Up until yesterday, there were two names that everyone recognized when it came to live streams: Twitch and Own3d. Today, however, that number is reduced to one. Two days ago, CEO Oleg Kogut announced via the Own3d.tv blog that the popular live-streaming service was closing its doors, effective January 31st.
The news came as no shock to those in tune with the live streaming community at large. Own3d.tv has apparently been having financial issues for some time. Former professional Starcraft 2 player Destiny wrote on his blog that Own3d had trouble paying him his signing bonus (agreed to when Destiny switched from Twitch.tv to Own3d at the beginning of 2012) and that he had not received any of the agreed upon Premium subscription cut that he was due since July.
The Own3d.tv brand is no stranger to the EVE Online community, despite Own3d being mainly used by MOBA streamers. Own3d was, of course, the host of CCP’s New Eden Open tournament just a short time ago. Despite being the first into the market of live streaming, it appears that a variety of small business decisions (such as focusing primarily on the European market, making poor long term contracts, and failing to invest in much advertising aside from sniping prominent Twitch streamers) all ultimately led to the company’s failure.
There was some hope earlier in the month that Own3d.tv would live on under the aegis of Machinima.com. Buyout negotiations, rumored to be in the five million dollar range, fell through in mid-January, leading ultimately to yesterday’s announcement.
Hosted videos on Own3d.tv appear to have vanished into thin air, unless backed up privately by viewers or by the streamers themselves. Many Own3d.tv partners have already begun the process of switching to Twitch.tv, even if only temporarily. Counter Logic Gaming, one of Own3d.tv’s most prominent partners, has stated via Twitter that they intend to move to AzubuTV when that service is launched. For the time being, however, Twitch.tv reigns supreme in the realm of live streams.