One of the world’s most popular female content creators, Imane ‘Pokimane’ Anys, has spoken about how Twitch, a video game streaming platform, has ”dramatically” changed for female streamers.
Pokimane is one of Twitch’s earlier adopters, and started streaming in 2013.
Early in her career, she faced a string of abuse and hate speech, from both random viewers and male content creators.
Reported first by Dexerto, Pokimane returned from a hiatus to sit down with the Trash Taste podcast, a YouTube variety show. On the podcast, she explained how far Twitch has come as a platform for female streamers.
“Do you guys remember back in the day, especially when League was always the most popular game on Twitch, what was always running rampant was these videos talking about ‘female Twitch streamers and cleavage?’ That was the thing. That was the clickbait everywhere,” she said, referring to a period of time when viewers would harass women for wearing shirts or clothing that showed cleavage.
It also was a period when less savory viewers would report women for any minor infraction, under a sexist belief that women didn’t belong on Twitch.
Male streamers would often comment on female streamers’ attire, with some even grossly rating their looks live — while Twitch would often issue penalties and bans to women for wearing clothes that had low-cut collars or skirts/dresses with splits up the sides.
In the podcast, Pokimane explains that Twitch as a company (and Twitch’s audience) has grown “more diversified” every year, while also explaining how the culture has shifted towards streamers that provide a “boyfriend or girlfriend” experience.
Many top streamers and content creators are male or male-identifying with primarily female audiences — the direct inverse of what people accused creators like Pokimane of having.
Pokimane’s appearance on Trash Taste also heralded a new era for her content. She has announced that she is streaming less on Twitch and will be expanding to other platforms, taking advantage of the new Twitch policy that allows partners to create content for other websites. As long as it isn’t simultaneously broadcast, that is.
Other content creators are also exploring opportunities outside of Twitch. Amouranth, another top streamer, made millions off of a combination of Twitch and OnlyFans, while Fuslie, a content creator for 100 Thieves, is headed over to YouTube Gaming.
If you want to learn about some Australian streamers, check out our list of the biggest Aussie Twitch streamers.
— written by Junior Miyai on behalf of GLHF