Fifteen years ago, streaming was a word billions of people had never heard of or were not exactly sure what it meant. However, today, it is a common term in our everyday vocabulary, primarily due to the establishment of video content platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Instagram Live, and Twitch. The latter is a spin-off of the general interest site – Justin.TV. It initially acted as that hub’s game section before branching off and eclipsing the popularity of its originator.

Much has gotten made of Twitch’s late-2010s and early-2020s rise, with the number of hours of video game streams viewed on it going from 3.6 billion in 2019 to 8.8 billion two years later.

During the start of the COVID pandemic, likely thanks to the government-imposed lockdowns, this site saw rapid growth in the first half of 2020 that maintained for a year before notching a 15% drop in June 2021. At the beginning of 2023, Twitch recorded a 9.4% decline in average concurrent viewers and hours watched year-on-year. There are multiple reasons for this, and for YouTube’s growing appeal to streaming fans, with the main ones getting explained surface-wise in the subheading below. So, buckle up, and let us explore the topic at hand.

Hate Raids and Toxic Culture

Over the past few years, Twitch has gotten plagued by what many have labeled as a toxic environment, encapsulated by hate raids, a phrase defining flooding streamers’ chats with insulting/offensive messages, usually on discussions probable to elicit a reaction, such as one concerning gender and color.

While the hub’s staff has taken steps to address this problem by penalizing abusers, the phenomenon has not gone extinct. It is still alive, with streamers getting advised to clear their chats and ban raid-involved accounts. Still, these attacks persist, and there is no end in sight, as they seem to have become a staple on Twitch.

Devaluating Streamers & The Platform

Have you heard of the Hot Tub Meta controversy? It began with women streaming in bikinis, which opened the doors for various hot-button (pun intended) conversations regarding if creators have exploited policy loopholes for views. And do sexualized streams devalue the site overall?

The trend also led to many undermining the legitimacy of the streamer profession. Moreover, the emergence of gambling feeds also caused many other issues, with some users pointing out the dangers of this streaming genre, exposing minors to online betting activities and casino sites. What also lifted dust in this niche was that a decent majority of users showing their wagering sessions did not divulge they use fun credits, tricking viewers into believing that they are playing with real money when, in reality, they did not even have a Vegas low-roller net worth.

More Growth Potential on YouTube

As everyone probably knows, YouTube Gaming got built for uploading lasting content. Therefore, it has a broader search engine, a more substantial user base, and a better indexing algorithm. That combo leads to more sizeable growth potential for newcomers.

For most, discoverability is more challenging on Twitch, and YouTube’s Partner Program supplies advertisement monetization via access to Google’s AdSense. So, overall, it is easier for people to thrive on YouTube because of its massive use globally and algorithm-driven discoverability. Money-making opportunities on the world’s most established video-uploading platform will grow as it displays an ever-growing streaming focus.

Twitch’s DMCA Issues

DMCA stands for the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. For streamers, this regulation is primarily related to violations of copyright music playing during streams. To avoid DMCA-related problems, Twitch users should simply refrain from playing copyrighted music, asking for use permission, or purchasing the rights to play it. Of course, YouTube has faced similar issues, but Twitch’s handling of DMCA claims was the aspect that boosted multiple concerns, generating outrage, and it was the thing that chased many streamers off the hub.

What High-Profile Twitch Users Have Left?

We are living in a time during the Internet’s lifespan that some refer to as the streaming wars, which technically started between Twitch and Mixer, the now-defunct Microsoft platform, when Ninja ditched the first for the latter. The official battle between YouTube and Twitch began, by all accounts, in early 2021. Since then, name-users that have left Twitch for YouTube are DeLupo, TimTheTatman, Ludwig, Sykkuno, LilyPichu, Myth, FaZe Swagg, and Fuslie.


Is Twitch Use Really Down?

Yes. In 2022, the site had 2.58 million concurrent viewers on average, which represents a 6% decrease from the 2021 figure.

Is YouTube Streaming Up?

Yes. In early-2023, stats show that 694,000 hours of video, on average, get streamed on YouTube per minute.

How Do YouTubers Monetize Streams?

They can rake in the dough by enabling Super Chats and Super Stickers for live viewers, turning on ads, allowing channel memberships, and looking for sponsors.

To Sum Up

According to various Internet pundits, the streaming war began in 2021, and nowadays, Twitch is getting fierce competition from YouTube, which highlights live video feeds now more than ever. That commitment of the Web’s second-most visited site is evident through its new Partner Program prerequisites, which came into force in June 2023. The scheme unlocks channel memberships, Super Stickers, Super Chats, Super Thanks, and the capability to showcase products on YouTube Shopping. These features should facilitate higher earnings for streamers starting, enhancing YouTube’s allure.

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