The latter half of 2022 continues to be a tenacious time for Twitch. In the past few days, the social media site went from controversy after controversy from some of its most prominent streamers. Now, Twitch faces critiques from its audience due to recent issues with the update for revenue splits with streamers. Earlier today, Twitch President Dan Clancy addressed Twitch streamers through an open letter detailing the company’s reasoning for the revenue split changes.
According to Clancy, Twitch has begun to standardize its qualifications for revenue splits for its streamers since the previous system proved to be less than consistent. It had the unfortunate effect of benefiting streamers with a larger audience. So starting on June 1, 2023, streamer revenue of 100k and above will be split 50/50. Streamers currently on premium deals with Twitch will retain a 70/30 revenue split for their first 100k earned but will regress into 50/50 afterward.
This change wouldn’t affect streamers making anything below 100k. For those who are affected, Clancy stated that the bump in ads revenue share from Ads Incentive Program “…is a great way for these larger streamers to make up most, if not all, of that revenue.” For those that are interested in additional detail, we have provided a copy of the email that we have sent to some of these streamers explaining the change and how it affects them below. Switching to a 50/50 split was a necessary move according to Clancy, largely due to the cost of high definition and low latency in Twitch’s live videos. According to the Amazon Web Services’ Interactive Video Service (IVS), live video for a 100 concurrent user streamer (CCU) streaming 200 hours a month costs more than $1000 per month.
Despite the update only hitting the top streamers on the site, many see the switch to a 50/50 revenue split as a huge step backward. YouTubers and Twitch streamers alike have pointed to sites like YouTube, where they have maintained a steady 70/30 revenue split for all of its content creators. Popular Youtuber and Twitch streamer penguinz0 bluntly called out Twitch’s suggestion to make up the 20% revenue loss with Add-revenue. Unlike ads on sites like YouTube, where viewers have the option to skip them, Twitches ads can potentially last up to 8 minutes back to back. Penguinz0 claimed that the terms of this update will force streamers to put more ads into their streams to make up for the loss, ruining the viewer experience.
With a site like YouTube cleaning up its issues with streaming, Twitch is running a risk of driving away its most lucrative content creators. Regardless, Twitch has the time to contemplate the swarm of responses to its latest decision before it officially implements its proposed changes.