Twitch chat now comes with “Cheering” microtransactions

Yesterday, The Twitch.tv blog revealed a new feature to their popular streaming website called “Cheering”. Through “Cheering”, viewers will be able to donate animated “Bits” emoticons to their favorite partner streamers.

Essentially, “Bits” are special Twitch currencies purchased through Amazon Payments (i.e. real money is used to buy Bits) from a button on Twitch Chat, like this:

the The bits visually differ depending on the amount given to the streamer – the starting 1 Bit is a dull gray, and they gradually become more interesting until the 10,000 more extravagant red bits.

This is what the “Bits” will look like in different amounts:

Once the Bits have been purchased, viewers can type “cheer” followed by the amount they decide to donate (for example, “cheer100” will give the streamer 100 bits and have the 100-bit emote).

This is what 100 bits will look like in the chat:

“Cheers” viewers will also receive special badges next to their names in the chat, also depending on the amount of bits:

Quickly and without warning, the new “Cheering” blog post received a very negative Response from Twitch viewers, with ActionJacksonHD’s second most voted comment criticizing the system for only supporting partner streamers:

Another feature that only benefits partners … Who cares about non-partner streamers who pay $ 1000 into large gaming platforms but are forced to stream at low grades due to not having transcoding. Why watch little streamers when you can watch a trans-coded partnership streamer whose chat is now overflowing with cash? …

Other commentators have questioned the logic of having “bits” when many streamers already have their own ways of receiving money from viewers through Twitch subscriptions and donation widgets.

As Topher Doll notes:

Why would I do this instead of donating or subscribing which gives a better [percentage] of my donation to the streamer?

Finally, the most repeated negative response compared the Cheering system to the adult streaming site Chaturbate, where viewers reward broadcasters who perform sex acts with “tokens” via chat. Considering Twitch’s strong nudity policy, (including ban on games and diffusers for the exhibition) it seems counterproductive to the ideals of Twitch.

Bob Jone’s comment is one of many:

No, please go back. This is the kind of thing that adult cam sites use. You already have policies against this stuff, you’re just going to encourage it. It comes from someone who is * against * these policies discouraging “lewd” clothing or games because God forbid, we can’t deal with sexuality.

And his final line echoes the thoughts of many in the comments:

Please rethink that. It’s not a good idea.

You can see the full reveal video below:

So what do you think of “Cheering”? Do you think this is a good idea? Please leave a comment below!


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