Streaming giant Twitch has been called out for allegedly misconstruing the number of viewers that the site’s Crown channel boasts, with paid advertising deals as well as a large number of unengaged viewers reportedly boosting Twitch’s stats.
Bloomberg has reported that Amazon – the parent company of streaming platform Twitch – has been reporting misleading viewership numbers for their television network-style channel Crown. The implications of this claim meaning that sponsorship deals and the amount outlets are paying to advertise on Crown does not align with the actual viewership numbers.
While Amazon states that Crown brings in tens of thousands of viewers and is consistently placing in the top 10 entertainment channels for the site, an analysis from Bloomberg reports that Crown’s viewers are “junk views” rather than being a “highly engaged audience.”
For a viewership to be considered engaged, elements such as interacting with chat as well as staying on the stream for a long period of time are all key factors. However, Amazon’s Crown channel has viewers jumping away quickly and not taking part in chat features and participation.
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Marcus Graham, a vice president of community development at Fortis Games who previously worked at Twitch for over 10 years, explained to Bloomberg how “someone who lands on Twitch’s front page and then navigates off to watch another streamer is not a highly engaged viewer,” Graham then going on to add that this type of consumption is similar to the idea of “channel surfing…the front page is what I call ‘hollow traffic.’”
As well as this, Bloomberg also reported that Amazon has paid Twitch approximately tens of thousands of dollars to promote Crown programs on the site’s home page. Additionally, other companies reportedly have paid anywhere from $150,000 to $500,000-plus to promote themselves on the channel.
At the time of writing, Twitch is yet to address this report and reveal whether or not the Crown channel audience is less engaged and smaller than what they have previously indicated.