On the screen shot of Twitch, we can see the streamer LIRIK has more than 30,000 active viewers at the moment. Also, he has over 110,000,000 history views and 1,300,000 followers.
Recently, the live streaming has become a trendy topic via media. Lots of people think the fact that it may bring more challenges and opportunities for the social media and modern journalism are fascinating.
The trend begins with game live streaming website TwitchTV. They started primarily focus on game streaming since 2011. The popularity of Twitch would eclipse that of its general-interest counterpart; in October 2013, the website had 45 million unique viewers, and by February 2014, it was considered the fourth largest source of peak Internet traffic in the United States.
On August 25, 2014, it was announced that Amazon.com would acquire Twitch Interactive for US$970 million. However, after the acquisition, “Live Streaming” has officially become a hot topic and trend that everyone can see and read on the news.
Lots of people are actually become full time game live streamers. Yes, they play games and make a living depend on that.
From PC to mobile device games, lots of fans spend money and time to watch E-Sports games or professional gamers on TwitchTV or other game live streaming website. The financial condition of game live streaming is the fastest growing one compared to other format of live streaming.
No matter how trendy the live stream feature is, it still have the paradox and bipolarity among discusses and thoughts that people have. From the good side, everyone agrees it is a better way to reach new content information.
Additionally, it represents the development of information content from image to video and then to live streaming. But, no one can make the claim that live streaming will be the bright future of social media and journalism media.
First important thing that people have concerned about is the profit that the live streaming industry can make. No matter it is an application for mobile devices or a website, the company are spending money that they get from Silicon Valley investors. For examples, Twitch streamers are making money of people’s subscribe ($4.99) and donate. The Twitch website only split with streamer for that $4.99. All the viewers’ donations are belong to the streamer.
Not a single company has found the best way to make profits. It worries people because the company has to keep put found on their equipment with the development with more and more contents.
However, right now the only few ways that they are using is as YouTube: sponsorship advisement or people’s subscribe. It is still the traditional and only way.
The second problem that any live streaming websites have is creating high-quality content persistently and consistently. Keep creating high-quality contents are the only way for any company to keep the viewers and costumers.
However, because all the content from the live streaming are more like impromptu show, the actual streamer cannot function themselves like how John Oliver creates his show.
Moreover, the streamers need to keep up with enough hours to have more interaction with their fans to make their own money; it could make the situation worse. Even for famous streamer like LIRIK, he has to wait for some new game sometimes to draw more viewers.
The third paradox people have argued a lot is that it still has limits on the right of live streaming even the live streaming basically has equal access for everybody. For a person who wants to try live streaming, he cannot get any interested viewers are the beginning.
Even the live streaming claims that it opens to everybody, but the power of being celebrity or being famous are priceless as a starter. If you are nobody, it will be really hard for you to have viewers and followers at the beginning. I did noticed some people who treat live streaming as a full time job only has 200 viewers after one year of live streaming. It is more competitive with more people jump into this business.
The interviews I did with few full time live streamers were really interesting. They were being online and interacting with their fans by the chat section. However, they may not able to see my question if they are popular and have too many viewers at the same time. So I just donate money and leave the message, my donation and message then will show on the screen.
For everyone I asked, I was interested in how they got into the live streaming life, how they feel about their currant career and how they forecast the future of live streaming.
Most of people told me they started the live streaming just for fun and their interests. No one has imagined how fast the live streaming grows. But with time and effort they spend on their channel, lots of people found what they really looking for.
Even it is get harder and harder, most of them still encourage people to begin if they have the passion and interest. Because most of them still believe that the live streaming will keep growing.
“The amount of love in the chat and how community-based it is, that’s what it’s all about. I streamed CS for twelve hours a day for a year and a half, and it’s the same thing every day, but the only different factor between every day is the chat and the community. That’s the only reason I can do it again — because they make it different every day.” Said by JoshOG.