Twitch and female streamers

(19 Posts)
Interdasty Tue 28-Jul-15 12:33:48

Twitch is a live streaming site, mostly used by people streaming themselves playing video games. The streamers who become partners get paid by the site according to how much revenue they bring in but they also make money through personal donations from individual viewers.

Now to the issue : more and more girls are becoming very well paid streamers by wearing very revealing clothes and ott make up. They make a lot of money through donations made by men watching the stream. Many of them barely bother playing the game they are streaming or talking to the viewers or whatever else a ''proper'' streamer does, the site is simply a platform for them. They make a lot of money, many individual donations are in the hundreds and even thousands. Some even have a wish list from Amazon where you can buy them gifts. How do you feel about this?

almondcakes Tue 28-Jul-15 12:48:03

There's no such thing as proper streamer any more than there is such a thing as a proper youtuber.

PewDiePie is one of the best paid you tubers. How many people seriously believe he has something important to say about video games? People like watching him because he is young, hot, endearingly inane/stupid, cuddles tiny animals and has a famous girlfriend.

Such is the nature of popular culture.

Interdasty Tue 28-Jul-15 12:57:00

PDP doesn't use his sexual ''power'' to make money, especially since most of the audience are pre-teens. These young women are basically selling themselves as objects, a more watered down, pseudo version of ''cam modeling'', if you will. They aren't sticking anything up their ass at the request of a 55 yo sweaty fat man on another continent but they still sell themselves.

LurcioAgain Tue 28-Jul-15 13:01:06

Why does this bother you, Interdasty? It is, as almondcakes says, part of the nature of popular culture. And given that you've said on other threads that you are comfortable with porn, and that men use it because they are "more visual" (which I disagree with, incidentally), I'm not sure why you've started a thread on this in FWR. Unless of course, you're hoping to start some sort of bunfight. Which couldn't possibly be the case, could it?

almondcakes Tue 28-Jul-15 13:06:06

Of course he is using his sexuality, and a lot of the audience are teenage girls. Pretty much everyone in entertainment media is using their sexuality. That doesn't make pornification or objectification acceptable, or mean that all streamers/you tubers should make shirtless or cleavage revealing videos, but sexuality is part of what sells popular entertainment.

I think this whole debate has been adequately dealt with by feminists involved in streaming.

There is no such thing as a 'proper' youtuber, geek or streamer. And men should not be deeming some or all women against some standard of entry to geek activities, anymore than I can start debating whether men are 'fake geek boys' just because PewDiePie makes videos of himself shirtless wearing a tie, or licking a banana, or pouring liquid over his shirt.

Interdasty Tue 28-Jul-15 15:05:50

As much as I dislike people like PDP, what they sell is a combination of personality and looks. The girls I mentioned only sell looks, therefore objectifying themselves for money. They don't do anything else but sit there in Cirque du Soleil make up and ''ample cleavage''. Isn't that unfeministy? Selling yourself exclusively as an object? Something pleasant to look at or more iykwim?

ChunkyPickle Tue 28-Jul-15 15:12:18

Like who? I've listened to both the women and the men who stream video game/toy/whatever reviews, listened to by my 4 year old and my 37 year old - and TBH, the content of all of them is pretty inane - couldn't hear much difference between bloody StampyLongNose, TotalBiscuit, DisneyCollectorBR, or the woman with pink hair DP was listening to the other day..

All pretty inane, all selling some aspect of themselves...

it's not power to get people to click on you because you wear a tight t-shirt, as with anything, the power is in the hands of the people with the money, not the people getting it.

LurcioAgain Tue 28-Jul-15 15:17:18

Most feminists tend not to critique the choices of women doing the best they can to get on in a social set-up where from early childhood they are subjected to a constant barrage of propaganda that looks matter more than achievements. Feminists tend to be more interested in asking about the underlying social conditions which make putting yourself up for display a financially rewarding option, and asking about who it is doing the objectifying.

Your use of the phrase "sexual power" is interesting though - because for me this is almost always in direct opposition to real power. It's the sort of phrase people use about, say, a younger woman marrying a very rich, much older man ("Oooh, she trapped him using her sexual power...."). Or to demean both women and men simultaneously ("What women don't realise when they wear short skirts is the sexual power they exert over men..." - as if men are entirely dick-driven imbeciles - hint, I, and most of the feminists I know, do not think this about men). Or it's used to be plain nasty about women ("She only got that promotion by using her sexual power..."). In these cases either the woman has no real power at all, or it is used to slander a woman and put her in her place - she didn't get where she got because of genuine ability but because of sexual power. It stands in very sharp distinction to real political and economic power.

There was a great article in the Times about page 3, where the journo (apologies, have forgotten who he was) said he interviewed one of the page 3 girls who'd gone on to later make a successful career. Right at the end of the interview he said in a kind of throw-away manner what he later realised was actually the million dollar question: "If you could have got where you are today without taking your clothes off, would you?" He said she just fixed him with a look which said "are you completely stupid" and said "Of course I'd rather have got here without having to take my clothes off." That's what sexual power is - using sex because society denies you the option of doing anything else at all. It really is not real power.

InnocentWhenYouDream Tue 28-Jul-15 15:22:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

YonicScrewdriver Tue 28-Jul-15 15:38:43

I don't know what twitch is, but "sometimes some men use the internet to look at scantily clad women" isn't exactly news, is it?

Do you judge the men buying these amazon tokens or whatever, OP?

almondcakes Tue 28-Jul-15 15:49:42

I agree with Lurcio, but will add that these women are not just using looks. A lot about projecting a sexuality that makes money requires a carefully created personality. Most men are aware the personality is a performance, but maybe not you OP?

Dervel Wed 29-Jul-15 05:15:20

I have a feeling this may end up being a contentious post, which is not my intent, but nevertheless here goes:

They are both objectifying one another, to her the donator is little more than a walking atm, and yes of course to her fans she is seen as a sex object. Although, and this is crucial one does by no means excuse the other.

Any objectification of any person for any reason creates a net reduction of our collective humanity. There are a myriad of ways either gender can be objectified and not just sexually.

I just can't sign off on the idea that sexuality cannot be used to accrue status, power and wealth, because historically it quite blatantly has been. That said I believe there is wisdom in the analysis that points out the playing field is very much uneven. Like a man can run a company that exploits impoverished workers and make millions, (which is a form of objectification writ large) and no one questions how this wealth is generated, I mean literally rarely anyone will question it, they are accepted exonerated and idolised no matter what they have done as long as they are successful. A woman takes a few clothes off, and that is likely anyone will ever talk about. The disparity is quite frankly obscene.

Interdasty Wed 29-Jul-15 11:09:53

I am not against them doing it, I think it's a great way to make money and I admire their ''entrepreneurship''. As for the ''power'' they have, these girls make a lot more money than their average male viewer. I remember a guy on a video ranting about how she made more than he makes in a month from a single individual donation. A guy sending 10$ from his 1200$ paycheck to a woman who makes 100k+/year is not power. That's like saying someone who pays for a football ticket/SKY sub has more power than Ronaldo. They are loaded compared to their average viewer/donor. On top of the sexual bit.

And they are not doing ''the best they can''. These are young western women who could get a job like anyone else, especially in the world where they are more educated than men and outearn them in their 20' and 30's. They are doing it because they can and because they don't want to work a shitty job like the rest of us when they could make the same amount in a single day sitting in front of a webcam. They're not exactly 12yo bangladeshi orphans who will starve to death if they don't sell their bodies 15 times a day. Stop infantilizing women and their decisions.

Mide7 Wed 29-Jul-15 12:00:59

I know I'm missing the point but I can't help but think

"A fool and his money are easily parted"

ChunkyPickle Wed 29-Jul-15 13:06:46

So, is it that they play up to an image that upsets you Interdasty?

Because lots of people make lots of money doing video game reviews/playing video games on twitch - some are better than others, some spend more time on their image than others, most are men, some are women.

Again, do you have an example, because the ones DP watches are dressed much as the men do, but their t-shirt is a woman's fit (ie. tight), and they're wearing makeup and have done their hair. The content of their streams is much the same.

almondcakes Wed 29-Jul-15 14:08:01

The comparison shouldn't be between the viewer and the streamer though; it should be between the way successful male and female streamers are treated. Out of the top 100 streamers, only 8 are women, so I doubt that overall it is women who have the power here!

Most players with sponsorship are men as well.

LineRunner Wed 29-Jul-15 14:14:31

OP, is being 55 inherently creepy to you, or what?

almondcakes Wed 29-Jul-15 14:16:30

There's a good explanation from a female streamer here:

www.samanthablackmon.net/notyourmamasgamer/?p=7965

I think most women will recognise that dilemma in the workplace and in a variety of male dominated environments. You dress and act in a feminine way, and act submissively when men hit on you, and then get people complaining you are using your sexuality for advancement. Or you behave in an unfeminine way, and refuse to put up with sexual harassment, and get threatened and chased out of the environment for being a bitch/ugly feminist.

almondcakes Wed 29-Jul-15 14:44:33

Dervel, can you give me an example of a very popular female streamer who you think is objectified?

Because I have teenagers, one of whom is a girl, and I don't see any difference between the dress, appearance and behaviour of the most popular female streamers on Twitch and my daughter. They just seem like ordinary girls and young women, dressed in an ordinary way, but playing the kind of video games that are usually played by boys.

Second most popular female streamer on Twitch, Legendary Leah:

www.twitch.tv/legendarylea/c/4700749

I don't see the issue.

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