyone is just making 1k a month and getting travel? Theres no public information on all this. So perhaps some transparency would be good?

Anyway, these were just my thoughts when I got into the office. Its more of a question than a statement, so do not go around reddit screaming BOSS SAID THEY ARE LYING!! Because that would be untrue. But as a community, these are the questions we need to ask.

<3 FXOBoSs

You can follow me on twitter http://www.twitter.com/gosutrading

My top 10 pieces of advice to Mr and Mrs Biscuit and their new team

Hello everyone!

Time to blog something constructive. So much crap has been filling our reddit/tl/vg threads I figured this could be something constructive.

To be frank, I know this wasn’t asked of me. And I am in no way being derogatory or insulting or even doubting the capabilities or Mr and Mrs Biscuit. So here goes.

#1 - Get a team house before paying salaries

Team house environment can be used to create the income to pay salaries. Mr Biscuit being the brilliant content creator he is, for sure could come up with something to generate endless ad revenue using a team house environment. Better investment than flights IMO

#2 - Don’t take everything at face value

People and players would love to tell you how much everything is worth. Be sure to do your own analysis, check the market rates and pay attention to them. Don’t over spend, and don’t put all your eggs into one basket as some people would like you to do <3

#3 - Recruit talent, not PR monkeys.

In the long run it will pay off better than the having to reload your PR barrel all the time. Turning a skilled talented player who wins tournaments into a person who is PR capable will be much more valuable.

#4 - Get a full roster

Team leagues are coming, and its the way to go. You should have 5 players minimum to be eligible for the major team leagues and remain competitive. Although its just my opinion, but this is probably the best point to focus on

#5 - Limit players travel

Sending a player to every single event sounds fun and great. But it weakens them long term. The ability to focus and the habits of players change if they are constantly on the road. Keep them grounded and only send them to the best opportunities.

#6 - Sponsorship deck

When you are pitching to sponsors, make sure that you are marketing your self as a niche media enterprise rather than an e-sports team. Its a lot easier to understand for those not involved in the market. You have the ability to capture the audience (you already have it captured) so show the ways you can expose their product. Keep the term e-Sports out of documented pitches, and only use it in verbal pitches.

#7 - Make sure you are in touch with different cultures

Again not doubting someones ability but this is a very big point when acquiring players, especially Korean players. You must know how Koreans react to being told yes, how they react to being told no, how they react to being told “do this”. The Korean culture is an amazing culture, but its very difficult for a westerner to truly understand what is going on and how to interpret things. Don’t take everything at face value.

#8 - Keep in touch with the local organisations

I know you are planning to be an international team, but make sure you are in contact with the likes of KESPA or ESF or GOM or OGN or MLG. Make sure that you have some insight into what is going on so that you can plan accordingly. Again, don’t take everything at face value, make your own decisions (which I’m sure you will) and take into consideration other peoples financial standpoint.

#9 - Keep doing what you are doing

Please don’t let the team interfere with the general happenings of Mr Biscuits youtube channel. This is the fuel for the engine that is your team. Its the one thing the rest of the world does not have and its your bank. Maintain it, even expand it with the team. It will be your greatest asset

#10 - Pick only the best of allies

Pro Sc2 is like high school on steroids. The backstabbing and glitterati that goes on is painful. If you plan on communicating/sharing ideas or partnering with anyone make sure its a sound partnership. Someone on the exact same viewpoint, financial level and direction as you. Even minor conflicts of opinion can lead to bitchy rumors and cat fighting in the background. 

Thats my 10 pieces of advice. I know that they will do well, and become successful. Its in totalbiscuits blood to be successful. 

I leave you with these last words, “Be true to who you are and ignore those who can’t handle that”.

<3 FXOBoSs


You can follow me on twitter http://www.twitter.com/gosutrading 

GOSUTRADING is here!!

In the next 2-3 days, I will be launching my new website directed at teaching e-sports participants how to trade financial markets. With FOREX being the demonstrated market.

A little bit of a backstory.

My mother is a school teacher, she teaches kindergarten and year 1 at a country school in NSW Australia. I have always admired her for what she does, usually because the feedback from the students is good. People used to tell me growing up that my mother was the best teacher.

Now, I am not a qualified teacher, however I do think that education is the best way to achieve goals. Being fortunate enough to grow up with a mother who spent the time to teach me to read and write at a young age, I slowly learned to self educate, and thus learned how to trade. A skill which will forever allow me to be independent in life and will be there when I have struggles (everyone has periods of struggle in their life).

By passing on my knowledge to the e-sports generation, a generation full of talented minds I plan to bring together a new group of traders to the market who will hopefully find success the same way alot of e-sports people did during the poker revolution.

So heres my plan. Every day that I am trading, I will be streaming my trades between the hours of 12pm to 2pm KST (I use KST as its global e-sports time). This will be demonstrative trading. On top of that, I will be preparing simple, short, youtube videos explaining certain things in the markets. Indicators, price action, movements, psychology. All the tools someone needs to make things work.

Over time I will add new features as well such as callback radio/streaming and maybe some news if I get time.

NOW.. some important things to remember.

- This has nothing to do with FXOpen, although I will be using their services and indicating that their trading conditions are the best. This is not a project endorsed by FXOpen. Its purely done by me.

- Trading financial markets is risky (like poker) and you can lose all your money. Don’t ever borrow money to invest in financial markets, and never risk money you cannot afford to lose.

- I am not well spoken when it comes to streaming. So I will try my best to entertain whilst educating. Suggestions are always helpful

- US citizens cannot use FXOpen’s services. So my results may vary on your broker of choice (Demo). I will suggest in videos brokers who can provide similar conditions to the ones I am trading in.

All this will be written on my website and more. 

I am so excited :)

<3 FXOBoSs

You can follow me on twitter http://www.twitter.com/fxoboss

A new e-sports director has joined the ranks of FXOpen e-Sports

I have stepped away from e-sports slightly and moved into a more advisory role since the FOREX world needs me.

It is now up to you SC2 world, to welcome Mr Ilya, to the team.

To add fuel to the fire. He plays league of legends. And I hear he rages out of games frequently. But its ok, we will turn him into an sc2 legend sometime in the future.

To show your support please send him an email fxopendirector@gmail.com

Yes, gmail….Can’t have his life being too ruined. I assure you he will read each and every email.!!!

Spread the word!