“I was quite upset about what went down with Deadspin at the end of 2019 and what it suggested about how talent was valued at our company, but I also felt a responsibility to Kotaku, to keep it as strong as possible and still deliver on the potential as a platform to deliver news and opinions about games and game culture to a diverse readership, “wrote Totilo in a direct message to The Post. I did not want to leave when Kotaku was weak, and now that I saw the last iteration of the team kicking in gear in recent months, I felt I could leave with confidence that Kotaku could still thrive. The people at Kotaku and our sister sites are wonderful. ”
Totilo, based in New York City, has been the site̵
“I honestly think he changed the form of video game journalism for the better,” wrote Jason Schreier, a former Kotaku reporter who now writes about games for Bloomberg, in a direct message to The Post. “He transformed Kotaku from a place full of monotonous white male voices to a frontier – site that allowed all kinds of people to flourish. He gave opportunities to people who did not often get them before. In 2014, he mandated that Kotaku’s coverage should focus on the games of today instead of the games of the future, and this has proven to be prior. Today we have taken for granted that gaming sites will continue to cover games long after they have come out, but that was all Stephen. ”
In his announcement, Totilo explained that he would take a month off, after which he would return to game journalism. He did not reveal the destination.
“It felt like a good time for a change,” Totilo told The Post. “Kotaku had a lot of sales. Some great people left, and while we have rebuilt with some great new people, it definitely felt like a chance for me to do something new as well. … I’m proud to have been the longest page on Gawker Media, but 12 years is a long time. Having the chance to do something new that is still true to what I care about was too good to pass up. ”
“He’s going to do PR for Bethesda,” Schreier joked, referring to the publisher’s blacklist of Kotaku, allegedly in response to the site’s coverage of the then unannounced “Fallout 4”.
Perhaps most importantly, Totilo Kotaku ruled when it became the epicenter of “GamerGate”, a controversy originally framed as a concern over journalistic practices that culminated in a long-running campaign against progressive conversations in the gaming industry. Under Totilo, Kotaku published stories that analyzed video games through critical lenses that touched on socio-political issues. While many websites over the years had tried to do this, Kotaku became the most influential and highly trafficked.
GamerGate, which exploded in 2014, is often seen as a precursor to several online movements, not least the campaign to elect Donald Trump in 2016.
This story breaks and will be updated soon.