Live From The Puppet Mines?

8 Sep

So, live streams. 

Just shy of a year ago I started doing some puppet building live streams on Twitch pretty regularly. While I’ve streamed various things before, this was definitely the most viewership I ever had, sometimes with ten viewers or more. This doesn’t sound like much but for a small streamer, it’s not bad. 

I have one major rule with all my online content generation: it has to be fun. No burnout. No feeding the algorithm. This of course limits my viewer base quite severely, but I’d rather have a handful of regular viewers and enjoy doing the streams, instead of a larger audience but burning out and living in fear that taking a day off will kill my numbers.

At this low level of course there is zero revenue from streaming, so it *must* be kept as a fun thing. I see it as a way to keep in touch, help people just coming into the field, and introducing puppet building to people who never even thought about it before. Indirectly folks may find their way to the Etsy shop by discovering my video/streaming content, but that’s just a byproduct. 

Over the past couple of months growth on the Twitch channel has stalled, and while open-ended growth isn’t necessarily the goal, it still didn’t feel right. I started thinking about what, if anything, I could do. It struck me that I already had twice the number of followers on the YouTube channel as Twitch. Was I splitting my audience for no reason? What if I multi-streamed? Is there even a live stream audience on YouTube?

A couple of weeks ago I tried a multi stream and much to my surprise the Twitch and YouTube numbers were about even. The downside is I really didn’t like splitting chat like that, I felt like I was spinning too many plates. Unsure what to do, I decided to take some time to think about how I was going to proceed. 

Then the hate raid issue on Twitch blew up. At the time of this writing, it’s still a major issue and Twitch has yet to give any substantive response. It’s beyond horrible, and certainly makes me feel gross to be broadcasting on that platform. Of course YouTube is far from innocent in allowing toxic Internet culture to thrive, but at the moment it’s not quite the sewer that Twitch has become. 

So this is a long-winded way of saying that yes, the build streams will be back but I’ll be broadcasting solely on the YouTube channel, at least for the time being. I already have a core viewer base on YouTube and this is a good way to keep the channel alive between Oracle episodes. 

As for when this will happen, I’m aiming to start up again the first week of October. I’m taking the week of my birthday off this month and it would be silly to start again now just to take a break in a couple of weeks, so October makes sense. Plus I’ll be coming back for the Halloween season, which is always fun. 

As always, stay tuned to my social media for updates. 

Kev