Serbian company Relog Media is being accused of underpaying members of the broadcast talent team working its Counter-Strike: Global Offensive events.
CSGO commentator pr0nogo accused Serbian company Relog Media and its partner GRID Esports of underpaying its on-air broadcast talent. The companies are best known for the production of the Snow Sweet Snow and Pinnacle Cup events.
Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time to stop beating around the bush. Meet @EsportsKieran, a talent manager for @GRIDesports threatening to fire his #SnowSweetSnow talent for discussing their rates.
You’ll be getting to know Kieran very soon. This is just a taste.
Welcome to esports. pic.twitter.com/KliBSATZH8
— Pr0nogo (@pr0nogo) March 10, 2021
According to pr0nogo, Relog Media offers its casters 35€ for a best-of-three series and 12.50€ for a single map of broadcast work. Both of these rates are prior to taxes, as the casters work on a freelance basis. For a playoff series, Relog Media increases its rate by paying the talent between 80-100€.
The relatively low payments are in addition to a claimed unusually high workload imposed by Relog Media. According to pr0nogo, casters are required to work two best-of-three series per day.
What this means is that casters must be willing to work long hours if they expect to be paid at all, even at a rate that’s below market.
Other sources with knowledge of the contract claimed that these rates are accurate for Relog, but there was disagreement with some of pr0nogo’s claims.
WIN.gg was told that Relog hires its talent for several events at a time, leaving casters and observers free to look for other work. The same source said that the company operates with a limited budget and that the lower rates being offered are reflective this.
But Snow Sweet Snow has drawn in some big teams with its prize pools. Ninjas in Pyjamas, Cloud9, and MIBR are competing in the current tournament, while FunPlus Phoenix and Dignitas have previously participated in the events. Relog’s Snow Sweet Snow offered competing teams a $60,000 total prize, with the winner taking home $40,000.
pr0nogo went on to claim that Grid talent manager Kieran Cullinan had intimidated casters during the recent Snow Sweet Snow tournament after the amounts talent were paid had been made public.
“…I advise you go (sic) and read section 6.1 of the contract you all signed, headed “Confidentiality, Data Protection”. Any further news I hear about this will result in immediate dismissal,” Cullinan said.
One source said that Cullinan sent the message on Discord, but WIN.gg was unable to verify the original logs to confirm this.
Following pr0nogo’s initial tweet, several community casters came forward alleging that a different company, Vortex Entertainment, has also paid well below market rates for its broadcast talent. Prior to being employed at GRID, Cullinan was the co-CEO of Vortex.