Twitter Tries Appealing to Gamers

Ole Spata/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images
Ole Spata/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

Twitter has managed to lure Google’s former director of gaming content on YouTube in an apparent push to make the platform appeal to more gamers.

Rodrigo Velloso is now Twitter’s “director of gaming partnerships.” His mission will be to engage with influential members of the gaming community, from the organizers of major interactive entertainment events like E3 to high-impact streamers from and eSports celebrities.

In a conversation with Variety, Velloso expressed his desire to “work with content creators and give them the tools, or in some cases build them the tools, to allow them to produce the best content.” But if Twitter’s handling of its gaming population is any indication, he’ll face an uphill battle.

In 2015, gaming is expected to make almost $100 billion, easily eclipsing the combined worth of movies and music. Despite that, Twitter hasn’t been especially friendly to the audience of the biggest entertainment industry in the world. They’re a little bit late to the party.

Their alliances tend to be a bit more selective, favoring folks-who-know-famous-guys over the demographic they’re now desperate to reach. They have been as quick to hand out favors to friends of celebrities as they are to censor messages and opinions with which their staff disagrees. It’s going to be a hard sell to those who have been targets of the very specific forms and contexts of harassment of which Twitter has tacitly approved.

Because telling gamers to commit suicide is fine, just as long as they’re on Twitter. #TwitterPriorities

Follow Nate Church @Get2Church on Twitter for the latest news in gaming and technology, and snarky opinions on both.