Gabe Newell responds to the Shanghai Major production drama

Dota 2 Andreea “divushka” Esanu

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Day three at Shanghai Major group stage starts with Valve firing the entire production crew and an unconventional announcement made by Gabe Newell himself via reddit.

Yesterday a shocking twitter post from the event official English host James '2GD' Harding came after the second GSL game series finished announcing he was released from his duties by Valve. The panel resumed with Jorien 'Sheever' van der Heijden taking over as the English panel host and everyone anxiously waited for an official announcement from Valve along with a promised clarification from 2GD. Before James got to post his story, Gabe Newell made a personal reddit post stating the following:

Two things:

1) James. We've had issues with James at previous events. Some Valve people lobbied to bring him back for Shanghai, feeling that he deserved another chance. That was a mistake. James is an ass, and we won't be working with him again.

2) As long as we're firing people, we are also firing the production company that we've been working with on the Shanghai Major. They will be replaced, and we hope to get this turned around before the main event.

As always, I can be reached at [email protected].

The previous events mentioned by Gabe Newell are The International 2, The International 3 and The International 4 where James '2GD' Harding was the panel host. In an interview he gave at TI 4 to Curse, James said “this is probably the last time I am going to host TI” and so it was. No detailed reasoning was given at TI 5 other than he decided not to collaborate with Valve anymore.

The announcement of his return at the Shanghai Major split the community into two camps as his personality and his loose, relaxed style of hosting is not everyone’s cup of coffee.

His thoughts on Valve’s decision are yet to be made public as he decided to sleep on the matter rather than rushing the response:

Going to sleep on it (statement). It's a very very odd situation… I’m not trying to tease, just let me think about this. It's important to me.

However, once Gabe went to reddit, James responded in the 11k comments thread saying:

This is why my statement is taking sometime. It seems more personal than professional. So I will respond. Just for the record gabe, I don't think you are an ass. But I don't think you are right about me (well maybe you are a bit of an ass for calling me an ass, but let's find out what others think shall we?). Brb

In the meantime some of players have started to voice their opinions regarding the Shanghai Major storyline so far. Peter 'ppd' Dager kept a daily Vlog and in the today’s episode he’s giving his two cents on Valve’s decision to fire 2GD.

As polarising as James Harding may be, the most disappointing part with this second Dota 2 Major was the amateurism displayed by the production team. Plagued with an unbelievable amount of technical issues including; severe audio problems, freezing streams, poor lighting studio setup, no working microphones, really badly executed transitions from the casters to the panel and in total more than four hours of delays in each of the first two days, was what truly defined the Shanghai Major so far.

Without exactly knowing who is behind all these, the community flamed a lot toward Perfect World, but the fact is that the one hired to deliver the Shanghai Major production was KeyTV, the Chinese Content Producer based in Shanghai that was also responsible for Nanyang Championship. And if we take a look back we will notice the similarities in the production value of these two events.

An inside perspective at how the English production went down in the first two days can be found in the TwitLonger post made by the English production translator hired by KeyTv.

 Based on my own communication and observation of the Chinese work culture, they are more concerned with saving "face" than to admitting that they are wrong. Mostly delays happen because people are busy arguing about whose fault it is and not working together to figure out solutions. Communication was poor, relations were bad, and work attitude was BAD. (This is a general overview, obviously there are exceptions.

After broadcasting the first two series of the day without a panel, the English stream has managed to improvise a solution and resumed the show with Dakota 'KotLGuy' Cox as host. For the first part of the day it was the crew from Moonduck studio who stepped in and delivered the in between games analysis with Zyori, Purge, Maut, SUNsfan, PimpmuckL and SirActionSlacks.

If you are wondering why the official Russian panel is not affected by this mess, that’s because they were able to bring their own small production team to secure the Russian coverage part for this Major.


Can the Shanghai Major be salvaged?

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Andreea “divushka” Esanu
<p>I can resist anything but temptations... Follow me @DivDota</p>


  • rio "putra_petir" perdana ,
    2GD was fired, but now who is hosting dotamajor Archon vs Newbee ? he sounds like 2gd
    • Andreea "divushka" Esanu ,
      "After broadcasting the first two series of the day without a panel, the English stream has managed to improvise a solution and resumed the show with Dakota 'KotLGuy' Cox as host."
  • Maru "BlitzKaiser" Unson ,
    "James is an ass" - Gaben 2016
  • Lim "Raina" Raina ,
    I am not affected by the 2GD issue, but glad that he acts on the poor production. For me that's already a big move.
  • Sina "pagan-poetry" Tavoosi ,
    It can still be salvaged for the main event, I mean there has been some great dota tournaments in China this year, so I'm sure something can be worked out. Hopefully we can just sit back and watch some good Dota instead of this nonsense. 2GD is what he is, some people like him, some don't. I feel sad for the guy, but let's not forget that he is not the only host around. The important thing now is to get past all this.
  • mangfranks "mangfranks" alingtaling ,
    im glad that he was fired. based from his 16-page statement.. the reason he was an ass because of the poor production. dude you're being paid 12k usd for this event... you should act and talk like a professional even if others around you are not being professional. thats a lame excuse for your poor behaviour. good job valve!
    • johannes "Kasidro" m ,
      in what way was he an ass this event? Did you even read the statement let alone understand it?
      • mangfranks "mangfranks" alingtaling ,
        ah yes.. ive read it all. talking trash about others and being unprofessional is being an ass. You're supposed to exhibit professionalism even if others are not. That's the way it is in the professional world. And you dont blame others for your stupid behavior. Your are being paid to do your job and being a diva and biting the hands that feeds you wont get you nowhere.
        • lubos "lubacos" kovacik ,
          He was asked by Icefrog to BE HIMSELF on panel , because people likes it. So he did what he was asked and payed for. Then he was fired for doing something he was asked to do :)


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