People Leaving Twitch
- Oct 02, 2021
- 1 Comment
Back in August of 2019, every gaming news platform was discussing Ninja, the largest streamer in the world at the time, leaving Twitch for Mixer. Many other large streamers say Ninja receive a massive multi-million-dollar deal to switch platforms, and many got their own. Dr. Lupo, TimTheTatMan, Shroud, DisguisedToast, and many more have since left Twitch for other platforms. Mixer, Youtube, and Facebook have been the main destinations for ex-Twitch streamers.
So Why Leave Twitch?
Besides the massive upfront money that these streamers have been able to receive for switching platforms, many streamers have described other pain points that caused them to leave.
As most every streamer knows, even us at Vyrus, in order to stay relevant on Twitch, you have to keep streaming. All the time. According to TwitchTracker, the total number of active channels streaming on Twitch has increased from just under 3 million in October of 2019 to 8 million in August of 2021. To keep any sort of viewer retention, you have to consistently be live.
Pixel Plague member, CloverAndOut, describes her own struggles on Twitch, “People come to twitch for entertainment and community. If you are inactive, connections with your viewers immediately start to diminish and they go elsewhere for the entertainment and community they are looking for. It's just the nature of being a streamer. Close friends will always stick by you, but it's hard to have any sort of momentum if your schedule is inconsistent or you have a life event that takes you away from streaming. What I'm not sure about is if other platforms are any different.” Streaming on Twitch is hard. Staying relevant on Twitch and keeping a consistent community is even harder. This is seen not just in the top streamers, but every single streamer. One of the biggest pieces of advice that successful Twitch streamers give to smaller streamers who are trying to make it bigger is, “Just keep streaming.”
TimTheTatMan described streaming on Twitch as being a constant grind. His switch to Youtube allows him to have more family time with his wife and his son. In an interview with Insider, he said, “The reality is, now that I’ve got my wife and my son, it’s hard for me to stream as much as I did beforehand.” This indicates that Youtube requires less live time, whether that be in his contract or just what’s necessary to stay relevant on the platform.
It seems to be that at least for massive streamers with an already dedicated audience, “the grind” just isn’t necessary on these smaller platforms where they are on top. If I could take a multi-million-dollar deal to work less and have more flexibility with my time, I know I’d take it.
The Impact on Twitch
One of the biggest questions when large streamers leave twitch is how it will impact the platform as a whole. Before Ninja left in August of 2019, Twitch had an average of 1.3 million viewers at any given time. Twitch did not recover back to this number until January 2020 when people started to stay inside for some weird global reason.
TimTheTatMan left twitch on September 1st, yet Twitch’s numbers between August 2021 and September 2021 are pretty much even. TimTheTatMan was not as large as Ninja on Twitch, so less of an impact is expected. In addition, as the world opens up a bit more, streaming viewership is expected to decline as well.
A Day Off Twitch
Massive contracts and lack of work-life balance aren’t the only reasons to leave Twitch. On September 1st, there was an organized boycott of Twitch where streamers and viewers were encouraged to take a day off of Twitch in hopes to send a large financial message to Twitch to put a stop to hate raids taking place on their platform. Members of the LGBTQ+ community and minorities have been the targets of these raids, forcing some streamers to end stream early and, for a lot, not want to come back to streaming at all.
Zach Bussey, founder of CreatorHype, covered some statistics of A Day Off Twitch. He stated that on that day, there were 5000 less streamers live and 500,000 fewer viewers than the week before. In terms of ad revenue, this is a MASSIVE impact.
The total number of streamers at 4pm that day was 12,000 less than it was at that same time the week prior.
Surprisingly, Twitch heard the community loud and clear and is attempting to make some action as a response to the hate raids. According to NBC News, “Twitch is taking legal action to help marginalized users of the platform combat ‘hate raids,’ which is when users or bots infiltrate a chat with harassment, often aimed at Black and LGBTQ streamers.”
“The streaming site filed a complaint last Thursday in the U.S. District Court for the Northers District of California against two of its users for repeatedly flouting its community guidelines against harassment.”
We’ll see how much of an impact this has on hate raids. From what I’ve seen, they are still happening at an alarming rate and they do not look like they will stop any time soon.
Competition in business is always good. Nike wouldn’t have to come out with new designs or better performing shoes if Adidas and other companies were competing for the same space against them. Streamers leaving Twitch for other platforms is good. Even if Youtube is a massive platform in its own right, the live portion of it hasn’t quite taken off yet. I hope that it does. I wish Mixer would have stuck around, I hope Youtube takes off, and I hope Facebook is able to create its own platform as well.
It’s awful to see the types of lives streamers have to live in order to stay relevant and successful on Twitch. You see streamers have mental health fallouts, constantly only eat Uber Eats, or just not have time for other life activities in general. It’s hard, as a viewer, to want to be entertained by people who are destroying their mental and physical health for the sake of entertaining you and putting more money in their pockets.
This is a wildly extreme example but take a look at Nikocado Avocado. A once extremely talented violin player that has sacrificed their livelihood for YouTube views. It’s disgusting.
And don’t get me started on the hate raids. The fact that Twitch, a MASSIVE company, hasn’t put this at the tippy top of their priority list is beyond me.
Twitch stinks. The gaming community deserves better.
Don’t agree with me? Want to rant about it more? Want to talk about something entirely off topic? Slap a comment below or reach out to the Vyrus twitter account.