- Twitch unveils a new “Boost” feature to help viewers popularize their favorite streamers' channel
- Twitch staff explains how the feature will work
- The community receives it with very mixed feelings
Twitch is adding a new feature that will let viewers advertise their favorite streamer by paying money. Content creators are not happy.
The Twitch Community Does Now Seem Happy
It is nothing new that the streaming platform is adding new features constantly to continue its growth. The last few months have seen the introduction of new methods to moderate chat in order to combat hate speech and the introduction of new ways for content creators to monetize their streams. These have had a mixed reception amongst both streamers and viewers and it seems the latest change to Twitch is going to be received the same way.
Last year Twitch introduced a “boost this channel” option. However, a recently leaked add-on to this feature lets viewers use their debit cards to boost the channel directly, instead of using channel points. Streamers are not happy, calling the feature “pay to win”.
Harris Heller, the creator of Streambeats, tweeted that when twitch dev asked him for his opinion on the feature, he said this was a bad idea a year ago.
He reasons that streamers with more viewers will simply get boosted much more than smaller content creators, towards whom the boost feature is arguably targeted. Other Twitter users have pointed out that the new changes are just going to help the rich get richer.
How Does This Feature Work?
With the new feature implemented, viewers will be able to buy a set number of “Boosts”, with each one highlighting the streamer’s channel and placing it to the front-page recommendations for another Twitch user. The Boost feature will allegedly offer 3000 recommendations for less than three dollars, but it is unknown how many total boosts will it take to recommend the creator on some other viewer’s front page.
In the latest Twitch patch notes, stream product manager Jacob Rosok had many things to say. He explained that the feature will first be rolled out to a select number of Twitch streamers. “What we’re doing with Boosts is giving viewers the ability to buy super high visibility promotions for their favorite creators, and these types of placements come with a cost,” Rosok said.
He added that the team heard directly from creators that it is difficult to get their channels out there, and he hopes that these viewers will be able to help their favorite streamers to grow their community more directly.
The chat’s responses during the stream were mostly negative, with some saying this is a “pay to win” feature, however, only time will tell if the new changes will be positive or negative.