If we said the words streamer, live streaming, irl (in real life), web marathon in a conversation, most readers probably wouldn’t know what we’re talking about. But this is not the case for their children, belonging to the generations of millennials O WITH. During the last two years, also thanks to a pandemic that forced the world to stop, streaming entertainment on the web has exploded. One of the major examples is Twitch, Amazon’s platform, acquired in 2014 to become the spearhead of the Seattle giant’s web entertainment; with almost thirty million daily users, 2 billion hours of streaming reached in February 2021, the “purple” Davide tries to challenge the giant numbers of the most famous YouTube (100 billion hours). S.u Twitch you play video games, create music, comment on news stories, watch movies or simply talk with your audience of any topic. And it is here, in the ever-connected world of the web, that streamer or irl – a direct external video – have their own meaning, in an increasingly moving jargon.
In recent months there has been a lot of talk about the Amazon platform, which has even seen among the new content creators well-known names in the Italian media and social panorama: Fedez, Cattelan, Christian Vieri, Pierluigi Pardo, or even sports clubs like Milan have opened their own channel. Politics has also decided to deal with it, within the tax reform, of the creators of web and social content, inviting in recent weeks a delegation of representatives at the hearings in Parliament. Without forgetting the news cases or accidents along the way, as happened to a missing girl reported in a former asylum abandoned during a live show or the case of the Crazy Cat Café in Milan. Like every platform it has its own rules and limits; the streamers themselves are responsible for their own channel and for what is said in their chat, the risk is the temporal or definitive closure of their space.
But what is Twitch really and why do more and more young people choose to spend hours in front of the screen of a smartphone or their PC? The usual phrase, trite and withdrawn, of the loss of attractiveness of generalist TV does not explain a phenomenon of this magnitude. To understand more, we asked one of them directly most famous streamers in Italy: Dario Moccia. Born in 1990, cartoonist, collector, he is part of that generation that started by uploading videos to YouTube in the early 10’s of the 2000s. On the purple platform it has a structured weekly schedule: just chatting – discussion with the public -, live gaming on videogames, a virtual pub with friends, interviews with famous people such as Rocco Tanica degli Elio and Le Storie Tese, chef Locatelli, Valerio Lundini and Emanuela Fanelli. During the first lockdown, Moccia was the protagonist of a charity initiative through a river marathon in which streamers and users donated 30 thousand euros to the hospitals of Bergamo and Brescia.
What was Twitch for you?
For me it was a salvation. In the sense that on YouTube I made a video a month and this did not allow me to earn it, it was a passion that in my adult life did not allow me to have a continuous work activity that allowed me to create a family or take out a mortgage for a house . Now I have been able to go further by making real investments. I started over three years ago a bit for fun, a bit to keep in touch with my audience and growing up it has become a full-fledged job. So it was a second artistic life, it was what allowed me to create a future for myself.
Why is the community, the Twitch audience, so responsive to other platforms and can follow a streamer for hours a day?
First of all they are reactive for many hours because, unlike what Report said in January in a report on us, not because they have something wrong, but because in the last year and a half there has been something called Covid and therefore the people got bored at home throwing themselves on social media. And the only social network that for technical peculiarities such as on-screen and live chat, the streamer who responds immediately, which allows more company because you can also keep it in the background as if it were a radio while you do something else, is Twitch. And indeed the platform exploded early last year.
Why do you think well-known faces of generalist TV but also other realities such as sports clubs landed on the platform in 2020?
In my opinion there are three answers. The first is boredom. Because some faces, I think of a Pierluigi Pardo, tried the platform to see what it was and then they found themselves well. The second is fashion, during the lockdown there was a lot of hype around the platform. The third is to look for another channel to talk to young people who are the main users, some have succeeded and some less, but at least they have tried.
What is the secret to being successful on the platform?
The secret in my opinion is to be good. Like all jobs of this type, you must never have dead moments, you must know how to entertain, have the joke ready, prepare yourself upstream for the live shows that you are going to do in the evening or in the afternoon so as not to bore the public, in short, you must transform it into a thoughtful format. that has a common thread that connects all your content.
Were the hearings for the tax reform of some streamers in Parliament a recognition of the category that has long been asking for a dedicated Nececo code?
Yes, it was also now because it is an industry that makes a lot of money and that interests the public of young people who interface with new forms of entertainment and it was time for someone to notice. In the world of social media in Italy there has been one of the major influencers in the world for years, politics always takes a while to arrive.
Streamers who play Irl can run into unpleasant situations, as happened a few weeks ago at the Crezy Cat Café in Milan, was it a coincidence?
In that Irl (in real life, live live video Ed.) Ok to criticize it because it was open to criticism, but we must not make a bundle of all the grass and paint Twitch as the devil because there are streamers who do not bother anyone and are the majority. This can be related to television: the fact that there are junk programs on TV doesn’t mean that all programs suck.
Have there been cases of users who wrote to you in private during or after the pandemic and who reported personal problems to you perhaps because they see the streamer as a sort of “friend” of the web?
Everyday. This is a parapsychological work, in the sense that you keep them company, every day you are there with them, they entertain with you and it is precisely as if you were a friend to them from a certain point of view. Sometimes they tell you about their personal problems or they thank you for making them smile in a difficult moment or letting them know about something they may not have known.
How does a streamer make money?
Monthly subscriptions make up the bulk of your revenue, part goes to the platform and part goes to that specific streamer you subscribed to. Then from the advertisements. I make an account at the end of the month and send the invoices to Twitch. During the marathons, which were mostly done in the first lockdown, direct donations from users were also an important income but now they are often a minority, at least on my channel.
Is Twitch a fad or could it be a web television model with a stable future?
It depends on who creates the content. If it is possible to make the platform a show, always maintaining their spontaneity and making the right investments, both on the part of the streamer and on the part of the platform, then it will be possible to reach that qualitative level, also of technical means, that it can really do. competition to television.
What is Dario Moccia’s lore?
It’s me and my friends, along with the people, streamers or not, who appear in my lives. We have created a sort of macrocosm at the Marvel Cinematic Universe and now the public is following this sort of sitcom. We also recently made some collectible cards of this sort of universe.
A project that saw you as an editor and art director, involving various artists, some of whom collaborate with important international brands …
It was wonderful. I involved about thirty artists to create these cards, which are like stickers you can collect, with the characters or situations that have characterized my channel up to now. All done entirely in Italy, from creative work to distribution. It was five months of work in which I took care, together with other professionals, of the entire supply chain. And it was a success: in less than 24 hours we sold 7500 pre-sales of boxes of 70 euros each.
A result that not even a mainstream publisher could have done so quickly. Where does so much loyalty come from?
When you do something like this it creates a chain phenomenon because the audience wants to find in a different way the characters who have kept them company this past year and a half. And then the cards are objectively beautiful and on such a particular thing our audience appreciated.
A case recently occurred in Palermo in which two influencers lost their social credibility in less than 24 hours and this had a strong impact on public opinion. How important is this factor on the web?
Much. Better never mix with people of little value. Always be consistent with your audience. By now hiding behind a finger is no longer needed, perhaps it was once used in generalist television. Today, transparency with your audience is everything, and it’s something that always comes back to you.