VoodooExtreme is reporting that C-Net is closing its “Gamecenter Alliance” affiliate program at the end of this month, which spells the end of advertiser revenue for huge sites like Stomped, Allakhazam’s, CounterStrike.net and, um, er, ah, others as well.
Overheard on VoodooExtreme’s talkback thread: This is the beginning of the end of of “everyone having their own site and making a living”. That sucks, because I was one of them…
Update: Stacey Roach, aka ‘Marduk’, general manager at XRGaming, had this to say: CNet started the Alliance program in order to bring more awareness to Gamecenter. According to Jason Fischel over at CNet, the program was a huge success and has really increased Gamecenter numbers and awareness.
Of course, if some of you remember, CNet bought ZDNet. ZDNet owns Gamespot. After this purchase, CNet really has cornered the market on their share of gaming entertainment coverage.
The program wasn’t losing money by any means and in truth wasn’t being fully pursued as it *could* have been. I wouldn’t blame CNet for anything other than good business sense.
- They don’t need to grow their numbers anymore now that they have ZDNet.
- The UGO and IGN price wars (where they were charging insanely low amounts for ads when they would lose lots of money by taking ads) hurt the banner market and it’ll take a bit for it to shake out to acceptable levels (and yes it likely will).
- It takes a lot of effort to try to work on target advertising (CNet did a great job, but didn’t want to dedicate more resources to it after the ZDNet acquisition)
Will networks like ours go by the wayside? I expect not, though it is entirely possible. We have a number of offers already and with our network’s size, we are a good asset to companies looking to reach a much larger readerbase. And companies who know advertising can really do well if they use networks like us, Stratics, etc.
We’re not planning on falling off the map though, so I wouldn’t count us out just yet 😛