The ways people make money nowadays never ceases to amaze me. We no longer live in the age of a 9-5 but in a time where people make their nut from multiple side hustles or weird, niche gigs they’ve carved out for themselves. While some are respectable endeavors, there are others I take issue with. At the top of this list is a profession that has really taken off as of late. I am talking about being a “streamer.”
For those of you not familiar with this industry, let me explain. You record yourself live, on the internet, doing a variety of different things. Consumers will then pay you in donations or on a monthly basis as a “subscriber” to your specific channel. This industry is predominantly for those playing video games. That’s right, anyone can make money from playing video games. All. Day. Long.
Now let me be clear, I’ve dabbled in watching a few Twitch channels in the past back in a dark time of my life when I was completely and utterly obsessed with a game called Destiny. I eventually grew out of that phase and haven’t touched an Xbox in a few months. With Amazon’s acquisition of one of the biggest streaming platforms worldwide (Twitch) and the release of several huge games the likes of Fortnite and Overwatch, streaming has become a full-time gig for some people. There are some nerds out there pulling 6 or 7 figures off it. And you know what? I, for one, hate that.
That’s right. I am jealous. I am jealous that these assholes can sit around all day and make bank for playing a video game. There’s been some form of e-sports for a while so it isn’t exactly news that you can make a living off of video games The thing is, back then you had to be a proven professional in order to make any money. You had to be good enough at a game that you could win legitimate competitions and get sponsors from legitimate companies. Now that streaming is readily available to everyone, any joe schmoe or jane schmoe can make a channel and film themselves providing mediocre gameplay or subpar entertainment to the entire internet.
The whole concept to me is outlandish because why on earth would anyone PAY these people for something they were already doing for free? People are going to play video games regardless. It’s a hobby. You don’t need to pay them for it. It’s wild that there are people out there, right now, with enough spare cash to just throw in a virtual donation box to some stranger playing a video game. If you’ve got disposable income, there MUST be a better way to spend it than this. Then again, we live in a strange world where everyone is just dying for attention and living off of “likes”, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that there are people willing to throw away money in hopes that some weirdo says their name on the stream.
What’s funny is that even streamers don’t like streamers. Every other day I come across a tweet on my timeline from some sad sap streaming personality bitching about another sad sap streaming personality. Look at this.
Here we have someone named “xotigbitties” complaining about another female streamer and the content (or lack thereof) that said streamer is providing to the creepy old men who follow her. I’m sorry, but your handle is literally a play on words of “big titties” and you mean to tell me you are not playing your cards the exact same way and targeting the exact same audience? K. This is the internet and the fact is, sex sells. Attractive people will forever find a way to make a living from sad, lonely, people on the internet and Twitch is no different.
The saddest part about this whole deal is that if streaming is someone’s choice of profession (and I use that term extremely loosely), they better hope this fad lasts a while. I’m sure they can sit in a chair and play video games well into their 70’s because it’s not exactly a physically demanding activity. However, I’m having a hard time imagining a scenario in which someone is qualified for any job worth a damn after spending several years playing video games. Call me old fashioned, but this shit needs to die. Games are exactly that, games, yet streaming has turned everyone and their cousins into a “content creator” well deserving of your financial support. I’m sorry, but last time I checked, Super Mario did not qualify as a charity case. Down with Twitch. Bring back 4-player Goldeneye and Halo LAN parties.