Twitch Prime is terminating most of its ad-free viewing benefits – here’s what it means for you

    
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Even if you’re among the select elite of society that has access to Twitch Prime and its bevy of benefits, you will no longer be exempt from the plague of common advertising. That’s because Twitch has decided that universal ad-free viewing no longer will be a perk of the Prime program and will be ending that benefit on September 14th (or October 15th if you are a Twitch Prime member with a monthly sub).

“Advertising is an important source of support for the creators who make Twitch possible,” the company said. “This change will strengthen and expand that advertising opportunity for creators so they can get more support from their viewers for doing what they love. We want Twitch to remain a place where anyone can enjoy one-of-a-kind interactive entertainment, and ads allow us to continue making Twitch the best place for creators to build communities around the things they love and make money doing it.”

You can access ad-free viewing if you subscribe to Twitch Turbo, however, at a rate of $8.99 per month. And as a Prime member, you also still get one “free” sub per month, which will allow you to avoid ads on one channel at least. (We hope you’re using it on Massively OP!) No other Twitch Prime benefits will be changing at this time.

Source: Twitch Prime. Thanks TJ!
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Mike Minier

What’s still shocking to me is that people will spend their time(and money apparently) watching others play video games instead of, you know….playing them. No offense intended in the slightest, I just don’t get it.

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Crowe

Right there with you. I don’t get watching someone else play unless I’m trying to figure out if the game is interesting enough to play. And I generally do YouTube for that so I can skip ahead. I lump the whole “watching others play” up with esports for stuff that just makes no sense to me. Maybe it’s just a generational thing?

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Stropp

I do.

I am currently on the receiving end of some terrible insomnia and have been for the last few months. So when I get up at 3am and can’t get back to sleep until 4:30 or 5, and since there’s nothing on TV except home shopping, I turn on the computer and watch a stream or 3. At that time I’m not in the mood to play a game either.

It’s not all games either. I also enjoy watching the painting/art streams in the creative section.

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kgptzac

There’s a comic strip that can bring some self reflection on people who make statements like this, but I’m far too lazy to search for it… but let me break it down for you.

Why I spend time: like many people I have more than one monitor. Twitch can be streaming in a window and i’d be doing something else, for example, playing another video game, on my main monitor.

Why people pay streamers: Because streamers are essentially entertainers. They add personalities to a gameplay sessions. I personally finds vast majority of such personalities to be excessive and annoying, but there are just way too many people streaming out there, so I eventually found a very few folks I do like.

Anything else shocking to you that you’d like be explained to you?

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Mike Minier

I too have a second monitor, which is used for things like work or Netflix/Hulu. This doesn’t help me to understand why you like what you like. I will never understand it. It doesn’t mean I don’t respect people that stream or watch streamers. As for paying them, if people get enjoyment from something and want to pay for it then so be it. More power to them. That doesn’t mean I personally have to understand it.

I’m absolutely certain there are many things I like to do that others do not. It doesn’t bother me though, and I don’t get snarky when people ask me why I do them. Again sorry if you took offense, but I am not going to change my view on it.

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kgptzac

It’s your business to insist on ignorance, but it’s another thing to air it for everyone to see your meaningless judgement and disapproval. Don’t be surprised of snarky replies; expect them.

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Mike Minier

I see it’s your business to get the last word in. I’ll leave ya to it! Have fun!

Alex Js.
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Alex Js.

Yeap, there was already a huge thread on Reddit about this, the majority of people’s responses were “I guess I will be turning my adblocker on again”. And personally I will be doing the same – not only video Ads are EXTREMELY annoying, but the idiots at Twitch continue polluting their site with random buttons such as “Free Loot” overlay on top of every video (yes, you can close it but I shouldn’t be doing it anyway) or the “New Prime Loot” button on top of the page with notification badge (I don’t care about any worthless “loot” that Twitch offers) so the Adblockers are basically a necessity to permanently remove all this visual fluff…

And before any idiot will try to accuse me of “freeloading” – I do pay streamers whose entertainment I consider as “worthy” (I spent at least several thousands of $$$ on donations, not including the games I “gifted” through Steam), I just don’t like the whole “backtracking” the Amazon did with Prime (especially after yet another annual fee increase to $120) and I don’t like the overall direction the Twitch is headed towards (all the new “improvements” they spent their money on during last few years were towards more “visual spam” for useless fluff, including a HUGE waste of money on buying the Curse and trying to turn it into “Twitch Desktop App”). So yea, I don’t mind supporting individual streamers (and I will continue doing so) but I won’t be wasting a single $$$ on Twitch themselves, that includes not watching any forced Ads on their site.

packagegrope
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packagegrope

ublock origin. no more ads on twitch.

you’re welcome.

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John Bagnoli

Maybe I’m just old but I grew up with commercials and who cares.

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

I do. Especially if I have already paid for the service.

Also old and have cancelled cable because the ads were awful.

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John Bagnoli

I get it. I ‘cut the cord’ years ago but they are going to try to make their money somehow and ads seem obvious. Doesn’t seem like something to get in a twist over.

Mewmew
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Mewmew

People are in a twist over it because it’s always been part of the benefits of Twitch Prime, and they haven’t had to deal with ads because of it. Losing benefits people have always had in a service people pay for is always going to get people upset.

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squid

“Advertising is an important source of money,” the company said. “This change will strengthen and expand that advertising opportunity so we can make more money. We want Twitch to remain a place where we can make a lot of money, and ads allow us to continue making money.”

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Malcolm Swoboda

This wasn’t the biggest reason I have Prime, but its at least in the top 5.

And I’m still not into Twitch enough to get Turbo, even with this change.

So it basically means that if I renew Prime, it’ll much less likely be because of Twitch.

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Armsbend

I thought I’d say I’d never support this because there is no streamer that I care enough about to watch ads for – but then remembered I really do like and care about THIS community. This is my only online hang out spot now. So I’d watch MJ streaming ads. In fact, I encourage her to run them if she can. Because I want her and MOP to succeed.

So I imagine there are a great other many people out there who feel the same way about whatever community they are a part of – providing Amazon actually will float some of that money their way.

Bree Royce
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Bree Royce

Thank you, Arms. I’m not sure what we’re going to do – truthfully, Twitch subs, even the freebie ones you guys apply to us, help waaaaaaaay more than ads, so it’s a tradeoff of whether it’s actually worth it to annoy everyone with the streaming ads. They’re not so bad on replay videos, but I hate the ads on *live* streams especially!

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Reht

Thanks for the info Bree on the subs vs ads, was actually wondering about that.

Bree Royce
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Bree Royce

It’s possible that a different sort of channel would have a different breakdown! But that’s how it is for us as an indie generalist channel where the channel is one thing we do rather than the ONLY thing, you know? :D We don’t get a million views on a stream, and most people don’t watch every stream, but a lot of people just follow and sub for one or two games, and it’s become more of an asset every month since Twitch added the sub system, hands down.

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Armsbend

I’d always heard that subs pay more but maybe Amazon is going to change the entire system a bit. Either or, a few ads/per hour won’t kill me for streams I really enjoy – which are a small handful. As long as they don’t randomly interrupt a broadcast. But that would be business suicide I’d think.

Mewmew
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Mewmew

If they’re a few minutes during a bathroom or water break that’s not much of a big deal honestly. It’s been so long since I’ve seen ads there I forget how they usually work :D

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

A tale as old as time,
A song as old as rhyme,

Someone makes a buck,
doing what they love.
Then it’s not enough,
and Oops, here comes the f…

A tale as old as time,
Song as old as rhyme,

Greedy is the beast.

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rafael12104

Heh. What a bunch of bullshit. It’s not the ad revenue for the content creators that they are protecting, it is Twitch centrals revenue based on ads that they care about. They get a cut from content creators to begin with, but more importantly, they have their own ads which they drop quite liberally.

So, I’m a Primer Twitcher… err or whatever you want to call it. It is part of my Amazon Prime membership. It is a much appreciated feature, but I’ll still be a Amazon Prime member Twitch or no because of the savings I realize in shipping.

So I’m outraged to a”meh” degree. What is gauling though is that they think that we are a bunch of idiots. Sure, oh yes, you are protecting your conten creators. Yeah, that’s it. Otherwise the service would be completely ad free, am I right Twitch?

xpsync
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xpsync

Yea, “meh” really, i only got Amazon Prime on trial to get a free Warframe, lol. Forgot to cancel and am now a Amazon Prime sub’r since then though i discovered its not such a bad thing, Warframe treats, Prime Video (using this allot) and Prime Music, Twitch Prime, crappy free games, free in game loot, Prime deals, and who knows you’ll prroably need AP for these new Amazon games coming anyway.

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Greaterdivinity

This is a benefit for you, the user! You get to pay us, AND you get to see all these AMAZING ads! Aren’t you lucky!

Or you can pay us another $80, bumping your annual spend to $200, to get back to your original ad-free experience.

You’re welcome.

From everything I’ve heard Twitch still doesn’t actually make any money, so this isn’t surprising. They’ve driven the value of the Twitch sub up considerably over the years between expanding perks and integrating with Amazon Prime, now they’re scaling back to get more money out of users/advertisers and hoping they don’t lose the paying audience they grew.

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

most of amazon’s operations don’t make money and aren’t necessarily about making money tho. that’s kind of their business model :P

but otherwise i think you’re right about wanting to entice advertisers more.

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Armsbend

Yeah the fact that their prime subs keep going up every quarter might indicate they do make money on twitch – just not directly.

deekay_plus
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deekay_plus

it’s like how google “doesn’t make money on youtube”, and yet it’s one of many components of their business which gives essential value to their actual money makers.