STREAM REPORT NEWSLETTER

#114

Platforms vs. Ad Blockers ⚔️

November 8, 2023

Welcome to Stream Report, a newsletter from Gaming Careers covering important news and updates in streaming and content creation.

In this issue: We examine YouTube's intensified fight against ad blockers, discuss the implications of Twitch discontinuing its Nintendo Switch app support, and delve into the surge in Twitch viewership sparked by Fortnite's reintroduction of its original map.

YouTube Ramps Up Fight Against Ad Blockers

YouTube Ramps Up Fight Against Ad Blockers
YouTube Ramps Up Fight Against Ad Blockers

YouTube has recently intensified its global efforts to combat ad blockers, prompting a wave of responses from users and industry insiders. This move follows a smaller-scale experiment conducted in June, which has now morphed into a more comprehensive enforcement strategy.

The platform’s latest approach includes displaying a notice that halts video playback unless YouTube is whitelisted or the ad blocker is deactivated. Users facing this block are encouraged to allow ads or subscribe to the YouTube Premium service, which is priced at $13.99 per month in the US, with varying costs in other countries.

This strategy has sparked a wider conversation, raising questions about the viability of ad-based revenue models and the need for more inclusive solutions that benefit both users and content creators.

Creators Applaud YouTube’s Stance

Christopher Lawton, YouTube’s communications manager, has underscored that the use of ad blockers breaches the platform’s terms of service. According to Lawton, ads are crucial in maintaining a diverse creator ecosystem and facilitating global access to YouTube’s extensive content library.

Several creators, such as Hank Green, have shown support for YouTube’s measures, highlighting the vital role that ads play in supporting creators’ ventures.

But What’s the Critics’ Take?

Critics have expressed concerns about the affordability of YouTube Premium, suggesting that the platform should consider lowering its price or offering alternative means to directly support creators.

According to privacy advocates, YouTube’s restrictions on ad blockers could also be breaching online privacy laws set by the European Union.

YouTube’s dominance in the long-form video content market has created a hurdle for potential competitors, leaving the platform without any comparable alternatives. This gives YouTube a significant edge, allowing it to implement changes with a minimized risk of substantial user migration to other platforms.

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Twitch Ends Support for Nintendo Switch App

Twitch Ends Support for Nintendo Switch App
Twitch Ends Support for Nintendo Switch App

In a quiet announcement posted on Twitch’s support page, the company has revealed it’s discontinuing support for the Nintendo Switch app.

Since its launch in late 2021, the app has been met with criticism due to several limitations. Notably, the lack of a chat feature forced users to rely on other devices for interaction during streams. Additionally, the inability to subscribe to creators and the absence of broadcasting capabilities have been flagged as significant shortcomings.

The app will be withdrawn from the Nintendo eShop on November 6th, and access for current users is set to end on January 31st, 2024.

Twitch’s representative, Gabriella Raila, expressed gratitude for the support the Switch community has shown towards Twitch.

While Twitch has previously pledged to focus its engineering efforts on improving mobile applications and introducing additional mobile features, this recent change has sparked conversations about Twitch’s commitment to the apps on consoles.

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Fortnite’s OG Map Spurs Record Twitch Viewership

Fortnites OG Map Spurs Record Twitch Viewership
Fortnite’s OG Map Spurs Record Twitch Viewership

Fortnite has witnessed a significant revival following the reintroduction of its original map, sparking a wave of nostalgia among players. This update has inspired enthusiasts to wear their classic skins and revisit beloved locations like Tilted Towers, demonstrating their enduring bond with the game.

On November 3rd, 29% of all live Twitch channels were streaming Fortnite, peaking at over 30K channels – the highest number this year. Significantly, the game’s player count has soared, mirrored by a substantial boost in Twitch viewership.

In an effort to re-engage audiences, some game developers have turned to nostalgic relaunches of maps or earlier versions. A prime example is the resurgence seen with WoW Classic, where the re-release of the game’s earlier version captivated both old and new players, reigniting interest in the franchise.

Learn More

News Highlights

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The founder of Gaming Careers with a borderline unhealthy obsession for cameras, microphones, and all things streaming. He gets mistaken for Stephen Merchant at least 5 times a day.

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