As reported by The Beijing News, Bilibili has made a substantial purchase of League of Legends World Championship streaming rights. The video-sharing company reportedly bought exclusive rights to stream the Worlds in China for the next three years. This will reportedly cost them $38 million USD a year, which sums up to $113 million USD for the entire deal. The news hasn’t been officially confirmed yet but is being treated as reliable.
The censorship of media streaming platforms
As you might already know, the People’s Republic of China has a very strict policy when it comes to media consumption. That is why certain streaming services, such as YouTube and Twitch, are banned and cannot be legally viewed in China. However, China does have its own streaming platforms, such as Bilibili and AfreecaTV. These provide similar content to YouTube or Twitch but still abide by the local censorship laws. Interestingly, Bilibili is often referred to as “the Chinese YouTube.”
However, this becomes a problem when streaming international content, such as the League of Legends World Championship. According to statistics, China has one of the largest League of Legends fan bases in the world. Now imagine what a shame it would be to not allow these fans to watch the biggest esports event of the year. It would be an even bigger tragedy seeing as how Chinese teams dominated Worlds in the last two years.
This won’t be an issue anymore with Bilibili’s recent purchase, having exclusive rights to stream the world championship for the next three years. They apparently beat out Douyu, Huya, and Kuaishou for the broadcasting rights.
Do you think Bilibili’s purchase will have a positive impact on Worlds viewership quality in China? Let us know in the comments!
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