With a career that spans on-camera hosting, producing, and journalism, Geoff Keighley has deftly moved between mediums to report on, produce, host and “eventize” the biggest moments of the year for the video game industry, as well as establish himself as a leading force in a-la-carte journalism with a series of successful iPad apps. While it’s a long way from his humble beginning as a 13-year-old video game journalist reviewing games from his bedroom in Toronto, Canada, Keighley’s multiple ventures across television, digital platforms, and publishing have redefined mainstream media coverage of gaming and cemented his reputation as “Mike Wallace meets Kurt Loder for the video game generation” according to Newsweek.
As Viacom’s Executive in Charge of Publisher Relations, Keighley hosts, producers and spearheads the media conglomerate’s editorial strategy across its media networks, with Keighley appearing as talent on Spike TV, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickeledeon, and VH1. Whether it is a weekly news-magazine show (GTTV on Spike), a roundtable talk show with experts (The Bonus Round on GameTrailers.com), an interstitial series (“Game Head”), the annual Video Game Awards, or even Spike TV’s live coverage of E3, and Comic-Con, Keighley has established Viacom Media Networks as the leading outlet for coverage of the emerging game industry across its diverse portfolio of networks and platforms.
Most recently Keighley executive produced and hosted live one-hour launch specials for both the Xbox One (featuring Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, and Deadmau5) with Microsoft and the PlayStation 4 with Sony on Spike TV, and has produced special live event programming at Viacom for a diverse slate of game franchises including events such as The Music of Grand Theft Auto V, the live launch of Call of Duty: Black Ops II, and countless other launch specials and events for everything from Madden NFL to Halo and Tomb Raider. He also co-hosted and executive produced Viacom’s 11th annual Video Game Awards in December 2013 alongside host Joel McHale.
In 2011 Keighley founded his own publishing group to create a groundbreaking set of iPad apps that Fast Company says are “pushing the limits of storytelling” and “serving as a model for publishing a la carte journalism.” Called “The Final Hours,” these 15,000 word multimedia experiences are written by Keighley and give gamers a fly-on-the-wall perspective of the ups and downs of game development with unprecedented access to the world’s top studios behind games like Portal 2, Mass Effect 3, Tomb Raider, and Titanfall (forthcoming, March 2014). These “futuristic magazine articles” (Kotaku.com) reconnect Keighley with his roots as a game journalist, where he worked for Time Inc as game reviewer for Entertainment Weekly, and as a feature writer for both Time and Business 2.0 magazines. There he not only covered the game business with major features on companies like EA and Nintendo, but also wrote profiles of Cirque du Soleil and internet news entrepreneur Matt Drudge.
Additionally, Keighley is seen as a host on GameStop TV in 4,300 retail locations across the US for the leading specialty retailer, and serves as the co-chairman of the Game Critics Awards, an independent body of the leading journalists in the industry who award the annual “Best of E3” honors.
From the early days of writing for magazines like Computer Gaming World, through television hosting on shows like “Electric Playground” and on networks like G4 (“G4TV.com” “Attack of the Show,”), and producing programs such as the landmark 5-hour Discovery Channel documentary “The Rise of the Video Game” with World of Wonder, Keighley has grown up alongside the video game industry over the past 20 years.
Keighley, who was named one of the top 30 journalists under 30 in 2004 by NewsBios, is a graduate from the University of Southern California.