Twitch has made some tweaks to how it pays the streamers on a platform, and it might mean some streamers make more money, while others take a pay cut.
“These changes aim to create a long term, transparent framework for streamer compensation that rewards and encourages creators who are committed to live streaming,” Twitch CEO Dan Clancy said in a blog post earlier this week.
Clancy said the company’s goal is to provide a revenue model that’s easy to understand and sustainable.
This comes as the Amazon-owned company laid off 500 employees – about 35% of its workforce at the beginning of the year. Last year, Twitch lost 400 employees amid cuts at Amazon. The company continues to struggle to turn a profit.
First, Clancy says the video streaming platform is changing its Partner Plus Program, which starting May 1, will just be called the Plus Program.
Under the revamped program, Twitch is expanding the threshold of qualifications that streamers must meet to make money on paid and gift subscriptions to their channel. In addition, the expansion will now include Affiliates, or those with 50 followers who stream eight hours on seven different days reaching at least an average of three viewers.
Twitch is also killing its $100,000 cap for its highest earning streamers. Clancy said the company received feedback that the cap “served as a disincentive” for impacted streamers while limiting earnings and growth opportunities.
Twitch is also changing its Prime Gaming subscription. Prime Gaming lets users who maintain an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription get a free Twitch subscription to give to a creator each month. Depending on the creator, they could get 50% or 70% of the sub.
Starting June 3, Twitch is changing the Prime Gaming payment to a flat rate based on the subscriber’s country. In short, this will mean a pay cut for some streamers.
“For most streamers, this change will not have a major impact on their revenue,” Clancy said. “While any decrease will feel disappointing, the difference between what streamers receive today for a Prime Gaming subscription and what they will receive after the change to fixed rates is less than 5 percent in the vast majority of countries.”
According to Twitch, the streamers most impacted will be the ones who get a “70% net revenue share on Prime Gaming subs based on historical contract terms.” Clancy went on to say that eliminating the $100,000 cap will “offset this impact, but this will not be true for all streamers.”
Expanding business facets like the Plus Program and removing the earnings cap is likely designed to keep streamers using Twitch. Over the last few years, some of the platform’s biggest creators like Valkyrae, Ludwig, and Sykkuno, have moved over to YouTube Streaming.
The company believes these changes provide the “right structure” for the program going forward.
“Twitch’s long-term success depends upon our ability to help these creators sustain their careers over time,” Clancy said. “At the same time, since our creators depend upon Twitch, we need to ensure that our revenue share structure is designed so that we can sustain the business and Twitch will be here 50 years from now.”