Twitch streamer speaks out after receiving “lowest ever” payout amid platform changes

Virginia Glaze

Twitch Partners and Affiliates across the platform have been experiencing extremely low payouts from the site amid ongoing changes that have sparked backlash from streamers. We spoke with streamer ‘Babywock’ about the issue, and why he believes Twitch needs to get in touch with its community now more than ever.

Twitch is the internet’s premier destination for streaming live content of all kinds — be it traveling abroad, broadcasting esports tournaments, or even hosting award shows.

However, many streamers and viewers are looking toward other platforms like Kick and YouTube to suit their broadcasting needs as Twitch continues to introduce new policies that have incited mass backlash from users over the past few weeks.

To summarize, the recent outrage against Twitch first sparked on June 6, when the site introduced proposed changes to branded content on its platform. These restrictions would have prohibited “burned in” video, audio, and display ads which… didn’t go over well with broadcasters.

Twitch branded content guidelines

Twitch eventually removed these new guidelines and its CEO apologized for the ordeal — but that wasn’t the end of the site’s issues. Twitch also introduced changes to its Terms of Service that have banned multi-streaming on “Twitch-like” platforms, putting another damper on the ways creators can expand their revenue.

Now, Twitch is in hot water yet again as the platform has brought back its coveted 70/30 subscriber split in a new Partner Plus program… but the hefty requirements for receiving said split haven’t gone over well, either.

Twitch streamers report lower payouts amid platform changes

In the midst of this, a slew of both Partnered and Affiliated streamers have noticed that their subscriber payouts were unusually low this month. We spoke with one of these broadcasters, who created a viral tweet calling out the platform over this unexplained issue — and ended up receiving a ton of testimonials from other creators experiencing the same problem.

“I saw one number, and then what I got was like nowhere near [what I expected],” Partnered Twitch streamer Babywock told us. “So I was like, ‘Oh. Something must have gone into effect.’ But it’s not only just affecting Partners, it’s also affecting Affiliates. So, that’s where I was concerned. I was like, ‘This is not even a Partner problem. This is a community problem.'”

Although Babywock is coming off of a 150-day, 24-hour stream, and has spent the past several weeks moving to Texas and building a new setup, he was prepared for lower numbers… but not the ones he saw on his most recent payout.

“Yes, I dropped from 4,000 subs to a thousand subs, but I’ve been streaming for a year and a half. I know what a thousand subs is,” he clarified. “It’s never different. So in my head I’m like, ‘Okay, boom, this is gonna come.’ Even though I haven’t streamed in a month, I still have an amazing community. I have people gifting me 10 subs a day, even though I’m not there. But I’m still active in my community. I’m on Twitter, I’m on, I’m in Discord 24-7.”

“So, to see what’s supposed to be roughly over a grand be under $700 is insane.”

Babywock wasn’t the only streamer apparently impacted by lower payouts, by far. A slew of other broadcasters had similar complaints, with one streamer even claiming she got a negative payout — possibly as a result of a few chargebacks on top of an already lower income than expected.

“I felt penalized,” Babywock admitted. “It’s like, wow. I’m doing it right. You know, I’m bringing people to your platform. Catching that energy. You know, you’ll have me on recommended and more people will find me, love my energy, and then whatever happens from there, happens from there.”

Twitch streamer “hurt” after low payout goes unexplained

For Babywock, the issue hits home, as he has lauded Twitch far and wide as a good place to stream — even complimenting the platform amid backlash on its 50/50 subscriber split in an interview with the New York Times last year.

“I feel hurt,” he continued. “Definitely hurt. Like I said, I put [out] a lot of love, so a portion of my Twitch subs go to other streamers — but that’s a deal that I made with myself before I was even a streamer. That’s how I’ve always moved across the platform.”

As for what’s causing these low payouts? Dexerto reached out to Twitch for clarification on the matter, but was told they could not comment on the subject due to “privacy reasons.” However, Babywock believes this might have been an issue stemming from the site’s 50/50 sub split, which was introduced in 2022.

“So for partners, I know that Twitch told us a long time ago that it was gonna go to 50/50,” he explained. “But nobody really knew when. I guess that was the thing — I thought some partners already were under the 50/50 program because of how many people were complaining about it. You know, I’m getting told they were already getting hit.”

“So, I’m guessing that now it’s going into effect. I had to assume I’ve been getting the 70/30 the whole time, you know, and now [I’m getting the 50/50 payout.]”

How can Twitch fix its problems? Streamers say communication is a must

There’s a lot of ire surrounding Twitch right now, but how can the site fix things? Babywock suggests that the platform needs a dedicated community spokesperson and feels like the platform’s creators are simply left in the dark.

“I think they should listen to the community more about what’s going on,” he said. “Because with everything going on with Kick, I feel like this is an L on their part, you know?”

“I don’t know if there is even a spokesperson who is reaching out. I just feel like if you’re not averaging over 5,000 viewers, people don’t really don’t care about you. Just having a spokesperson for the people who are down here or who actually have concerns, that would be amazing.”

Though he’s been on the platform for years, Babywock was clearly frustrated with the lack of communication from Twitch. Especially for creators of his size that are making decent money and have a solid following but aren’t pulling tens of thousands of viewers.

“I feel like they don’t have enough resources for the people still trying to come up. I don’t even wanna say the bottom, because everybody has to start somewhere, you know? …A spokesperson would be amazing, you know, just for the people still coming up, too.”

twitch logo partner plus
Twitch’s new Partner Plus program is sparking backlash from big and small streamers, alike.

In fact, Babywock claimed that he might even start streaming on Kick part-time as a result of his lowered income… especially given that the competitor site boasts an attractive 95/5 subscriber split with streamers.

He feels that he won’t be the only one looking to jump ship either now that Twitch has implemented its controversial new Partner Plus program. And, with a massive creator like xQc recently announcing that he’s making the switch to Kick, creators of all sizes are eyeing Twitch’s competitor in the wake of recent actions from the platform that clearly haven’t landed with the streamers that keep it alive.

“I think Partner Plus is gonna create a riot,” he revealed. “It’s not sinking into the Partners yet, but they’re gonna riot. There’s gonna be a rebellion. There has to be.”

Babywock is just one of many streamers left frustrated and confused by the plethora of new changes Twitch is seemingly rolling out one after the other. Although CEO Dan Clancy has been somewhat open with users, it looks like more and more broadcasters are considering making the leap to other platforms — and only time will tell if Twitch will be able to maintain its status as the premier live streaming destination.