His blog "Xbox Live's Major Nelson" provides an "inside" look at operations at Microsoft's Xbox division. He picked the gamertag Major Nelson after a character by the same name on the 1960s U.S. television comedy I Dream of Jeannie after it was recommended to him by his TiVo. Prior to taking the position at Microsoft in 2004, he was a former programmer and on air host with radio broadcaster Clear Channel Communications.
Hryb graduated from Syracuse University in 1989 with a degree from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. Hryb is often credited with defining how game companies use community and social media to interact with their customers, which has led to the industry investing in community outreach programs. Hryb is most known for his popular weekly podcast "Major Nelson Radio". Direct from inside the Microsoft Xbox team, Hryb and regular co-host Eric Neustadter (known as "e") discuss Xbox, Xbox Live, Xbox 360, gaming, technology, other next generation consoles (including the PlayStation 3, and Wii), and much more in his podcast.
Hryb also frequently invites colleagues at Microsoft to participate in the show, including Laura Massey (Gamertag "lollip0p") and Stephen Toulouse ("Stepto"). His show regularly hosts interviews with people in the gaming community, and offers prizes to listeners through his "Name the Game" contest, where he plays a short audio clip from a game, and a winner is drawn from the correct entries. In addition to the above content, regular features of the podcast include "Xbox 101" (a segment devoted to interesting and sometimes underutilized features on the Xbox 360 or Xbox Live) and the after show (an easter egg where Hryb talks about random topics). Major Nelson and e regularly joke about each other's Gamerscore and gaming habits. On November 6, 2006, he celebrated his '200th' podcast, which was marked with a nearly two and a half hour show.
Hryb openly admits that he added to the show number and the figure doesn't accurately reflect the number of shows made. Hryb switched to a #1xx numbering around July 18, 2005, when he did show #136 after the previous '7/10/05 Blogcast'. Major Nelson was interviewed on the Video Game Outsiders Podcast (show #50), where he said the following: "About a year and a half ago, I started numbering my shows at 100...it makes it sound cooler, bigger numbers are always better." His podcast is one of the more popular on iTunes, with over 120,000 downloads per episode. Hryb's background in broadcast production and radio have enabled him to produce a weekly show that is higher quality, both in terms of content and technical quality.
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