When we look behind and remember the beginning of video games live streaming, it’s hard to do not remember the first fights configuring Livestream (which, by the way has become part of Vimeo recently) and do not think on how hard it was to get a ‘good’ quality streaming with that internet connections which only a few could get.
Before, the objective was to stream in the best quality possible: in image terms, resolution, gameplay level, etc. We understood that, in order to get our viewership (being lucky that meant 20 people) we had to be the bests, because if not, why would they wanted to see us?
YouTube was focused on funny and basic gameplays, meanwhile Livestream started getting more “professional” content, understanding this as ingame level plays.
The viewership started growing accordingly to the higher interest on professional playing streamers… this become a hard puzzle for that time streamers: so many changes in a really low time space. It all started on Justin.tv and own3d.tv, XSplit was there (the beta was free!) later with OBS, Justin becoming Twitch and Azubu started competing with them… was really a big frenzy.
Video Game streaming was a success and this happened because it strongly connection to social networks -understanding that them got a really point of mainstream success between Millennials and younger people-. Social Networks offer the chance to meet, know and connect with people aligned in a different social aspects: just having a good feeling between because thinking similar or because we assume that person/entity as a reference.In the end, we’ve converted virtual socialization in something entertainer or what look to entertain (I can, for example, be scrolling in twitter for hours) and is on that point where Twitch shines.
Am going to use Twitch as a reference for this because is the one that I use normally, and where more personal experience I got but, basically, platforms like YouTube Gaming, Mixer or Caffeine (even facebook) are reasonable alternatives.
Twitch got into the next level the newborn dialogue from YouTube: standard people doing standard things which connects with the viewership and give the spectator the possibility to have a real conversation with streamer.
From the beginning was there the idea of this new fan-type phenomenon was tightly linked to the trust relationship in between the new influencers and the end users, and the point was the kind format used: speech straight to camera, in a fake 1v1 conversation module… more close and intimate. For the viewer, this YouTuber became more than just a reference, become somehow a friend.
So why Streaming over Video on Demand? Simple: in streaming there is a real and direct dialogue between the talker and the listener, the possibility to connect with the streamer from the audience which is making a real interaction over the content. Streaming makes the spectator a big proportion of the content that they consume. There are not only services of that exciting content we like (music videos, series, films) there are now other choices for a more close content where we can interact in real time not only with it even with the maker, a person where we can identify ourselves or create a new affective link and, to top, is in the same communication level as us, he read us and pay attention to us, the streamer considers the viewer as a part of the equation that success. Saying in other way, it make us to feel important to that streamer, is not anymore a freezing link between you and a plastic box, there is not a wall anymore: that’s streaming.
And then, Amazon bought Twitch. That was the moment when all the previsions got accomplished and got internationally accepted that streaming was a fact, that someone was happening and won’t stop growing.
So now, after all this prologue to give the context, we get into the quid. Elvis stills alive and is watching you.
No, seriously: streaming 2.0.
The reason that took me to engage this down the name of Streaming 2.0 is because we cannot compare the first steps of streaming with today’s one, and the main reason for this is marketing, specifically 2.0 marketing and well… that’s the name.
Streaming hass evolve mainly because growth of interaction and target user inclusion, the same way as marketing evolved when downgraded the communication level from brands to user standpoint in social networking. In the last years, appeared a lot of applications that give utility to streamings, like streamloots, which permit the interaction in real time with the channel during the streaming.
For example: before, when a follower clicked in follow the channel, you discovered it as streamer when the streaming finished and you went through the analysis. You were forced to remember that things and you were the tool that make interaction happened. Now, following a channel involves a funny gif in the streaming, your name in the screen, your almost instant mention from the streamer. Same happens with subscription (before just didn’t exist). Now you can subscribe to the streamer channel, letting him good benefits and getting for yourself a lot of ones in Twitch’s platform, like icons and medals.
All this additions made a new interactive way of streaming, giving the chance to appear and be part of it as a viewer and not only in the chat channel were we used to communicate with in real time (something called social media? ehem), we can now be part of all the content. We have now a real feel of supporting the influencer, that our help is really making a difference on the person that is entertaining us.
Is not viable anymore to growth without making a community surrounding you: before personal websites and social media channels in parallel to the streaming, today the community is part itself of the content. Its present, makes in someway that the streaming is part of you as a viewer, the success is your success, os at least, part of that success belongs to your help.
Emotions won the fight against content, interaction got important than quality, dialogue determines the success thanks to the contribution of the viewers. Streaming is not anymore a content flux from an entertainer to the entertained, it’s not cold and feels far away, now it’s warm and close, more intimate.
Streaming 2.0 feels like the beginning for something even bigger than people thinks, communication turned away a lot in the last decade and is not anymore responsibility for the speakers to let the message be clear and fresh to become expansive: now is in receptor’s shoulder because now, viewership has more power than ever and, as Uncle Ben said: “a big power means a big responsibility”.