Facebook is playing catch up in the live streaming sector and it wants to be a contender against the likes of dedicated streaming services like Twitch, YouTube and Beam. Twitch itself has become the defacto location for eSports streaming and hosts some of the worlds biggest events for all to see.
Now, Facebook has signed a new livestreaming deal with ESL which sees the social network streaming over 5,500 hours of eSports via Facebook Live. The deal also looks to help ESL create new and unique eSports content.
In the announcement, ESL has confirmed that it will stream all of its IEM and ESL One events to Facebook. as part of the agreement. The deal will also take viewers behind the scenes with backstage AMA’s with the players and commentators. The streams will be available to Facebook users in six different languages via ESL’s regional Facebook pages.
Facebook has also secured the ESEA’s exclusive “Rank S” stream which sees players from North America and Europe fighting for dominance in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. The stream will also include team audio that allows you to hear the teams talking, strategizing and see what it is like within their headsets.
Facebook isn’t the only site that ESL has branched into, they previously agreed streaming deals with Twitter as well as continuing to release content on Twitch.
While Twitch is still arguably the home of eSports streaming, companies like Facebook have a lot of money to put into deals and they see eSports as a key market they want to get visiting their site. Bringing in eSports viewers will allow sites like Facebook to advertise and gather data about the visitors, something they need and want to keep dominating the social space.