Stream Etiquette - The Cringe (and how to avoid it)

Posted by Summer (slowburnstudio) on

Photo by Daniel Páscoa on UnsplashAlright. You ready? Because you're about to hear awesomely bad things I've actually encountered in chat. There are a lot of what seem like straight-forward, common sense things you do and don't say while in someone's chat. But, as my dad says, common sense ain't so common. Like these examples. 


Hey! How are you? You look tired.

It's every streamer's dream to be told this. Please tell me how tired I look as I try to entertain you for another 4 hours. I only put on at least 3 lbs of concealer under my eyes before stream and it's great to know that's working. Also, now I'm on the defensive and think I look haggard and shitty. Awesome. Way to put me in a good mood. I'm CERTAINLY not going to time you out for petty bs now. That's DEFINITELY not going to happen. Kappa. Fuck off.

PLEASE ALSO DO NOT TELL ME I NEED TO EAT, FEED MY CAT, OR WORK OUT MORE. I'm aware my cat meows a lot. He's fucking old as fuck, okay? And very vocal. He eats all the time. Also I know I need to work out more. My tummy is soft as fuck. 100% would be nice to nap on. Not so nice for washing your delicates on like a washboard. Yet. 

But you haven't eaten and it's been 5 hours. Maybe eat?

If you want to tell me to eat, though, get me some o that treat stream, bb. Or donate food money. Seriously. I'll take cash for takeout or groceries. I've always wanted to shop at Whole Paycheck Foods.

What else do you do besides stream?

I'm a hot dog vendor (I can't take credit for this one, it's all Sequisha).

This is especially fun when I've been streaming for 8 hours already. I am a full-time streamer. What else do I do? Earlier I took a shit. Later I'm gonna sleep. I might masturbate thinking about someone other than you. Any more questions?

I am so glad you're not a titty streamer like those other thots on Twitch.

LOOK. This isn't a compliment. If I had bigger tits they would be on hella display. Pushed up. Front and center. With glitter on them. Maybe some neon lights pointing to their glorious globe-ness. I love tits. I wish my tits were naturally bigger. If you are afraid of women and their natural attributes, which is what I gather when someone demeans women based on their appearance and/or how they dress, I would suggest you not hang here. I get a little savage. BadBunny might have a few words for you, though. Go in her stream and tell her how glad you are she isn't a titty streamer. Kappa. (Don't do that she'll rip your head off and feed it to you for breakfast. Also she's amazing.)

I'm gonna go visit another streamer. Talk to you later!

HOW CAN I GET YOU TO STAY should I take off my shirt?! Please, anything, don't go! ANOTHER STREAMER!!! HOW COULD YOU!!! *wails and sobs incoherently into her hands*

I don't care. Don't announce that shit, it's rude. Just say you gotta go. Bringing up other streamers ESPECIALLY WHO ARE CURRENTLY STREAMING AT THE SAME TIME isn't really the thing to do. 

I just hosted you!

Yes. I do indeed see my alerts where you hosted me for zero viewers. Very helpful.

If you want to host me, great. I always appreciate viewers doing anything they can, no matter how small, to help the stream. Calling attention to it when it's literally zero or one viewers is the activity of an attention whore and you're obviously looking for something. Go away, you fucking pigeon. I have no breadcrumbs for you.

It's been nice hanging! Gonna go start streaming myself now, byeeee

Whoa. You're a streamer too? LET ME STOP MY FUCKING STREAM! Everyone, I was gonna stream for longer, but dildo in chat is a streamer too and felt the need to announce it, so let's stop this successful, relaxing stream and let me host some newb who thinks it's ok to self-advertise in other people's chats and probably is really good at community engagement. Like, really good. Probably not cringey at all. Probably also really practiced and relaxed on stream. Let's go!

*I know as a new streamer you are desperate to network and find ways to promote your own stream. I'll address this in another blog post, but please don't make yourself look bad by bringing it up over and over unrequested in other people's chats. This is called self-promotion and is not allowed most places. *

I am going to point out here that you should also not self-promote by tagging other people/streamers on instagram or twitter or any social media when you're going live. Don't. Please.

That torso looks too short/the legs are wrong/you missed a first aid kit/the princess is in another castle.

You wanna backseat? Go ride with your mom to the grocery store and get the fuck outta my stream. I know how to draw. Gamers know how to game. We literally do it FOR A LIVING. I don't ask for critique in my streams, and UNLESS SPECIFICALLY ASKED FOR, BACKSEATING IS BAD. Unless, you know, you want to be banned or ridiculed or called out for your name. BigPimpDaddyBootySmacker. I see you. You're such a GOD. Kappa.

Sooo do you have a boyfriend? Kid? Freckle on your right nipple named Stan?

Well now that you mention it, that freckle's name is...WAIT WHAT. Personal info is just that. If I make it public that I have a freckle, sure. Let's discuss it. Otherwise, my freckle and his boyfriend and my cat's lover are none of your business. Also WHY DOES IT MATTER. It is absolutely irrelevant to the stream or the entertainment I provide. Also, I'm not fucking you. Ever. So my boyfriend status? NEVER YOU. How's that. 

So you're a lesbian?

I am a person who's sexual preferences, unless I choose to discuss them, are none of your business. I have a vibrator. It doesn't have a sex. Pretty sure it's getting more than you are, though. Is that enough info for you? Still not fucking you.

I'm just gonna reiterate here that a streamer's personal life is absolutely none of your business unless they volunteer that information and choose to discuss it openly. 

FRIEND REQUEST SENT

I don't respond to friend requests on twitch. Sorry. Personal policy. Also my whispers are closed. Also you're not my friend, you asked to see my feet and were banned. GTFO.

WHISPERS ME HOW NICE MY ASS/TITS/EYES ARE

Yes, I know. I have a mirror. Also my whispers are closed. Not fucking you. Still. Also you just got banned. 

I'm a mod in like, three other chats, so if you need someone...

Thank GOD you asked! I was waiting for you to say something! Here's a green sword, a handbook, would you like a cup of coffee? A foot rub? I'm so in your debt.

Becoming a mod is NOT something you ask for. Do not do this! Mods are selected by streamers on a variety of criteria. Some reasons to mod people:

  • Actual Mod. Was super helpful in chat for like a month and not overbearing. Didn't ask. Is awesome chill person who doesn't stress the streamer out.
  • Actual Mod. Replied to inquiry on discord/twitter/wherever about people interested in modding and filled out a form. Is awesome chill person who doesn't stress the streamer out.
  • Another streamer who was made into a Trophy Mod. I have one of these left - I unmodded most of them because it was kinda weird. Whatever.
  • Big Spender. Sometimes modding a generous patron of a stream is done so that they are not accidentally timed out. If they are timed out, their bit status is knocked off the leaderboard. So if they donated 5k in bits that week, then were timed out, their name would disappear. A lot of streamers still mod big bit donators to prevent this. Don't wanna punish someone for something petty or have them be caught by accident. (Sometimes these people are naturally amazing mods, so win/win)
  • Asked for it in chat. 

Yo, you should shout out [insert sure-to-be-embarrassed streamer name here] he/she/it is great!

Oh shit! You're right! This isn't my stream or anything. I guess I'll bow down to your wishes and shout out every other streamer that blesses me with their presence, ever! Not like I have a stream of my own to run, content to relay, anything like that. This is a shout-out stream! Let's GO! 

I've actually had this happen in my chat. The person who asked for a shout-out for another streamer was timed out and got very VERY offended. Here's the thing: no one should feel like they have to shout ANYONE out. I shout out close friends and people who host/raid, and that's about it. I don't want to feel like I have to shout out every other broadcaster on the platform, I'd be at it all day. My stream is not a running advertisement for other people. It is my business, my livelihood. I don't even know some of the streamers with checkmarks that come through. 

Small streamers are more likely to do shout-outs, and I was a shout-out queen for AGES. Not anymore. Partners can come and relax, and not feel like wearing their checkmark is a request for attention. It's just a badge. Shoutouts are little compliments. They help other streamers sometimes. Sometimes not. And they are NEVER required. Don't get offended, don't ask for them, and CERTAINLY don't dm my mods asking for them. That's so desperate and cringey. If you get one, KUDOS. But it's really NBD. 

Also don't tell me to check out other streamers in chat in general. I have a discord channel for that shit. 

WOW that is a lot of gift subs/a huge donation/a lot of bits! You must be ballin' to give that much!

Are you sure this is the right stream for you? You look poor. 

This makes me very uncomfortable. It's like calling out someone who has a Lexus as "Mr. Moneybags" when you're rolling in on your bird-shit-covered, 10yr old Honda with peeling tinted windows and a DMB sticker on the back. Yeah. They are spending money on something you obviously are not. Their money choices are their own though, and none of your concern. Supporting a streamer is GOOD. I wouldn't be able to do this if there weren't generous people out there who saw my stream as a worthy place to drop a little cash now and then, who saw my content as entertaining enough to help keep on the air. These are the supporters who are making your experience possible. 

Don't discuss/bring up someone else's financial situation, even if it's better than yours. It's not a compliment. You wouldn't do that in public, I hope. Don't do it in chat. Show love for donations and bits and sub trains and high tier subs with emotes and happiness. Be happy for your streamer! He/she relies on this generosity. If you make it uncomfortable, you won't be as welcome and you may make the giver feel weird. Also I like DMB. They just released a new album. What's it been, 10 years?

Can someone gift me a sub, please? I am poor.

OMG SOMEONE QUICK! This person should be a part of my community! They are POOR! And they want EMOTES! Please show mercy, big gifters, and make this person a more permanent fixture here. 

Well, you certainly have poor taste, so let's start there, ya fuckin' beggar. Gifted subs are just that - a gift. Begging for them, DM'ing big gifters for them - these are bad ideas. Better to stick around, enjoy the stream, maybe drop some compliments and join the discord - regular contributors to chat and discord are more likely to get gift subbed on sub trains. Just sayin'. 

Where do you live? Exactly? The neighborhood though? Wasn't your first cat's name Rex? I think I know you. Where did you get that burger from that you said is 5 mins from your house?

First off, creeper, if you're going to stalk me, there're rules. I require you to leave me hot food on the doorstep NIGHTLY to reserve your bush outside my window, and I swear to God if you disrupt my neighbors I'm calling the cops. And keeping the food.

I know we're talking and friendly and it feels comfortable to talk normally here like you would your friends. And you want one of these burgers. But don't dox me in chat. Don't ask me to dox myself. There are a lot of cool people on the internet. And a lot of not cool people who would possibly actually stalk me/hurt me/scare me. Guess who I'm trying to keep my actual location from. Go ahead. Guess. If you don't know: Doxing 

You guys play Overwatch? My character is level extra bitchin' and I have a new skin on her and a gun that goes bang wanna play and also who here plays Overwatch?

I'm sorry, did I interrupt your conversation with my stream? Everyone, let's go play Overwatch with this bitchin' dude! Definitely on topic in this stream where we are playing a totally different game/doing art/doing basically anything but playing Overwatch. 

Pay attention to the actual conversation or expect to be ignored. Pulling attention to yourself in someone else's stream is kinda shitty unless you're a part of the ongoing conversation. Maybe go to an Overwatch stream? I hear those exist.

SAYS SOMETHING COMPLETELY AGAINST CHAT RULES, SUCH AS AGE 

Wow, those purges happen fast, huh? LUL 

Chat rules pop up when you enter any stream and start typing in the chat window, except on mobile. Read them. If you're mobile, assume typical rules apply and don't be an ass and apologize if purged. Easy peasy.

UGH I had a terrible day everything died and I lost my job

I know the urge to vent to chat can be overwhelming. After all, I AM YOUR SOLE SOURCE OF SUPPORT AND YOUR EVERYTHING. Your shrine to me is amazing, I should know. You sent me 4 pictures yesterday via whisper links which I definitely received and opened, because I check my whispers and like opening spoopy links - one might be a dick pic and wouldn't that just be THE BEST. Also I like how you fished some of my hair off of my shirt at Twitchcon and made a little doll with it. 

Really though - I know your day is bad, but ending that comment with - "I'm so glad I can be here so I can finally relax," is actually really appropriate. Let's not dwell. Let's not bring the cast down. Let's find a good spot for you to let go of the reality of life which is sometimes shit. Even for me. I'm here to relax too. slowLove

Also, discussing this in discord is def. more appropriate. Some casters are cool with discussing life situations in chat, but feel out the chat first, and if someone asks you to change the subject, don't complain. Just understand we're trying to maintain a different mood or chat momentum or whatever. If you think it'll bring everyone else down, maybe don't discuss it in a live chat.

UGH I want to kill myself. Life just sucks without Overwatch.

WOW where do I start. Joking about suicide is never funny. Especially in a chat. It can bring things to a grinding halt, and I've instructed my mods to purge suicide comments and whisper the chatter with suicide prevention hotline info. This is not an appropriate chat topic and can trigger others. If you feel these things, public chats for gaming and art are not generally the best place for support. Reach out to your friends and loved ones, a therapist or doctor. A hotline. You're hurting. You need help. Suicide is never the answer. 

Text CONNECT to 741741 from anywhere in the USA, anytime, about any type of crisis.
Call 1-800-273-8255

Ok sorry to end so serious, but honestly I've seen that one and it is such a hard thing as a streamer because I'm over here trying to be funny and drawing celebrities and roses and making soft whispers and dancing to EDM - I'm not a counselor, I'm not good with that stuff, I get scared someone is serious. So don't do that in chat, and know how to handle it as a streamer.

Love you guys. Have an awesome week.

Tell me what you think! Plz comment below, share, etc.
I'm streaming later tonight if ya wanna come by and shame me for self-promotion in your tweet timeline because your friend liked my blog post and now it's showing up and you don't even know who I am why the fuck is this showing up on your timeline? Fucking social media.  

 

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