The Downside of Growing as a Streamer?

During a recent Paper Mario stream, I received a really interesting comment in the chat from a recent follower.

This may seem mean, I hope you get to be a really big streamer, but I also hope you stay small so you can interact with us like this

I have never been on a stream like this with streamer interacting like this

First off, thank you Pokemaster457 for the high praise and support! Secondly, I totally understand what you mean when you say you want me to stay small.

For years, I only used Twitch to watch fighting game tournaments. Wanting to watch the best players in the world duke it out, I had no expectations for talking to the players or the commentators on the other end of the camera. Also, the conversations moved so fast that it doesn’t even seem possible to hold a conversation with anyone in the chat.

With “personal” streamers, I didn’t see the appeal at all. The combination of watching a stranger play a game, who isn’t one of the best players in that game, and a chat that still moved too fast for anyone to keep up wasn’t something I wanted to engage in. At most, I’ll watch a VOD later at my own convenience.

It took two things for me to understand the appeal in the viewer/streamer relationship. As a small streamer, my chat is slow enough for me to keep up. I’ve always made it a point to read every message aloud as they come in, which has since grown to be a big part of my stream.

Interacting with viewers has grown to become the most fulfilling part of streaming, as I get to connect with gamers the world over and have cool conversations about basically anything. I come prepared with topics to talk about, but it’s been a pleasure discussing what’s on your mind. The types of conversations that occur on my channel vary greatly based on who tunes in, which makes it feel like a different show each time. Being a part of this ongoing global dialogue has truly been a pleasure.

Around the same time, I discovered small streamers that really hooked me in. As a chatter, it’s great to be able to have a conversation with the streamer, even if it’s a weird asymmetrical communication system where I’m typing and they’re talking. Building that connection only builds on my investment in the games they’re playing. Even when it’s not a game I’m that interested in, I’ve hung out in the chat for hours with a streamer I admired because I enjoyed their company that much.

This level of connection and interactivity is possible in part because I’m a small streamer and I’ve been watching small streamers. As much as I want to see my channel and those that I follow grow, the chat would inevitably move at a pace where one can’t keep up anymore. There are settings I could noodle with to allow only followers or subscribers to participate in the chat, but that limits the opportunity for me to connect with new viewers. Even as a viewer in a chatroom that has around five viewers, I can get intimidated to chime in when the conversation moves without me or the streamer is focused on talking to someone else in the chat.

That is a problem for another day. Trying my hardest to grow the channel, but I simply can’t see a world where it blows up to that point in the near future, if ever. Nevertheless, will continue to stream and enjoy the benefits of streaming at this scale! And maybe one day, if I’m fortunate enough to have the problem of the chat being too busy, I’ll have a better solution in place to try and keep the interactivity going.


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3 thoughts on “The Downside of Growing as a Streamer?

  1. Kris P. March 18, 2019 / 7:52 AM

    This is a really good point. I’ve joined a couple of chats here and there with some of the bigger channels I follow, really only saying a few things such as greeting the streamer and the other chatters. The majority of the bigger streamers I’ve watched do their best to look at the chat and talk as much as they can, but on the other hand, the chat itself becomes a community.

    Those in the chat talk to each other just as much as they try to get the streamer’s attention, and it’s interesting seeing the friendships that develop between the chatters that share the love of a certain content creator. Considering how mean-spirited the Internet can be at times, one of Double Jump’s personal goals with streaming is to foster an open and friendly community if we ever become “bigger streamers.” I enjoy seeing the chatters talk with each other just as much as I enjoy talking with chatters.

    With that said, as we try to grow as streamers, our other social medias will (and, arguably, should) probably grow as well. Sharing our Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, etc., is another way chatters can reach out if they want a little one-on-one conversation or be certain that their comment is heard.

    Pokemaster457’s sentiment is sweet, though. We know first hand how engaged you are with your chatters and it always makes the stream itself more inviting and fun. 🙂

    • Jett March 18, 2019 / 8:38 AM

      You bring up some great points! Conversation amongst the chat is great as well. I’ve bonded with a number of people that I’ve crossed paths with on your stream.

      Social media opens more doors for someone to reach the streamer directly. While I think I have the “post cool stuff” part of it down, I’m still really uncomfortable with using it as a forum for public/private conversation. More of a personal quirk.

      Thank you for the compliment! Means a lot to hear that from one half of my favourite streaming channel #shoutouttorachel. Hope you two achieve everything you want out of streaming and I’ll continue to enjoy your show as often as I can!

  2. Pete Davison March 18, 2019 / 9:28 AM

    I don’t tend to watch “big” streamers, and when I do (when it’s an announcement for something I’m interested in, for example) I tend to close the chat immediately because it’s absolutely useless when ten thousand people are all spamming emotes rather than attempting to have any sort of conversation.

    Small streamers, though, are great. As a chatter I find the “delay” between my message and the streamer “seeing” it online a little frustrating, but it’s something you get used to and not something you can do a whole lot about with the way things are set up. The fact that, in these situations, it is possible to engage with people directly makes it much more interesting and appealing.

    I don’t stream myself — largely because most of the people who might want to watch me are in other time zones rather than a lack of any desire to — but it’s a similar situation with YouTube, and even my site, the latter of which is what I spend most of my time and attention on. It’s really nice to have a regular crowd of people who show up in the comments and are polite and articulate, and while it’d be lovely to make a living doing what I love, it’d also be a real pain having to deal with so many more comments and having to deal with the inevitable detritus.

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