The Electronic Entertainment Expo, or commonly referred to as 'E3' by gaming companies and consumers alike has started limiting the amount of attendees this year by invoking more stringent qualifications - in order to receive a coveted press credential.
What kind of qualifications?
First, and most importantly, you need to be a website that's actually getting decent site traffic - not just a site created for the sole purpose of getting into gaming expos.
An e-mail sent out to those who are applying for media badges cites several different companies used to determine site traffic and rank among other websites that offer up gaming news service. The applicant's name has been removed for privacy. The e-mail follows:
E3 Expo 2011 show management has placed "caps" on this year's media badge assignments due to the tremendous number of requests for media badges. As part of the overall qualification process, the Media Team uses Compete.com, xinureturns.com, Quantcast.com and Alexa as the standard measurement/ranking tools in determining media badge approvals for online-based applicants.
We require that sites be fully launched, operational for six months, and that the website receives a minimum of 8,000 monthly unique impressions as a baseline for each media badge issued. Quantcast.com, for example, currently has your site listed at approximately 10,000 monthly uniques for the month of December 2010.
Based on the above, we can approve 2 media badges for [redacted] at this time. Additional staff may register as paid Attendees OR another option would be to work on the site traffic and check-back regarding additional staff media badges as we get closer to the show.
Thank you for your interest in E3,The E3 Media Team
Gone are the days where even GameStop employees were granted access to the now slightly exclusive expo.
You can't blame the ESA (Electronic Software Association) for making a decision like this one. While E3 is a chance for the world at large to see what game developers are preparing to unleash upon the masses, corralling a whole lot of people (45,000+ in 2010) into a convention center with the sole purpose of either playing a videogame or talking to someone about the videogame can get pretty chaotic. Obviously, the "crack down" on allotted press passes this year will stifle that number a little bit, but who knows by how much?
Ranters should have no worries as Game Rant will be attending E3 in full force again this year and will be bringing you all the news you rightly deserve - without having to contend against a GameStop employee who's "out sick."