The Armys Latest Attempt To Take Young People From Fortnite To Fallujah
Cutesy anime gifs and heart emojis are the latest dystopian effort to recruit Gen Z meme teens into the worlds most expensive imperial force. Social media, the virtual frontier, is now riddled with military propaganda in bite-sized relatable memes. Internet vigilantes have pushed back by spamming the US Army Discord server with links to the Wikipedia list of US war crimes, quote-retweeting the verified account with the friendly reminder that Gamers can violate the Geneva Conventions in real life by joining the United States Armys Esports team, and otherwise trolling their social media team ragged. But none of that has deterred the Esports team from reaching its intended target: young, impressionable gamers.
As long as first-person shooters remain popular, video games will be the perfect breeding ground for the military to ask gamers to hone their skills before signing up for the real deal. After all, if recruiters know what the kids these days are into , they can convince us all that military service is like summer camp, a place where you can find the people just like you.
While irony-poisoned Twitter helldudes break their keyboard typing Starship Troopers references, the military carries out its plan to anime gif your kids into enlisting.
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Responses To Thousands Apply To Join New Army Esports Team
Uhhh why? I can understand the services having shooting teams because those teams often have other duties like providing training. But what does esports bring to readiness? Or is this just a recruiting tool?
Yeah, a recruiting tool. Readiness in part means qualified people in positions that need to be filled. 30 people taken out of a force of roughly 700,000 doesnt seem like a risky investment here.
Trying to recruit the millennials that seem to have been born with a phone or controller attached to their hand.
Newer helicopter pilots seem to adapt faster to the controls because of this too.
Millennials started being born in the 80s man. Theyve been enlisting for over a decade. This kinda shit is for GenZ kids.
This year, the youngest recruits will have been born in the same year when the 9/11 attacks occurred and OEF began.
Broader Reach Will Benefit Army Esports Recruiting
The Armys esports team has helped to generate recruiting leads through its virtual platform, but it could reach a broader audience by making some adjustments to its approach, according to the authors of a paper on military electronic sports teams.
Esports engaged close to 500 million viewers in 2020, a viewership leveraged by the Army and its sister services to reach young people, according to the paper, Esports and the Military, published by the Center for a New American Security.
The Army established its esports team, one of several outreach teams under Army Recruiting Command, in 2018. Since then, the team has helped expand the Armys online recruiting presence, reaching a target audience of 17- to 24-year-olds with multiplayer, first-person shooter games.
While the soldiers on the Army Esports Team are not recruiters per se, they are part of an outreach team that sits under the Marketing and Engagement Brigade of Army Recruiting Command at Fort Knox, Kentucky, the paper explains.
In some ways, its a sound business decision to use the most popular games that reference basic military skills, but their exclusive use may limit outreach, the authors write, pointing out that the audience is mostly white and male.
To reach women and minorities, the services should consider other types of gaming categories as women are less likely to play the first-person shooter or multiplayer online battle arena games, write authors Elizabeth Howe, Elena LoRusso and Emma Moore.
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Thousands Apply To Join New Army Esports Team
Its essentially connecting America to its Army through the passion of the gaming community, said Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Jones, NCO-in-charge of the budding team.
About 30 Soldiers are expected to be picked for the team and some of the first positions could be filled this summer. Only active-duty and Reserve Soldiers are currently allowed to apply.
Those chosen will be assigned to the Marketing and Engagement Brigade for three years at Fort Knox, Kentucky, where the Army Recruiting Command is headquartered.
While they will not become recruiters, team members will receive a crash course on Army enlistment programs to answer questions from those interested in learning about the service.
Once built up, the team will fall under an outreach company that will also include an Army rock band and a functional fitness team.
Not everyone on the team will compete. Those who will may train up to six hours per day on video games, Jones said, adding that gameplay sessions would be live streamed or recorded for spectators to watch.
Esports has ballooned in popularity in recent years with millions of followers.
In August, the Washington Post reported that esports could generate about $345 million in revenue this year in North America. In 2017, a major esports tournament in China also drew a peak of more than 106 million viewers roughly the same number of those who watched last years Super Bowl.
Its something really new and its been gaining a lot of steam, Jones said.
Us Army Enters Gaming
The Army is no exception to this rule– and they are using the rise of both esports and technology to effectively recruit new soldiers. The United States Army opened its new Army Enterprise Marketing Office in Chicago, Illinois with a new strategy for recruitment in mind– esports. Utilizing the franchise, the army is beginning to not only emphasize brute strength, but dexterity, timing, and quick reflexes. Video games, especially real-time strategy titles or first-person shooters rely on the player’s intuition, combined with their response times to stimuli. For this reason, the Army has taken notice of video games, as they are similar to the training simulations that actual soldiers use. This, combined with recent studies showing the ineffectiveness of cold calling or mailing potential soldiers, has caused the United States Army to create the video game-influenced “What’s Your Warrior?” campaign in 2019, which led to a modern rebranding of the GoArmy webpage and the launch of the very first esports team in the Army.
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You may have some questions about the U.S. Army Esports program. Get the run down in this video! See you online.
U.S. Army Esports
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Win For The Army As Esports Go Live
The British Army launched its first eSports event recently with a win for the British Army team.
A great evening of entertainment kicked off with an inter-corps match between the Royal Engineers and the Royal Signals, where the Royal Signals came out on top, followed by the British Army taking on the Royal Air Force. All teams played over Counter Strike: GO.
COVID-19 has meant that plans for a physical live event needed to be amended to ensure that all gamers could take part in the event remotely, with spectators catching the action live in their own homes. Thankfully gaming lends itself perfectly to this scenario. A large audience engaged in the action with lots of questions and comments posted throughout the event.
Corporal Tyler Daysh, Royal Engineers and an Army Gamer explains how eSports brings soldiers together: British Army esports brings together likeminded soldiers across all Corps and across all platforms, so they can play as a single community with people all over the Army, who are just like them. It was great to play as part of a formed Corps team last night. This is particularly important whilst individuals are dispersed.
Hear From Current And Past Volunteers
Volunteering with British Esports was an invaluable experience. Volunteering as an admin for the British Esports Championships helped me learn more about the esports industry, develop my skills and connections, along with giving me new opportunities and chances to succeed.
Through volunteering and taking on responsibilities, Ive gathered new skills and confidence. And when a paid opportunity arose at British Esports, I applied for it and got it!Alice Leaman, school and college liaison officer, British Esports
Volunteering for the British Esports Association is a fantastic way to gain experience and build relationships within the esports industry. All the staff there are very welcoming and friendly and are more than happy to assist you wherever they can. I was personally able to work on my video editing skills and techniques and gain valuable feedback from professionals within the association who helped me to elevate the content I produced for them.
I also got the opportunity to get involved in other projects, such as hosting a live video editing class on the British Esports stream and competing in their show matches. Overall, if you have an interest in working in the esports industry are looking for somewhere to start, I cant recommend the British Esports Association highly enough.
Saul Spyran Parsons, video editor and streamer
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Thousands Of Soldiers Sign Up To Game On Army Esports Team
Recruiting officials are screening more than 4,000 applications from soldiers who hope to be chosen to play video games full time for the Army.
U.S. Army Recruiting Command may select up to 30 of the service’s top gamers to be on the new Army Esports Team and compete in local, regional and national gaming tournaments.
The Army Esports Team — which will become part of the new Marketing and Engagement Brigade based at Fort Knox, Kentucky — is a component of the new recruiting strategy the service launched after it missed its annual recruiting goal last year by 6,500 soldiers.
Recruiting officials hope that soldiers who compete in these gaming tournaments will help the service connect with this specific, but growing, segment of the American youth population.
Roughly 35 percent of American males ages 21 to 35 participate in this market, which is estimated to be worth $1.9 billion, recruiting officials say. They often play multiplayer, first-person shooter games such as Overwatch and Call of Duty on systems ranging from personal computers to PlayStations, both on their own and in tournaments sponsored by civilian gaming leagues.
Young soldiers are part of this subculture, according to Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Jones, noncommissioned officer in charge of the Army Esports Team.
Jones has been gaming since he was five years old and has a “custom-built PC, a Nintendo Switch, PS4 Pro and an Xbox One X. So if there is a game, I normally play it,” he said.
How Concerned Are You About A War On Christmas
Youre a soldier working your way carefully through a bizarre, colorful environment filled with ramps and sudden drop-offs. Your weapon is at the ready. Enemy troops are everywhere. As one hostile moves into your view, you take aim and fire. Without warning, you find yourself taken out as well, dispatched by an enemy soldier you never saw.
Welcome to combat in the Gamer Age.
Uncle Sam wants you to play Splitgate. If not Splitgate, then Fortnite or another role-playing game. The Pentagon is even willing to pay you to do it.
Electronic sports better known as esports is a form of competition that uses elaborate multiplayer video games. Analysts predict the global audience for esports will grow to more than 450 million by the end of the year and bring in more than $1 billion in revenue.
The Army wants to tap into that market of potential recruits and is embracing esports in a big way. Last year marked the official rollout of the official Army esports team. About 6,500 active and reserve soldiers tried out, and about 16 made the final cut.
We are a competitive gaming team, and were in direct support of the recruiting effort, said Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Jones, the noncommissioned officer in charge of the Army esports squad.
We run constant scrimmages and tournaments to see who our highest competitive soldiers are, Sgt. Jones said. After additional screening processes and interviews, thats how we end up bringing them on the team.
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The Army Esports Team Is Back Online After Trolls Kept Asking About War Crimes
The Army Esports team will begin streaming again this afternoon after a five-week pause that stemmed from a war crime scandal.kind of.
The team temporarily paused streaming on Twitch after public outcry over what some free speech advocates saw as a violation of their first amendment rights, when users who asked Army Esports players what their favorite war crime was were blocked from their Twitch channel.
I dont know that anybody could answer that question, you know, there is no answer to that question. Col. Megan Stallings, the U.S. Marketing and Engagement Brigade commander, told reporters on Thursday.
Stallings said that roughly 300 banned accounts have regained access though she emphasized that it was 300 accounts, not necessarily 300 users. She told reporters that when the team banned users asking about war crimes, new accounts would come right back upasking the same questions, leading them to believe they were created by the same people.
The bans resulted in a letter from the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University sent to both the Army and the Navys recruiting commands. The letter expressed concern over the services unconstitutional banning of users asking about war crimes.
The issue even briefly got attention in Congress, when Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez argued in favor of an amendment that would have blocked funding for recruitment practices on live-streaming platforms like Twitch.
Us Army Has An Eye On The Esports Skillset
It makes sense that the Army would see such success by utilizing esports titles, such as the Call of Duty franchise, as video games are highly-immersive tools for putting a person directly in the centre of the action. First-person shooters like are extremely effective at throwing players in the midst of conflict and putting their quick reflexive actions to the test. A popular move in the games, quick scoping, demonstrates just that, as it relies on the player’s knowledge of their weapon’s range and power to perform. To pull off this move, the player either chooses to utilize the scope of the weapon for a brief second or not at all. A successful quick scope shot will leave the player’s adversary unable to react or escape, as the move takes place in a matter of seconds. Moves like this helped popularize in the competitive scene, as players were excited to see who the quickest shot was. Knowledge of terrain in the games is emphasized just as much as quick reflexes are, as players must know how to navigate maps so they can get the edge on their opponents. Knowing the layout of the in-game map can help the player strategize an effective plan for victory. Again, all of this happens very quickly, as the player has to outmanoeuvre and think ahead of their opponents.
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Lrc Fort Greely Represented On Army Esports Team
Photo By Katie Nelson | Tim Huebscher, left, competes at a Warhammer tournament in Las Vegas as a member of the U.S. Army’s Warhammer eSports team. Huebscher, a materials handler at the Logistics Readiness Center at Fort Greely, Alaska, enjoys this tabletop strategy game because of how mentally engaging it is and is proud to represent the Army in the gaming community. see less | View Image Page
Us Army Esports Is A Pipe Dream For New Recruits
A source who spent time working on the US Army’s Esports Team says the organisation isn’t really about esports
As US Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was readying an amendment to the upcoming years House appropriations bill one that would ban the military service branches from maintaining any presence on social media or Twitch the US Armys Esports organisation had already sounded a full retreat.
It had been a rough few weeks: after being pilloried on Twitter for the use of UwU in a brand-to-brand exchange with chat service Discord, Army Esports was facing heightened media scrutiny after being accused of using deceptive giveaway offers on its Twitch channel, duping viewers into giving recruiters personal information in exchange for a chance to win an Xbox Elite Series 2 controller Twitch itself was forced to step in and stop this from happening. Army Esports was also facing the threat of a lawsuit from free speech activist groups over its practice of banning Twitch users who flooded the channel to ask about US war crimes in stream chat.
Now, to top it all off, a member of Congress was trying to cut the fledgling organisation off from some of its main avenues of engagement, Twitch and other game-related social media, like Facebook and Instagram. Army Esports called a temporary halt to its presence across social media channels to re-evaluate internal policy going forward.
Col. Megan Stallings
A post shared by U.S. Army Esports on Apr 17, 2020 at 9:08am PDT
Army Esports Team Denies Accusations Of Violating First Amendment Offering Fake Giveaways
The U.S. Armys esports team has come under fire for separate allegations of advertising fake giveaways and banning commenters who mentioned U.S. war crimes.
Streaming platform Twitch said the allegedly fake giveaways were in violation of their terms of service, and the ACLU is concerned that banning commenters prohibited free speech.
It looks like what happened was a violation of the First Amendment, ACLU staff attorney Vera Eidelman told VICE.
The Army denied such accusations, with a spokesperson saying comments regarding war crimes were meant to troll and harass the team, and that the giveaways were, in fact, real.
The Armys esports team, which began in 2018, has never had overwhelming public support. The use of popular shooter and strategy games such as Call of Duty Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Fortnite Magic: the Gathering and more to recruit gamers was seen as morally questionable by some.
On June 30, the responded to an announcement by chat platform Discord with the text emoticon UwU and heart emojis. The emoticon is meant to display a happy anime face, and while some sections of the internet use it frequently, others find the emoticon annoying and frown upon its use.
Followers lashed out against the tweet, calling Discord pro-war and referencing incidents like Abu Ghraib. But the backlash didnt stop with Twitter.
As a result of this flood of ban-seekers, the open chat room on the Armys Discord server was intentionally disabled by moderators.