Learn how to use Twitch safely. You will find all you need to know about the popular live streaming platform used by gamers and gaming enthusiasts.
Founded in 2011, Twitch is a live streaming platform where millions of users can watch live streams or pre-recorded video gameplay. Other available channels users can watch include music, sports, esports, and food.
Geared towards the gaming community, it also offers gaming news, product announcements, events, and a community of fans who really love games. Additionally, Twitch broadcasts lucrative esports tournaments, which offer large sums of prize money to professional players.
Twitch is available on many platforms, (computer, gaming console, and tablets, mobile devices via a desktop browser and the app) but the official website is www.twitch.tv.
A user can set up a Twitch account to watch their favourite streaming channels or can set up their own channel.
As a viewer, you can – watch live gameplay or archived videos by browsing various categories. A Twitch broadcast or stream often includes a video with an audio commentary from the player and the video of the game itself.
You will also see a live chat option where at times the streamer can respond, but you can still talk to others including sending private messages. Sometimes the streamers respond to the chats out loud in the video.
To gain the full experience (including joining in live chat) you will need to sign up for the free membership where you will get your own user page (called a channel). Viewers can either follow their favourite streamer for free or subscribe to their channel for a fee – from $4.99 a month.
As a streamer you can – create a channel and broadcast live gameplay, esports, music, or IRL (in real life) content. IRL is designed for users to share glimpses into their day-to-day life.
Streamers can also earn money from the platform.
Good to know:
Although an account is not required to use the desktop version (like YouTube and TikTok platforms), by creating a free account, a user can get full access to the features of the platform.
According to Twitch, the minimum age rating is 13 years and a user between 13 and 18 years old should use the platform with an adult, according to the site’s terms of service.
Any under 13s found to have an account will be terminated. The Apple App Store has a rating of 17+ and the Google Play Store has a ‘Teen’ rating.
Check out our Twitch parental controls guide where we show you can block or report a user, disable gifts, and more. In addition, you can also use the settings on your mobile device or computer to further limit interactions and location-based information.
See articles and resources to help children stay safe online.