Jan 21, 2020

Twitch grows bigger than gaming

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Reproduced from StreamElements; Table: Axios Visuals

Twitch, the Amazon-owned video-streaming service that got its start with live video-gaming and esports, is expanding into other other verticals.

Why it matters: So many Silicon Valley social and video upstarts debut with a niche purpose, like Twitch with live-streaming esports or Discord with chatting about esports, but eventually broaden in scope as consumers find new uses for them.

The big picture: A growing portion of the hours watched on Twitch now comes from non-gaming categories like video blogging and ASMR videos.

  • Just Chatting, the live vlogging category on Twitch, is close to becoming the second-most popular category on its top games chart, according to a Q4 report from StreamElements, a company that provides tools and resources for live video content creators.

Between the lines: Non-gaming Twitch stars are beginning to develop widespread prominence, while Twitch gamers are becoming celebrities in areas that transcend gaming, like music, art, and video blogging, per Wired.

What's next: Twitch still owns the vast majority of hours watched on live gaming platforms, but Facebook Gaming and Microsoft's Mixer are quickly growing.

Go deeper: Esports, the new social square

Go deeper

Black Americans' competing crises

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

For many black Americans, this moment feels like a crisis within a crisis within a crisis.

The big picture: It's not just George Floyd's killing by police. Or the deaths of EMT Breonna Taylor and jogger Ahmaud Arbery. Or the demeaning of birdwatcher Christian Cooper and journalist Omar Jimenez. Or the coronavirus pandemic's disproportionate harm to African Americans. It's that it's all happening at once.

Amnesty International: U.S. police must end militarized response to protests

Washington State Police use tear gas to disperse a crowd in Seattle during a demonstration protesting the death of George Floyd. Photo: Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images

Amnesty International issued a statement on Sunday morning calling for an end to militarized policing in several U.S. cities and the use of "excessive force" against demonstrators protesting police brutality.

Why it matters: The human rights group said police across the country were "failing their obligations under international law to respect and facilitate the right to peaceful protest, exacerbating a tense situation and endangering the lives of protesters."

2 hours ago - Health

Coronavirus looms over George Floyd protests across the country

Protestors rally in Minneapolis. Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Health experts fear that massive protests against police brutality in major cities around the United States could result in new coronavirus outbreaks due to the close proximity of demonstrators, AP reports.

Why it matters: The U.S. has already recorded more confirmed coronavirus cases and deaths than any other country in the world. A potential surge in cases stemming from the protests would come as many states are weeks into their phased reopening plans.