After a couple years of monstering it up and experiencing the FGC mostly through streams, here are my wall-of-text thoughts as an outsider. I was thinking about this a lot yesterday, because when I popped into “poverty chat” yesterday, people were complaining about someone posting links to child porn. [side rant: Maybe you should think about closing poverty chat somehow, Arturo. You don’t need to pander to the few fucks who don’t want to pony up $4.99. Their next destination after is Mo0nz chat, so maybe he should think about that too. Make the poverty chat monsters go as far away as possible please, nothing good can come of it. Who doesn’t have $4.99 or the ability to pay $4.99 online? Some kid without a credit card or paypal account. That’s it. More evidence they’re kids: they get excited when people post links to easily google-able thick asian porn. Who the fuck can’t do that on their own?]
Stream monsters, like 4chan /b/ or reddit or any other site that just lets people post/talk without registering, are a flood of doo-doo. But twitch controls the faucet, just as all those other sites could control it too in various ways, if they wanted. Since you don’t need to go through verification steps to make an account to chat, the chat is naturally fucked…it is in most channels with no restrictions, light modding, and 100s to 1000s of viewers (look at siglemic’s or cosmo’s chat. It’s just spam.) I know reddit has easy registration so they could get as many registrations as possible and I imagine twitchtv is on the same policy, as a relatively young and barely monetized site. This way, people aren’t initially turned off and the admins can say “we’ve got 70 billion registered users” to potential buyers, as if half of them weren’t accounts made by banned people. So, I am partially blaming twitchtv for the situation…they don’t have any front-line defense, which most sensible sites who care about the quality of their public discussion have. The racism, homophobia, sexism is not some special FGC thing. or even a gamer thing. Look at the comments section on any newspaper’s website and you’ll see the truly offensive shit.
The chat is an unreadable scroll of idiots posting ascii cocks and idiots complaining about bad stream monsters, as if that does anything or is even visible in 100mph chat. This is how it’s always going to be, unless twitch gets tighter registration or, even better, the broadcaster puts it in sub-only mode. Stream monsters will complain loudly, but seriously, they don’t matter, ignore them. The people who are not completely stupid will understand 100% why it’s in sub-only mode. The people who want to make the broadcaster feel bad about that are probably 15 year olds who are pissed about not being able to post cocks. These trolls band together and try to make it look like they’re representative or something. I can’t emphasize enough how much these people need to be ignored. It’s pretty embarrassing when broadcasters catch feelings from what people are saying in the chat–if they aren’t telling you the stream is down or something is off about the quality, ignore them. Maybe 100 guys in the chat are all complaining at once about SkiSonic on the mic and it looks bad, but 10k people are watching. Most of us don’t care when he states something slightly off because we understand he’s been on the mic for 10 hours and that nobody else wants to do it. 99.9% of the time, the shit people are talking in the chat is just memetic–they’re just parroting what other people are saying and don’t have any good reason why. 15 year olds, dude.
So, stream monsters are not some product of the FGC, they’re a bunch of bored trolls at home who would take any anonymous opportunity to be dicks, FGC related or not. And do we really need the chat? I think all we need is a handful of people to tell the broadcaster whether it’s lagging or not. If you can find a way to facilitate a good chat, then more power to you. Spooky’s stream numbers haven’t been that affected by sub-chat, April Duels still got 10k+ viewers. The trash balls who enjoy stream chat will go to someone else’s channel and post porn instead of watching the match. There are thousands of viewers want to watch fighting games and don’t care about stream chat.
TL;DR: fuck stream monsters. Nothing good will come of pandering to the people actively bitching about everything in chat. They are not representative of anything. They are not the ones donating money, subbing, or giving any constructive feedback; nor are they playing in tourneys or even going to them. If they say something about you “selling out” because of sub-chat, fuck them because you’re providing a service, one that has been free for years and has improved 100000x year after year. And if you’re a tourney broadcaster that doesn’t want that crap on their channel, either get sub-chat or a fucking army of moderators. Cause it’s not like complaining about stream monsters is going to change them. They’re just born that way and can be safely ignored…if you think the way to go about this is to try to change the stream monster mentality, have fun with your lifetime of intense suffering and heartbreak. Nobody is going to hate a broadcaster for trying to take control of their chat except the people who love the mayhem. Even without all the bullshit stream monsters post, it’s just practical to limit the chat so that it’s reasonably readable when there are 10k viewers watching.