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Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO

The NeoGAF Forums have a post from Sam Kennedy, director of the 1Up Network, commenting about yesterday's news that UGO has acquired 1Up (thanks Rosenberg’s Ramblings & Joystiq). A good deal of anger has been expressed at UGO (who supply the advertising for this site), but Sam tries to make it clear that he feels UGO are not the bad guys here, as 1Up was losing money for years, a situation that has been exacerbated by a bad economy, and that UGO did their best to "save" the network. To be clear, he is not happy about the situation, calling yesterday the worst day in his life, but here's a bit offering is outlook on what happened:

And I'm not here to defend this. It freaking sucks. But from my vantage point, UGO did what they could to, what I consider, "save" 1UP. Obviously, all of us would have wanted to see things go differently -- most of all me, considering I just lost many of my closest friends as coworkers and employees today.

A couple of things to realize, though:

Fact: 1UP was a business that was losing money.

Fact: This economy sucks and the ad market is diminished.

Fact: Ziff Davis has been trying to offload 1UP for years.

With those sorts of factors playing against us, something had to give. Everyone loved the stuff we did, but our business wasn't in the best of shape (see: Ziff-Davis files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last summer).

My hope in all of this, over the last year or so, was that some company would come along and be able to buy 1UP -- the entire operation -- and run with it. And I think UGO had actually originally approached 1UP with those same hopes.

But the reality of the market was that no company, including UGO, was willing to sustain 1UP as it was. And that includes Ziff Davis. I hate to to break it to you, but the sad fact was that there was little hope for 1UP to continue as it had been. Not in this economy. If any company out there would have been willing to support us as we were, they certainly didn't step up.

The only company that really did was UGO, and they did their very best to continue 1UP.

So like I said, while UGO may appear like the bad guy here, in a lot of ways, they just did what few, if any, other companies would. And, from everything they've indicated to us, they are completely supportive of 1UP and its people. Believe me, they were in the office today and were just as distraught about the losses of any of these shows and the people.

Of course, that doesn't make things any better for any of us. Fact is, we -- as in, the games industry, not just 1UP -- are losing some great things today. I'm with you in mourning. But I have a commitment from the UGO guys that they -- now, actually, we -- are going to do whatever we can to help these guys out and look for ways to continue these shows with them and/or to look into possibilities for new shows in the future. I'm not saying everything will be back to "normal" as you knew it anytime soon, but I am saying there should be some good things to look forward to in the future.

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19 Replies. 1 pages. Viewing page 1.
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19. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 20:38 Kxmode
 
One site to rule them all.

*cough* GameSpot *cough*
 
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18. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 20:29 Kxmode
 
I really don't care about 1UP. It's yet another commercial gaming shill site. Please do us a favor and die a silent death. Please spare us your painful life drama, Sam Kennedy.

You fail. They died a silent death.

This comment was edited on Jan 7, 2009, 20:40.
 
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17. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 20:00 ldonyo
 
Ziff Davis has been in trouble financially for so long I'm surprised they haven't just plain folded by now. Personally, I think that would have been better for the planet, as very little has come out of Ziff Davis in printed form over the last decade that was worth a damn. EGM was wretched, unless you have the mind of a retarded 10-year-old.

I never bothered with 1up.com, as most of the writing from the GFW crowd seemed to cater to sexually bewildered adolescents. Their reviews may have been accurate, but only if you could translate the review into something passable as English.

Hopefully, what remains of 1up will have a chance to thrive on UGO.
 
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16. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 19:42 Exe
 

EGM/FileFront/Gamevideos/MyCheats/Gametab...

Can't say I visit any of those sites on a regular basis. I see links to things on filefront fairly often and avoid them as much as possible.

I use the IGN/Fileplanet/Gametrailers sites more often.

You use fileplanet over filefront? One rarely has a wait and you don't pay for. The other charges you for normal speeds or forces you to wait 20 min.
 
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15. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 19:15 Creston
 
What, no government bail out? What what what?

They were by no means incompetent enough to warrant a bail-out. Only the ones who TRULY fuck up for decades on end get a the government's golden goose.

Creston
 
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14. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 18:37 Halo
 
One site to rule them all.  
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13. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 17:48 elefunk
 
LittleMe, I'm sorry, but you have no fucking clue what you're talking about. 1UP was the ANTITHESIS of a "corporate shill site".

Every part of 1UP has absolutely refused to do any sort of exclusive review for years as a policy. Fanboys have attacked the site and magazines for years because of "WHY SO LOW" reviews. Fuck, Ubisoft boycotted them entirely because of their somewhat average Assassin's Creed review that ended up being one of the most accurate of the bunch. Listening to them speak, meeting them at PAX, reading their writing, and watching their video specials will tell anyone with a brain that these guys valued their honesty towards their community above all.


The 1UP staff, its articles, and its podcasts contained some of the best writers, best personalities, and most "true hardcore gamers" of any such site on the web. You've obviously never paid jack shit attention to anything they've done, considering that you labeled them with a completely baseless and out-right insulting blanket statement.

This comment was edited on Jan 7, 2009, 17:55.
 
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12. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 17:09 Cyanotetyphas
 
filefront carries the entire mod community on its back like Atlas, I wouldn't speak bad about them.

The real issue here is how can the internet survive on a sort of unimpressive ad impression business model? It looks like even having your hand in the industry's pockets isnt a sure thing.
 
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11. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 16:30 Krovven
 
So much for gaming being recession-proof.

I've said it before, I'll say it again...

The companies of any industry, that are in trouble now, were already in trouble long before the "recession" started. They are just now in panic mode to either unload costs, or shut down because they will never be able to pay back their debt. If you read the article, you'd see that he said 1up hasn't made money in years...this has nothing to do with the recession!

Most of which were heavily in debt with not enough revenue coming in. Gaming magazines have been moving away from the printed format to web for years and a few of the bigger mags have announced recently they are also going web only.

Something had to give with the massive glut of web based gaming news sites.

Now to the point...GAMING SALES ARE UP, NOT DOWN...despite the recession. So if a company was being properly managed from the top down and wasn't in debt for far more than should ever be allowed, most will be fine.
 
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10. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 16:01 CrimsonPaw
 
Well, it's been a little over a year since Gertzman-Gate so it was time for another gaming upset. The only thing I'll miss is 1Up Yours (which I only listened to because The Hotspot started sucking after the mass exodus of the Giant Bomb team), but I'll find something to fill that void.

I agree, 1Up was a cluster of a site; it reminded me of a kid with ADD, trying to do something but losing its focus.
 
~~Crim~~
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9. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 15:52 Kosumo
 
What, no government bail out? What what what?  
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8. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 15:41 Tumbler
 
Hmm, 1up, don't think I've ever gone to this site...

Hmm seems to be similar to IGN. Other sites in it's network include:

EGM/FileFront/Gamevideos/MyCheats/Gametab...

Can't say I visit any of those sites on a regular basis. I see links to things on filefront fairly often and avoid them as much as possible.

I use the IGN/Fileplanet/Gametrailers sites more often.

Although I'd say 99% of the time I hit meta critic first... And I only bother visiting the review sites if I want to see something like a video clip of the games.

There are a lot of sites like this, and some of them are going to have to go.
 
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7. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 15:25 LittleMe
 
Yea, I totally agree, it's much better for people to be laid off and unemployed just because you don't agree with them. Fucking moron.

I don't want them to be unemployed but geez, its a gaming review site as a business. It's a shill. They are a propaganda arm of a commercial gaming industry that bullshits us all the time. So what, they go out of business or shrink. This is how it works in the business world. Their issues have nothing to do with whether or not I agree with them. Stop the grade-school level name calling.

This comment was edited on Jan 7, 2009, 15:27.
 
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Perpetual debt is slavery.
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6. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 15:21 nin
 
Oh woe is me. I kept my job.

wanker...

His lips locked on that new employer so fast, it's kinda disgusting...
 
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5. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 15:15 Agent.X7
 
Couldn't stand the site myself. We have some rotten apples on Blues, but just about everybody on 1UP was a complete douche. When your writers show as much professionalism as a 15 year old on crack, you should take that as a sign that somethign needs to change. They didn't, and so they lose.

The site was also "organized" in way that brought about an image of a web designer with cerebral palsey.
 
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4. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 15:12 Caveman
 
I really don't care about 1UP. It's yet another commercial gaming shill site. Please do us a favor and die a silent death. Please spare us your painful life drama, Sam Kennedy.

Yea, I totally agree, it's much better for people to be laid off and unemployed just because you don't agree with them. Fucking moron.
 
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3. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 14:42 strich
 
Oh woe is me. I kept my job.

wanker...
 
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I don't believe in a lot of things, but I do believe in duct tape.
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2. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 14:32 LittleMe
 
I really don't care about 1UP. It's yet another commercial gaming shill site. Please do us a favor and die a silent death. Please spare us your painful life drama, Sam Kennedy.  
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Perpetual debt is slavery.
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1. Re: Sam Kennedy on 1Up & UGO Jan 7, 2009, 14:19 Caveman
 
So much for gaming being recession-proof.  
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19 Replies. 1 pages. Viewing page 1.
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