Getting the Twitch with @Twitch
Have you heard the latest Silicon Valley gossip about our dear friend, Google? Monday, Variety broke the following news:
Google’s YouTube has reached a preliminary deal to buy Twitch, a popular videogame-streaming company, for more than $1 billion, according to sources familiar with the pact.
The deal, in an all-cash offer, is expected to be announced imminently, sources said. If completed the acquisition would be the most significant in the history of YouTube, which Google acquired in 2006 for $1.65 billion. The impending acquisition comes after longtime Google ad exec Susan Wojcicki was named CEO of YouTube earlier this year.
My Twitter feed ruptured Monday morning with a combination of sarcasm about the nearly $1 billion price tag Google reportedly will pay for Twitch.tv, gamer-concern regarding the hypothetical destruction of the site by such a behemoth of a company, and straight-up confusion from those non-gamers about what Twitch is, and the subsequent value of such a site.
Luckily, we, at Metaverse Mod Squad, LOVE to be on top of our industry trends and pop culture. So, if you’d like to have a unique understanding of Twitch and what can be done with Twitch, check out these fantastic posts from the last year:
- Like to Play or Live to Play: My Cheats On Learning Game Geekery
- Is It Weird That I Twitch?
- Twitch Plays Pokémon!
Each article provides insights from a community, or customer, standpoint. What I find fascinating about this merger is: while everyone else in seems to be geared towards apps and mobile experiences, it’s great to see value placed on a platform that caters to the still-relevant console gamers and PC gamers of the world (amongst other game-like streaming activities). Honestly, I am not surprised by Google’s interest in Twitch! Some of my favorite “Tubers” (or Youtube Celebs) have been trying to live stream on Youtube — but it just hasn’t taken off at the same level as Twitch.tv (viewers are used to engaging with Youtube channels at their leisure, and not so much for live-interactivity). Plus, I feel there are smoother, better tools on Twitch.tv that lend towards livestreaming in a way that makes Youtube feel clunky.
Twitch.tv is a fascinating platform, and an awesome opportunity to showcase games for producers, engage with audiences, drive community interactivity, and give a voice to those super-gamers (or whales) that act as voluntary ambassadors to your brand. Who knows… maybe Youtube’s version of Twitch.tv can resurrect the original idea of G4 — a channel of gamers and content — and then blend it with the success of Netflix in streaming unique, lower-cost content on a unique platform accessible by TV, Computer, and Handheld devices, and actually find success in that market. What do you think?
Director of Engagement & Strategy