Sub-only streams on Twitch may be in violation of many popular games’ TOS

TL;DR - First brought to everyone’s attention on Reddit, it turns out that restricting access to content to those that pay is in direct violation of the TOS of many of the most popular games on the market today.  Game publishers like Riot Games, Blizzard, Valve, and CD Projekt Red all have clauses in their TOS that expressly forbid making content around their games and putting it behind a paywall. There are provisions in several of these companies’ terms for “partner programs”, but the language there is vague and, likely, outdated.  As of writing this, we’re unaware of any comments by any of these companies or by Twitch in regards to this development.

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New streaming platform GameWithMe aims to be 100% censorship-free

TL;DR - GameWithMe, founded by Steve Hamilton, is being promoted as “the world’s first video gaming platform that is free of censorship”.  The company is boasting the best payouts available for streamers looking to earn an income off of their content. They’ve filed a patent application for proprietary technology that allows multiple streamers to stream concurrently in the same session.  The site is currently live, but when we checked it out there weren’t any active streamers yet.

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HUYA scores exclusive streaming rights for STILL8’s Team Griffin

TL;DR - Playing off its recent deal with Team Liquid, Chinese streaming platform HUYA has landed streaming rights for the Korean esports org Team Griffin.  Beginning July 8, Team Griffin will begin streaming exclusively on HUYA as it competes in the Korean LoL Championship circuit, the LCK. STILL8, the team’s owner, had previously signed similar streaming deals with HUYA competitor Douyu for its Gen.G Esports, SK Telecom T1, KT Rolster, DAMWON Gaming, and Jen Air Green Wings assets.  Team Griffin also competes in Overwatch, Fortnite, and PUBG.

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Teamfight Tactics coming to Twitch Rivals with $125k competition

TL;DR - Teamfight Tactics, the hugely popular new game mode for Riot Games’ League of Legends, has secured a seat at the Twitch Rivals table.  To kick off the launch of a ranked mode for the game, Riot and Twitch have joined forces on the game’s first ever official tournament. The Twitch Rivals tournament runs July 17 - 18 and features 64 streamers, separated into two 32-person groups, competing for a slice of the $125k prize pool.  Full details are still pending, including the list of participants.

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In case you missed it…

It’s always fascinating seeing people first exploring Twitch and discovering the nuances of the live streaming community.  In a way, it’s very similar to art. There are preconceived notions and expectations unique to everyone and you never know what direction someone is going to take once they dive in.  Will they lean towards competitive esports, single out a specific game or streamer, or gravitate towards IRL or cooking streams. There’s no way to know but the one constant I’ve found over the years is that tastes change, and most people are open to expanding their horizons given the time and the opportunity to do so.

I discovered Twitch because of League of Legends.  I was so caught up with climbing the competitive ladder that I spent every minute I wasn’t playing scouring the internet for guides, builds, and gameplay video from pro players.  Through that process I stumbled on a site that had a sidebar listing currently live “streams” of pro players. I actually remember pausing for a moment and processing that concept in my brain for a solid 4-5 seconds.  It was a life-changing moment for me, and ultimately a major inspiration for building StreamKick.

Fast forward to today and I don’t watch much LoL anymore.  It’s not that I don’t enjoy it. I’ll hit up the occasional LCS match, and I’ve indulged in some Teamfight Tactics recently.  But now I’m caught up in survival games like Rust, and battle royale games like Apex Legends. I also have a personal catalog of streamers I’ll always return to because they just make great content, regardless of what game they’re playing.  But it all started somewhere. That first streamer I watched was Dyrus by the way.  Go check him out.  He’s not for everyone, but he might be for you.

This week I came across a very interesting article by Julia Dixon Evans I highly recommend checking out.  Julia was new to Twitch and took to exploring her local Twitch community in San Diego for the article she as writing.  It’s a unique opportunity to experience a first-hand perspective on how someone like Julia gets acquainted with Twitch, and to see how her initial impressions of the platform evolve as she goes deeper.

We’ve shared many times how important local communities can be to the Twitch ecosystem.  I’ve personally witnessed people become more deeply involved once they’ve connected with their local Twitch meet-ups.  Learning that it was also part of Julia’s experience reinforced to me the value of those events and the connections people can make, both on and offline.

Stories like Julia’s are an important aspect of the streaming community that is often overlooked.  Those stories of discovery are rarely shared through mainstream channels but they provide us with valuable insight into the community at large.  Understanding how people are introduced to live-streaming and how their preferences evolve can tell us a great deal about the sorts of content that resonates with audiences.  And by “content” I don’t just mean games. I’m referring to engagement, community, and the degree to which streamers allow their audiences access to their lives.

If you have a discovery story you’d like to share we’d love to hear it.  Meanwhile we’ll continue to seek out stories like Julia’s and post them up here.  We hope Julia sticks around. There’s a lot to offer and explore on Twitch, Mixer, YouTube, Caffeine, and platforms yet to come.