With the emergence of various streaming services in recent years, video game live streaming has become a popular pastime both to play and to watch others play. The biggest streamers on platforms like Pull out have managed to garner millions of viewers and turn what was once a hobby into a lucrative career. Streaming is more popular than ever, with celebrities like Soulja Boy trying out Twitch and the platform being featured on popular TV shows has catapulted it into the mainstream.
Some platforms like Microsoft’s mixer have come and gone, failing to make a splash among the more established names. However, since Amazon-owned Twitch has been at the top in terms of popularity and viewership over the past few years, that doesn’t mean it will continue to dominate. Other contenders for the top spot have emerged, like Facebook Gaming and YouTube Gaming, and these services have even led some of Twitch’s biggest names to switch to an alternative streaming platform.
Why the switch from Twitch
Platforms like Twitch and YouTube not only compete for streamers, but also try to outdo each other at every turn with better offers, higher quality content without that constant annoying lag, and coverage of all the popular games. With live streamers and platforms like Twitch becoming more lucrative as their popularity increases, it’s no wonder platforms are vying for the top spot as fiercely as ever.
However, money is not the only motivation. Former Twitch streamer Ludwig Aghren explained that his decision to leave the platform in favor of competitor YouTube was based on how he felt treated by both. YouTube continued to fight for him despite resisting the move, while Twitch didn’t seem overly concerned with his decision, which made Ludwig feel undervalued. Other long-time Twitch streamers have echoed that sentiment, and while more of them have decided to switch platforms, it remains to be seen if YouTube will successfully overtake the streaming giant in the future.
A major problem for streamers that often causes them to switch allegiances when it comes to streaming platforms is the frequency of bans. From copyright issues, swear words, to mushroom emotes that look “too sexual,” Twitch can be known for being pretty persistent when it comes to imposing bans. While many of them are deserved for players or streamers who break the rules or cause offense, the frustration that inappropriate bans can cause is a reason for streamers to leave Twitch in favor of platforms that might be a bit more forgiving.
Every streamer who switched platforms in 2021
With high-profile streamers switching from Twitch to YouTube as early as 2019, it’s only in the last year that YouTube has really tightened its tactics in acquiring popular streamers. DrLupo was the first known defector from YouTube in 2021 when he made the decision to leave Twitch. DrLupo announced his lucrative new deal with YouTube in August 2021, sparked by a desire to spend more time with his family and avoid the demanding schedule required to be a successful Twitch streamer.
DrLupo was quickly followed a day later by TimTheTatman – a much devastating blow to Twitch as reportedly one of the top 10 highest paid content creators. Timothy Betar, also known as TimTheTatman, was a prominent Twitch streamer and joined the platform almost a decade ago. TimTheTatman’s decision to leave the platform after such a long tenure is perhaps a sign of the choppy waters at Twitch.
Ludwig was another top earner on Twitch and left the platform on November 29, although he left the door open for further collaborations. The loss of Ludwig was another blow to Twitch, having previously broken Ninja’s subscriber record during his month-long subathon. At this event, the streamer extended the countdown for each new subscriber that came in, eventually letting Ludwig stream non-stop for a month. Mixing his video game with workouts, cooking and even inviting friends over to entertain his viewers, he made history on the subscriber count platform.
These streamers join other big names like Valkyrae, CouRageJD, LazarBeam and Muselk that have switched over the past few years, leaving Twitch behind to merge with YouTube Gaming. Each has amassed millions of followers on their new platforms, although some streamers like Valkyrae still criticize YouTube for being behind the curve in terms of many of the features Twitch already has.
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