As we covered back in November, ESPN made waves when they cut their esports editorial team. This move left a number of esports journalists without a homebase, among them acclaimed writer Jacob Wolf. Now, starting off 2021 with a bang, Wolf has joined the team at Dot Esports. Wolf, who was recently nominated for “Esports Journalist of the Year” at 2020’s Esports Awards, has officially accepted a position as Dot Esports’ chief reporter and investigative lead.
At just 23-years-old, Wolf has made a name for himself as what The Washington Post calls “one of the leading news breakers in the world of esports.” Prior to his tenure at ESPN, Wolf had worked for the Daily Dot. Although Dot Esports was bought by Australian company Gamurs Group back in 2016, Kevin Morris, the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Dot Esports, is still with the website. Morris had been Wolf’s mentor the first time around and tells The Post that “he is excited to be editing Wolf again.”
Wolf, who was named Journalist of the Year in 2018’s Esports Awards, first got started as a reporter at age 18 after graduating high school early. The Georgia native was attending West Georgia Technical College studying computer information systems before he decided to withdraw and pursue a career in journalism, a pivot which has proven to pay off. Especially considering the fact that many journalists in Wolf’s position (The Post notes that “the journalism industry at large… has shed half of its newsroom jobs between 2008 and 2019 and at least another 11,000 jobs in the first half of 2020”) have not been presented with the same opportunities following similar layoffs. While many out-of-work journalists might struggle to find their next position, Wolf “said he was in discussions with dozens of outlets and was swayed by the opportunity to rejoin his mentor.”
Along with joining his former mentor at Dot Esports, Wolf now has the opportunity to mentor others himself. Morris at least hopes that will be the case, telling The Post that “he hopes the addition of Wolf will also help benefit the careers of some of the younger reporters at Dot Esports. This includes new talent they are bringing in, such as 18-year-old Pablo Suarez.” Just as Wolf benefitted from working with Morris as an 18-year-old journalist at Dot Esports, this time around Suarez is in a position to benefit from working with the now 23-year-old Wolf. Wolf himself feels that he has “a responsibility to continue reporting on esports, for now,” saying: “This space took me, a once very lower-middle-class kid in Georgia, to become a very successful journalist. I feel like I owe this industry. I owe it to these people to do good journalism.”
In finding a new/old home at Dot Esports, Wolf is placing himself in a position to live up to the sense of responsibility he feels for the industry. As a journalist, he will be able to help the next generation find their voice in a difficult and shrinking arena. In a world where he could have easily taken his accolades and pivoted into content creation or consulting, the fact that Wolf has decided to continue his journalist endeavors is an encouraging example of the value in his work and the work of his fellow journalists.