In the current job economy, there are thousands of jobs that can be occupied if the right qualities and applications are met. Well rewarding jobs can be; Financial Analyst, Paramedic, and Statistician where salaries will vary between $30,000-$82,000 a year based on occupation (Martis). Jobs that involve a high level of education are dominantly controlled by millennials. Those that aren’t capable of a higher education; resort to the beginning industry of video game streaming which involves the usage of Twitch and Youtube. This is an ever-growing occupation. Though it is fun to play games and share experiences with viewers, it is not an acceptable career for young adults or millennials.
Before getting into what Twitch and Youtube are; what needs to be understood first is the millennial job economy that has developed in the past few years. Millennials, compared to other generations, are highly educated and have changed the culture and society in America. Diversity in race and gender have greatly been accepted with the millennial generation providing bigger communication between all. According to Kristen Bialik, “millennials are now the second-largest generation in the U.S. electorate (after Baby Boomers), a fact that continues to shape the country’s politics given their Democratic leanings,” (Bialik). The millennial generation is the biggest on record along with their frequent activity in politics; families aren’t started until much later in life where a career in Twitch/Youtube is not okay in this situation.
The economy involving millennials, has developed a gap involving the education of millennials and how it affects careers. The level and quantity of education that has been given, doesn’t give a stronger effect than the depressions that have happened in the early 2000’s (Hanson). The amount of millennials that have a bachelor’s degree (a four year degree from college) has gone up since 1968, “where 39% already have one to date with 43% being women” (Bialik). A drop in those who graduate from high school and are done with their education, is seen with millennials. The percentage of these millennials possibly may be the ones who make Twitch/Youtube a career. “Millennial workers are just as likely to stick with their employers as Gen X workers were when they were the same age… Millennials… 2018 (79%) … working for their current employer at least 13 months,” (Bialik). Most millennials stick to their current active job for five years of their working life where income from jobs is divided among each based on education (Bialik). The education of millennials is mostly lacking even though some do have a bachelor’s degree; but the ones who don’t, seem to be the most likely candidates to work on Twitch/Youtube.
Employment overall has dipped down from 88% to 80% with those who are in their 20’s going from 84% to 72% in the beginning of the 2000’s. Slack labor markets are believed to have the greatest effect on the young adults of today where it is said that it will affect their future wages (Hanson). The income that millennials receive in their households is $71,400 back in 2018 where this generation is known to have more debt, mostly involving student debt. “In addition, the median amount of debt was nearly 50% greater for Millennials with outstanding student debt ($19,000) than for Gen X debt holders when they were young ($12,800)” (Bialik). With so much debt, this may cause many millennials to live with their parents where ones who don’t go to college and build debt are seen as more likely on a 20% to 10% scale (Bialik). Income, debt, and job finding are all affected by level of education, which affects millennials and may cause many to resort to Twitch and Youtube as a way to make money.
To fully understand what some people or millennials go through with the career of live streaming, is to first clarify what Twitch and Youtube are. Youtube as known, is a place for people to post, watch, and like videos. It is free to use and people have the option of subscribing to people to stay up to date on what is new. The amount of hours that are uploaded are 300 hours per minute where all of it is filtered through personnel content restrictions (Webwise.Ie). “Even though streamers are generally more likely to use Twitch to stream, Youtube was the more popular choice for streaming mobile titles” (Jurre). Youtube is also a viable platform to stream live feed on where there are 22,000 people and most stream mobile games (Jurre). Youtube is a successful company on the basis of entertainment, but Twitch surpasses them in certain areas.
Twitch is most known for being a live streaming system where it originally started out as Justin.tv. The site became well known after Ninja (who is most known for streaming Fortnite content) broke streaming records in 2018. Twitch is free to use, but has age restrictions involving the age at which someone can stream. Those under 13 years of age can’t stream and if used by someone between 13 and 18, parental or guardian consent needs to be given. The platform is known for the way viewers and fans can interact and chat with the person streaming. Parentzone points out that, “this relationship is also cultivated by creators in their call-outs of fans and subscribers who interact, often at some financial cost, with their stream,” (Parent). Other media sources question the user interaction of Twitch as the calling out of names and interacting may not seem okay or safe, but is controlled by moderators (Parent). Protection is given to the people who go on the website, but people who have a career in Twitch, have to constantly maintain their chat rooms which can be difficult.
The statistics of Twitch are astonishing and shows how much this growing company has become while competing with Youtube. As Iqbal points out, there were 1.5 million broadcasters and 100 million viewers back in 2015 where the amount grew to 2.2 million and 15 million daily. The amount of minutes watched in 2018 was 560 billion which shows how much people like what Twitch offers and the people who stream on it. Twitch got on top of MSNBC and CNN based on viewers in the first quarter of 2018 where Netflix is the only streaming service that competes with Twitch. “Twitch statistics from SimilarWeb dating from December 2018, show that the US is by far the biggest Twitch market in the world, accounting for over one-fifth of web traffic (desktop),” (Iqbal). Twitch is ever growing due to the thousands of people who make accounts and stream as many are from the US. with Youtube following up behind. This shows how much people put interest into these two platforms resulting in a possible career with those who consume it and that it should not be taken by millennials.
Having to make a career out of Twitch/Youtube is not as easy as it seems; those who are in their early to late 20’s have made sacrifices and taken chances in doing so. This job area is seen as somewhat similar to wanting to be a professional athlete or an explorer and also easy for millennials to make money. The amount of money will fluctuate per streamer based on how entertaining they are during streams and/or videos. Very few have become wealthy from these platforms. According to Mark Fischbach, a successful content creator, says that, “fundamentally, [my life is] not that different from the life I was living before, as I’m still spending the vast majority of my time at home in front of a computer,” (Fischbach). The career doesn’t involve much commuting from home, but results in $12.5 million for Fischbach (mostly known as Markiplier) back in 2018 (Fagan). A basic understanding of money can be made where for every 1,000 views on a single video, someone can make $1 where it can possibly go up (Winters 7). Every video and live stream results in the broadcaster having to do better than last time to draw in a bigger audience. All may not be at the top in the end, making this career not so glorious for most.
Many more aspects of the job come into play when wanting to make money, like how to actually start a Youtube channel as well as a Twitch channel. When it comes to making videos, the creator has to figure out what they can easily do for their videos and more particularly something they know well. Videos have to be uploaded at a consistent rate, but must be of good quality and engagement with the audience of the world or progress won’t be made towards success. Style of video, thumb nail, and anything involving art needs to be unique so that viewers will be drawn in and like the videos that are put out (Winters 12-13). “The mornings usually consist of trying to get to the messages… It is almost impossible now to respond to every single one… takes a good chunk of the day. Since I upload a video every other day, editing takes a big chunk during the middle…,” (Nagzz21). Reading reviews and editing videos are all part of meeting viewer expectations which lead to a better channel. A current consequence of this is considered a “burnout” where the creator is tired from constant work where millennials may experience this if they make Twitch/Youtube a career.
The risks/reward of being on Youtube mostly is seen in other countries, like South Korea. Yoon Chang-hyun, a millennial in South Korea, quit his job at Samsung Electronics (not a day job) to start a Youtube channel. The job he previously had offered triple the average pay, complete healthcare, and other benefits, but built up so much stress causing him to quit. “I got asked a lot if I had gone crazy,’ Yoon said, ‘But I’d quit again if I go back. My bosses didn’t look happy. They were overworked, lonely…’,” (Yoon Chang-hyun). Yoon is a part of the millennials in South Korea who are shifting towards Youtube as a career. A lot are leaving behind white collar jobs which don’t meet the society expectations of South Korea even though they are smart and exceed directives. Millennials moving to Youtube are higher in South Korea due to the ever-growing amount of college students. Millennials are also offered classes that will teach them on how to become successful in the Youtube industry. The idea of having a career in Youtube is bigger in South Korea and is one of the top five dream jobs of 2018 for the country (Kim). Millennials are leading the dream, but to what extent will Youtube be successfully profitable for this specific generation.
The actual lifestyle while building a career on Twitch is slightly different than Youtube as it takes the willingness of the broadcaster to share everything happening live. When making a career out of streaming, the person streaming needs to be smart and have a good work ethic because the paycheck will fluctuate. Ray Narvaez or BrownMan left his job at Rooster Teeth to stream on Twitch where he was drawn by the ability to chat with viewers instead of replying. “While there is no limit on how much you can make on Twitch, there is also no safety net of ‘this money is guaranteed’,” (Narvaez). There is no solid amount of money to be made streaming and making money comes from many sources like subscriptions, tips/donations, advertisements, merchandise, and bits which are micro transactions on Twitch (G. Clay). Subscribing goes from $4.99 to $24.99 where bits follow something similar, but for a streamer to make money from these two sources, they have to become partnered with Twitch (Parent). Some Twitch streamers still have part-time jobs to make money like Leah or LeahLovesChief on Twitch, who has a part time job as a videographer (G. Clay). This industry results in an average salary of $59,040 in the realm of television, motion picture, and video editing where millennials make up 37% of it (Monster). Money is still consistently made with those on Twitch even though subscriber numbers fluctuate per day, but some people, like millennials, do this for a job because of the attention and interaction.
When it comes to the impact of Twitch and Youtube on the world and the gaming industry, it is astronomical as Twitch provides much support for beginning games, the live-streaming industry, and eSports. To begin with the impact of Twitch, Twitch itself was bought by Amazon in 2014 after it had built statues for one billion dollars. It is now one of the top viewed websites as it impacts the marketing, reviewing, and so on of the gaming industry. Games that have built up because of all the streamers on Twitch are Rocket League, H1Z1, and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. What is done on Twitch creates a third world community because of the content streamers put out and how so many consume it more than other information from other sources. “ … print media and linear television continues to decline, particularly sharply within the younger age brackets… the 11-24 age group, only half of all video content is now consumed via television… Twitch represents a media phenomenon through which ‘anyone can become a TV provider’,” (Johnson). Twitch has become more than just a source of entertainment, but also a way to watch things that may be more interesting to someone’s passion. It is also a way for younger people or millennials, to review and advertise games for what is called ‘a living.’
Twitch has grown more not just because of more streamers and viewers entirely, but the developing impact it has on the live-streaming industry and eSports. As Twitch is known for gaming, it has built up more in its content due to a lack of game streaming. These kinds of streamers have become drawn in by Twitch due to its popularity and the support of Twitch Studios which helps beginning streamers. Those who already are streaming and streaming games, may start to use “Just Chatting” which is a platform for streamers to just talk to their viewers (Amrita). ESports on the other hand, has been using Twitch to draw more people into this side of the gaming industry and have used it as another way of making money because those who are in eSports, don’t make much money. “Stream-ing can consist of major tournaments and events, but generally is made up of a single player or team that broadcasts its games and chats, explaining its game style and strategies and giving advice to viewers,” (Edge 34-35). Live-streaming is also used by those who are higher up in the gaming economy where the media revolving around gaming, is mostly controlled by males between 18-34, millennials (Edge). Reviewing, live-streaming, and eSports have all been greatly impacted by Twitch and the services that are provided. It has become a constantly growing industry due to the continuing support by millennials making Twitch their career.
Youtube has had an equal effect on the world as Twitch, but has been around slightly longer and more people use it creating a larger familiarity and bigger impact. As some millennials make a career out of Youtube and focus on fun entertaining content, most shy away from politics and controversies. Most don’t want to get into disagreements with people in the comments section or start to stray in their own opinions (Zanatta 12). Education has also developed further because of Youtube in how people can easily pull up teaching or engagement videos with the click of a button. It has benefitted those who are still in school and those who have an independent life saving them on many scarce resources like time and money and greatly helping millennials (Zanatta 19-20). “As a millennial, growing up in a society of overflowing technology, YouTube culture has impacted media. Through the history and evolution of YouTube… YouTube culture has taken over social media and influenced the younger generations as well as the Millennials,” (Zanatta 28). Millennials have been at the forefront of Youtube growth and influence as this generation was the one to have full access to all the power of the internet. The creating and helpfulness of videos is greatly taken advantage of, where most enjoy this power and decide to turn it into a career causing them to sit at a computer all day.
A career can be anything; from a Bartender to a Statistician, but must provide a substantial amount of money that meets the average wage for millennials specifically, and making Twitch/Youtube a career is not one. The amount of millennials who have a bachelor’s degree has gone up for women, but down for men with the level of education playing a major role in their financial futures. Knowing what Twitch and Youtube is, is important because before going into the realm of content creating, the content creator needs to know everything about it. The actual life of making videos and streaming 24/7 is said not to be easy by several Youtubers and Twitch streamers as it takes a sacrifice. With the growing understanding of this new lifestyle for millennials, it has impacted the world tremendously; culture, entertainment, and information seeking making life too simple for many. Although, some may believe that Twitch and Youtube are acceptable as a career for millennials due to the expansion of the economy in the kinds of jobs there are and how jobs involving technology are increasing. Having a job is something many look forward to in their future. Millennials are the generation dominating jobs currently where all should look for a job that provides a solid salary and service that sustains them until retirement.