Twitch Etiquette: A Brief Guide for New Streamers

With all recent updates on Twitch (custom cheermotes, Twitch crates, 1080p streaming quality), there is more competition, and, therefore, more dirty tactics in pursuit of success. Etiquette rules are often neglected that makes Twitch one of the most agressive and trolling communites. Below, we provide you with a list of Twitch etiquette rules that you should keep in mind while streaming:

Twitch Chat Etiquette

One can think that depending on what side you are now (a broadcaster or a viewer), the rules of etiquette may vary. We have gathered general rules that can be applied to both streamers and viewers. Here they are:
  • Backseating Is Not Helpful
Never give the player any tips of advice, unless he/she asks for it. Especially, if the streamer has pointed out that it is a first (or blind) run in his/her broadcast title. Be also careful with game spoilers in the chat. For sure, you love games that they are playing, but don’t ruin the playing experience for people.
  • Respect the Streamer and Chat Participants
Always check if a streamer has specific rules of conduct before interacting in his/her chat. If there are rules, they are published for a reason. Try to be respectful to other people in the chat. If you have lost temper and said something rude, just apologize and move on. If a streamer or his/her mod says something directly to you, it is better not to argue. It is not your stream: aggressive conduct can be disruptive. Avoid asking to be made a chat moderator, especially if you are a new viewer on this channel. Come regularly to watch the stream and get noticed, and the broadcaster might grant you with a moderator status.
  • Don’t Divert Attention from a Streamer
This means that you shouldn’t artificially attract attention of other chat participants to your personality. Don't ask for shouting out during the stream. If the streamer likes your channel, he/she will give you a shout voluntarily. Another thing that many beginning streamers do is spamming a broadcaster with multiple friend requests. It is rude and interrupts the stream. Complaints of different kind in somebody’s stream are absolutely inappropriate. Often, streamers complain that they have a similar viewer count, but, unlike this specific streamer, they are still not partnered. If you want to receive any constructive instructions, tips from a streamer, you’d better ask him/her in a message or a whisper.   
  • Respect Your Viewers and Their Time
As a broadcaster, provide a clear schedule of your broadcasts. If you can’t be on a schedule, find the way to let your audience know about cancellation. Even if you have almost no viewers on a stream, continue interacting with people that come watch your stream. If somebody passes by your stream, he/she will have only a few seconds to understand if they want to stay or not. In this case, interaction is a key for growing your stream community. If you are succeeded to become a partnered streamer, don’t forget to communicate with your full auidence. If you talk to your subscribers only, this will make other viewers feel unwanted.
  • Do Everything to Make Your Chat Community Friendly
As a broadcaster, you can positively influence the chat atmosphere and make people respect the etiquette rules. First of all, use chatbots, such as MooBot, AnkhBot, to moderate your chat, clear banned words and control using too much emotes or caps. Taking care of spammers and trolls makes your chat more comfortable and friendly. Having moderators is also a good idea. Read more useful tips on how to choose a Twitch chat moderator for your channel in our previous post. Have a panel on your Twitch page full of useful information and chat rules. Place there your schedule, social media links, tip jars or other ways to support your stream. Make this visible and clear, so that a viewer won’t spend time searching for needed info.
  • Avoid Gender and Social Prejudices
Don’t make general assumptions about your viewers: even if most of your audience are males, there is a chance that your stream is watched by female viewers as well. If the mistake occurs, apologize and move on. Viewers want to watch your stream and enjoy their time: if you are rude and unattentive, people will find another streamer to stay with.

Twitch Networking Etiquette

Networking is an important thing to do if you want to make your stream more visible as well as to find like-minded streamers. Following a proper Twitch etiquette will help you become friends with people you are looking for:
  • Advertise Your Stream Where It Is Appropriate
For example, game servers are perfect places where you can place your advertising. Don’t spam, just put a single advert to let people know about your stream. Do the same thing on the game forums, of course, if this is allowed by their own rules. If you are streaming League of Legends, then head over to its forums. The worst thing that could happen to you is ignorance, but at least you’ll try to capture attention of your potential audience without being rude and breaching an etiquette.
  • Avoid Aggressive Self-Advertising or Promotion of Your Friends’ Streams
Almost all big streams have rules that forbid self advertising and promotion of somebody’s streams in their chats. And it is absolutely logical. Imagine, you have worked a lot to become a successful streamer and have a stream you ever dreamt about, and suddenly a walking-by streamer named as “nkhguerh56784” appears in your chat and start asking to follow him/her in your chat. Such people will never get anything good of this approach. They just want to literally steal your hard work and have chosen the path of less effort.
  • May Your Kindness Return
If you don’t want to be one of those “nkhguerh56784”, think of networking as a tool to set friendships. Change a materialistic approach: other streamers on Twitch are just like you, they are not competitors or enemies. They are people who have been where you are and just have been streaming longer. They are your potential viewers and friends who will eventually return your attention and loyalty. We are all humans and are looking for positive and active viewers. The right way is to become such a viewer yourself. Think about how you would like people to act in your stream and do it in other people's streams instead. The concept is simple: give value - receive value. P.S. Remember to stay realistic. If you are a beginning streamer, choose streams of your size or smaller. This way networking will be beneficial for both sides. In case of prominent streamer, you have chances of being lost in the crowd. So, when it comes to big broadcasters you love, just enjoy their streams and don’t expect anything in return.
  • Network Effectively
Utilize Twitter, do retweets and favor tweets, try to be useful. Host other streamers at your channel. This lets the broadcaster believe that you trust him/her with your viewership. Hosting is a good way to become noticed by the streamer and community. Posting the link to the other streamer you are going to host in your chat is a nice gesture on your part. You can also type a host username in your chatboх and stay to hang out in other streamer’s broadcast for a while after your stream ends. All mentioned things are not obligatory, but very effective steps towards fruitful networking.

Takeaways

Viewers are a key part of any stream. Streamers, don’t forget about this, always remind your audience that you appreciate their time and attention. For those who are partnered and affiliated, the same rule applies: the grind never stops even if you’ve achieved what you dreamt about. Viewers, remember that being a streamer is not only fun and entertainment, and sometimes comparison and disrespect while a streamer is live on a stream can really hurt. Instead, try to be helpful and interactive while enjoying other streamers’ content.

10/22/2017