The Emerging Future and Significance Behind Internet Streaming Services

Jacey Mismash, Staff Writer

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For years on end, there has been a discussion around the death of cable television. This emerged as other streaming platforms such as Netflix and Hulu began to make their names known. Recently, the conversation has changed to focus on other streaming services, such as Twitch.tv, and the monumental pull they are having in terms of viewership.

        Twitch is a unique platform where users actually create the content being consumed; they are the ones behind the scenes creating materials for the viewers to watch. The site is mainly known for its large community of people who stream video games, but many people have ventured into using the platform to broadcast podcasts and digital and physical art. Some people even broadcast themselves going out in public.

         Recently, the platform received international attention when a popular streamer Tyler Blevins, who goes by the username “Ninja,” broke the stream record for the Twitch website with 628,000 concurrent viewers at the peak of his “Fortnite” stream. The stream gained attention by having popular rap artist Drake, playing alongside Blevins. Now, Twitch and other platforms offering broadcasting services are being taken a lot more seriously in terms of popularity.

According to an article from The Verge, Kate Jhaveri, Senior Vice President of Twitch’s Marketing, stated that, “Seeing a top gamer and musician come together on Twitch and unite their large and passionate communities is a cultural moment in terms of building awareness around the appeal of social video, and it is only going to grow from here.”

Jhaveri’s prediction is proving to be true. YouTuber Ruben Gundersen, who goes by the username “El Rubius,” gathered 100 other YouTubers within the Hispanic gaming community, reaching a peak of 1.1 million concurrent viewers.

While popularity amongst broadcasting services is undeniable, the monetary value is also increasing, with many companies finding value in these streamers.

In an interview with CNBC, Blevins explained that he can make more than $50,000 in a month through streaming services.

“I think that I offer a combination of high-tier game play that they really can’t get with a lot of other content creators… I’m very goofy; if you ever watched any of my streams or YouTube videos, I do impressions and stuff like that all the time and just crazy shenanigans.”

Blevins’ combination of skills alongside a bubbly and relatable personality is exactly why the popularity of sites like Twitch is growing exponentially.

These platforms let the viewer choose what to watch based off of who is streaming and what content is being streamed. Twitch also allows viewers to communicate with streamers through an open chat that the streamer and other viewers can see, which allows for more interaction with the content that people are watching.

As this new form of entertainment takes flight in the mainstream, the public reaction varies. Many people are open to this new experience, but many refuse to take it seriously because of its association with the gaming community. However, the money and popularity don’t lie. Maybe that association will not be such a bad thing anymore.

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