Thursday, 30 Mar 2023

Twitch Testing Feature That Lets Viewers Pay Up To $100 To Highlight Messages

You can subscribe to your favourite Twitch stars and even pay to have messages read aloud on select streams, but the platform is adding a new means of getting your favourite creator's attention – Elevated Chat. If you wanna splash out up to $100, you can highlight one of your messages.

This is a lot like YouTube's Super Chats, though the timing is a little different. You can pay $5 for a 30-second highlight, $10 for one minute, $25 for a minute and a half, $50 for two minutes, and $100 for two and a half minutes. The split in revenue is 70-30 (as reported by Eurogamer).

If more than one person decides to elevate their message to catch a streamer's attention, they'll be added to a queue that moderators will be able to manually manage. There are already some concerns around this feature which is no surprise given that the aforementioned read-aloud messages are optional for a reason – hate speech and bigotry.

Hate raids are all too common on Twitch. These are mass groupings of people who flood a stream and spam obscene messages in the comments, usually slurs, but it can go a step further. These can be used to reveal private information (doxxing) which can even lead to swatting, which is when someone calls the police on a streamer to have their home raided.

Being able to highlight messages could make it easier for trolls to share hate speech, theoretically, so it remains to be seen how Twitch will seek to prevent and combat this.

This is not only Twitch's answer to YouTube's own Super Chats feature, but a continuation of a new feature it added last year that allows streamers to highlight first-time chatters, moderators, subscribers, suspicious users, and more, giving them tools to better flag their viewers.

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