ESA Swears E3 2020 Will Be Different – Don’t Believe Them

Posted in: Gaming NewsOp-ed
January 30, 2020 5:46 PM UTC

The ESA's plans for E3 2020 don't instill confidence despite recognizing that the event needs to be updated and revitalized.

  • The ESA offers a sneak peek at E3 2020 plans.
  • The E3 organizer is actively listening to feedback to create a “revitalized” experience.
  • The ESA is introducing a new media registration process following last year’s media data leak.

Today, the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) offered a first sneak peek at what we can expect from this year’s edition of E3.

A ‘Revitalized’ Experience in 2020

In a statement published on its website, the E3 organizer explains that it is actively listening to feedback from attendees and the industry to shape a revitalized 2020 E3 experience.

The “revitalized E3” apparently doesn’t start with the logo. | Source: ESA

The changes appear to stem from the acknowledgment of a sense of fatigue within the gaming community with E3’s existing format. It may also be a reaction to Sony announcing its absence from the expo in 2020 for the second year running.

With plans to “reinvigorate the show and, frankly, to shake things up,” the ESA says:

We are well down the path on the development and production of a large, super fun floor experience that celebrates gaming culture in exciting new ways.

The ESA stopped short of sharing practical details other than vaguely promising fresh content programming for those at home and a show floor shaped around playing and celebrating games.

Attendees can expect surprise guests, on-stage events, and what it calls “experiential zones” within its regular Los Angeles Convention Center venue. It appears the ESA is working to retool E3 into a fan-focused event.

About That E3 2019 Data Leak…

Tackling the contentious issue of last year’s massive media data leak, the ESA revealed a revamped media registration process designed in collaboration with a third-party cybersecurity firm.

New management processes will be introduced, less personal data gathered, and data will no longer be stored on the ESA website.

The ESA says:

Earning back your trust and support is our top priority.

A change of pace is indeed welcome, not to say needed. But the platitudes of the statement don’t instill too much confidence.

Under normal circumstances, the desire to keep some aspects of the expo under wraps is understandable. But, in the wake of waning interest, the statement lacks concrete examples of how E3 2020 will differ from 2019.

Parts of ESA’s statement ring a bit hollow. | Source: ESA

The new security measures, in particular, ring hollow as nothing more than lip service to those affected by last summer’s leak.

Let’s not forget that the personal details of over 2,000 media attendees were readily accessible to anyone on ESA’s website. Referring to it as something “received a lot of attention this past summer” will undoubtedly draw the ire of those affected.

Nevertheless, there are positive takeaways.

The ESA appears to recognize that E3 has issues. The organization is actively seeking and listening to feedback. The statement asks those with suggestions for E3 2020 to get in touch. According to the ESA, no idea is “too large or too small.”

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of CCN.com.

This article was edited by Josiah Wilmoth.

Thomas Bardwell @TomBWrites

UK-based video game writer. Contact: thomas.bardwell[at]ccn[dot]com

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