Hype Chat was a feature on Twitch that made viewers’ chat messages stand out. Viewers could boost their chat for a sum ranging from one dollar to five hundred dollars. A portion of the Hype Chat was also shared with the streamer on Twitch. The feature, deemed controversial by Twitch community members, has been discontinued from the streaming platform.
This was done because, in any live stream with many concurrent viewers, many want to make themselves heard. Some are even a little desperate to catch the streamer’s attention and resort to acts like spamming their chat. This results in the chat scrolling rapidly without giving a chance to read what their viewers have to say.
What Was the Hype Chat Feature on Twitch Streams?
The Hype Chat’s purpose was to shorten the distance between the viewers’ chats and the streamers, at least theoretically. The purchased messages were pinned on top of the chat, providing better chances of the streamer reading the message.
The Streamers could also set the minimum amount up to one hundred dollars. Viewers could select the message they want to send, which varies in cost. The cost also decides the visual appearance, the time it will stay pinned, and the allowed character count.
Naturally, paying more for a Hype Chat will make it stand out with a more pronounced visual design, higher character count, and a higher period at the pinned spot. The Hype Chat and other monetization features on the Platform were added, like Bits, Subs, and Gift Subs.
The split between the Hype Chat revenue between Twitch and the Partner was 70/30, with the majority going to the partner and the rest to Twitch. While it asks users to pay, it does not allow them to use banned words, phrases, and objectionable language.
Initially, it was rolled out only for partners of the Platform. Partners are streamers who take streaming seriously and are committed to it. Partners also enjoy a higher revenue from ads and are allowed more freedom in channel customization. A concrete criterion for a Streamer to become a partner can be found here.
The feature has now been discontinued, as per community feedback. This happened just five months after Twitch rolled the feature out.
Twitch’s Official Statement Surrounding the Discontinuation of the Feature
Twitch announced the discontinuation of the feature taken to their official website. This is what they posted on the matter. This is what their statement read:
We’ve decided to deprecate Hype Chat and invest more into improving Cheering and Bits. After assessing early usage, we didn’t see the results we expected from Hype Chat.
The announcement further read:
We still believe in the value of pinned messages in fast-moving chats, so streamers will be able to turn pin Cheers with Bits on or off in their channels in the coming weeks.
The announcement further read that when the feature was initially announced, it was thought it would benefit the streamers and help viewers try to get their message across. It would also allow viewers to support their favorite streamers more.
Unfortunately, this couldn’t be achieved, and the feature had to be depreciated. The post elaborated on the reason why the feature was deprecated below:
However, we learned through community feedback after the launch that viewers saw more value in Cheering because it was easier to understand exactly how much streamers earned from Bits.
It further stated that due to currency conversion, other issues also arose, leading to confusion. It is worth noting that other streaming platforms like YouTube have similar options, like the famous Superchat feature on YouTube.
Now, Twitch will focus solely on Cheering and Bits features. The usage of these features is moderated. The community’s feedback plays a massive role in deciding what should be implemented and what should not. Twitch has released features in the past, which it has then deprecated. Hype chat is just the latest one.
It will be interesting to see if direct methods like the Hype Chat will return to Twitch in the future or not.