While I can’t claim to have ever had an issue with chat while streaming on Twitch (the simple truth of a scrub streamer), I have seen instances where chat goes absolutely berserk in the blink of an eye. And sometimes, it just ain’t all that pretty.
To help resolve some of that chaos, Twitch introduced Followers-Only Mode for chat.
Followers-Only Mode restricts chat to only include viewers who have followed you for a specific amount of time. For example if you set Followers-Only to ten minutes, in order to chat a viewer must have been following for ten minutes. Simple no?
At first glance, I looked at this as a good thing. You can eliminate the odd troll that swings through looking to grief you out of existence, while at the same time ensuring your regular viewers have a safe space to shoot the proverbial in while you pwn the noobs. In fact, Twitch even discovered in a small sample of research that,
- Moderator actions sharply decreased with less toxic chat.
- Follows went up.
- No measurable change in viewership.
Sounds awesome, right?
Yet as I considered this some more, for a scrub streamer like me with lower follower count it would occur to me that it might work the opposite route - someone genuinely swings by, wants to engage and look at that, can’t because they have to follow me first. Peace be with me and they’re gone.
I get what Twitch is looking to do here & applaud their efforts to test the chat waters, I just wonder if it actually accomplishes what it’s supposed to beyond the streaming pros.