Remove mid-roll ads
Cancel the testing of mid-roll ads on affiliate and partner channels. Your viewer base doesn't want this and creators don't want ads playing out of their control interrupting their content
As we announced on Twitter earlier, we have concluded the mid-rolls experiment. Thank you all for your comments and the incredible momentum you’ve contributed to this topic.
There have been many great suggestions, both in this thread and in the Ads forum that we have taken back to the team for consideration. It’s important to know that ads are essential to the future of Twitch, however we want to make things as painless as possible. Please still upvote, share, comment, and create new ideas in this forum so that we may continue to benefit from all of your passionate influence.
I would be very interested in the alternatives outlined here
Is it possible that, instead of running mid-roll ads without the streamer's input, run pip ads in the corner, banner ads, let Twitch users pay a flat $9.99 fee per month to disable mid-roll ads on all channels, etc? Anything except this.
We don't want midgame ads. It's a live stream this is the experience we choose to have. Ads only in the beginning and end of the video.
I use twitch mostly for live play gams like DnD. I entirely supportive of advertising on the platform or other revenue generation, but interrupting live performances is very problematic for me as a viewer. It’s possible I’ll miss something critical.
Mid-roll ads conflict with the culture of live-streaming and detracts from Twitch's main product - a live viewing experience. Forcing an ad regimen (that is frankly obnoxious) upon streamers will hinder the creative process and promote conformity: once unique content now all begins adhering to the same formula. Without getting into the "why I hate ads" argument, here are some solutions I've considered, or seen and heard presented by others over the past couple of days:
- Streamers opt-in to pay a "no-ad" tax from their paycheck to make their channel ad-free for all viewers.
- Viewers pay for a premium on top of normal sub prices for an ad-free experience platform-wide.
- Viewers pay for a separate "no-ad" plan, charged similarly as that of a normal sub. Maybe they earn channel points at a higher rate in exchange.
- That last one sounds a bit like Twitch Turbo. Maybe those site banners I'm about to mention could be put to use to bring Turbo to people's attention.
- Ad banners in dead space.
- Those banner ads that you can close out of inside of the video player.
- Silent ads that occasionally play in a corner of the video player - this could be a form of mid-rolls that would be a lesser evil.
- Front-page video ads.
- Voluntary ad-viewing to give an individual or channel an ad-free experience.
- Voluntary ad-viewing for extra channel points.
- Lean more into ads for bits/TwitchRPG.
- If we're desperate, maybe small banners or interactive ads in the chat box.
- Consolidating the ad regimen: 5 min/hour to disable pre-rolls for the hour. 10 min/2 hours to disable pre-rolls for 2. This encourages PROPER break lengths that are not jarring for streamers or community.
- Allowing streamers to choose what kind of content ads on their channel will show.
- Allowing viewers to choose what kind of ads they want to be exposed to.
Twitch needs to make money, but everyone hates ads. And they're not that profitable unless they're being spammed to huge numbers (preferably targeted). How about, similar to (or instead of) hype trains, cheers and subs can disable ads on the channel for a while? Amount needed to do so can be based on number of viewers.
Interrupting live content with an ad will only serve to sabotage the very reason people show up in the first place. There have been many suggestions that are still front and center but not intrusive to the principle experience. Banner ads on channels (maybe even allow some choice to the creator!), vod ads, front page ads, picture in picture ad that's in the bottom corner with no audio unless clicked on... There's a variety of solutions that can be employed without destroying the experience!
Viewers have already left due to pre-rolls. Now I have to run ads several times per hour and each time, I get to explain to viewers why I'm running them and that I'm not actually trying to milk them for nickels and dimes? This is absurd. Keeping track of ads this frequently is obnoxious, anyway. How about talking to us? How about working with us? There is a point where streamers would be willing to compromise. For example, I'll be willing to take a 5 minute ad break every two hours. Anything more frequent than that is not worth it. As it is, you require ad breaks that are too short to use the bathroom or take a snack break but you require them too frequently to be pleasant. Every two hours. A five minute break. I can deal with that. Otherwise, hello Youtube!
At least give us some control. Most of us take a break at some point in stream to go to the bathroom or get water, let us play the ads when we put up a Be Right Back screen.
Interrupting a stream without input from the streamer doesn't make any sense and ruins the viewer experience. Please roll this feature back.
I understand ad revenue. There has to be a better solution than interrupting a stream. I mean, most streamers have bathroom breaks and such. Give us a run ad button to hit and require so many be run. Or give the streamer a delay button in case something important is going in. I've seen an idea about an ad banner. Please pull groups of streamers and viewers and talk to them! We either stream or consume content. We can help find a win-win solution(s)
From a deliverable standpoint I understand this feature being tested on partner streams affiliated with company contracts, but it is legitimately unfair for anyone who has built their base from scratch or anyone who has no reason to play ads. Please either roll this back or make transparent adjustments moving forward.
Clearly nobody involved in this asinine decision has ever seen any of the charity marathons that have been run on Twitch - especially that feature runs that span several hours at a time (Examples: RPG Limit Break; Square-Enix runs at GDQ events). Not to mention this screws over plenty of individual streamers who also regularly perform several-hour-long speedruns. What's the solution for these instances where there's no "good" time to schedule an ad break?
At least make it controllable by the streamer. Allow them to set up when they want their ads to play. That way TTRPGs, ASMR, creative, etc. can plan for their ad breaks.
This is going to kill the ASMR category in Twitch
I understand that streaming is an immensely costly endeavor and that Twitch needs to make money somewhere; I also recognize that they likely barely break even on subs, bits, etc. considering the sheer power needed to stream so much video at the quality they do all day.
They need to figure out an advertising solution. Mid Rolls aren't it. Do banners, offer a site-specific premium other than Prime that removes ads, put more effort into the "Ads for Bits" thing you have (most of my viewers would love to do it but it's usually not available when they try!)
I'm perfectly ok with viewers seeing ads before seeing my stream. Mid-roll on live content is not the answer though. Sure, if a viewer is a sub and they don't see the ad then that's great, but how many smaller streamers are going to have a massive amount of subs.
I honestly don't want to see it but it might be time to start tooling with the Twitch layout and include banner ads on the streamer's page. Maybe a pop-over the chat every so often but absolutely not a mid-roll that stops the content they are consuming. How about mid-roll ads on VOD?
People are watching to see what happens, not what they missed because an ad played.
It's also up to your team at Twitch to convince people not to use Ad-Blocker software. Give them a reason and I'm not talking about incentives. Having worked in radio for a very long time, I understand the public's outcry against advertising. It's election season right now, some of those ads are intolerable, but like radio, streaming isn't free for the service provider. It's up to you to make the viewers understand that. Turbo was a great idea back in the day.
Give users something in return for watching ads. But for the love of everything good, do not just interrupt the broadcast with ads. Imagine watching an event like a world first raid race in Destiny 2 (my favourite game) and suddenly 90 seconds worth of ads I can't skip so I miss the win?!!
As a creator, I do not like that I'm being forced to punish people who are not subbed to me with uncontrolled ads. And we already know that the data shows the bounce rate during ads is incredibly high. How am I to attract new viewers if they can not see the stream? So I have to run ads to prevent pre-rolls and to prevent unexpected mid-rolls. 90 seconds every 30 minutes which, again, punishes people.
At least give viewers some sort of incentive to watch the ads. I'm not sure if 1 bit per ad is good or if that totally negates the value. But I'd rather you pass the ad revenue on my channel directly onto my viewers in some way.
Please for the love of all streamers and viewers alike, do not add mid-roll ads. I can promise you 100% thousands and thousands more will use ad-block than do already, and you know full well that people are not going to turn it on after the intro ad and then back off when they leave, if it goes on it will stay on. If you have to, use banner ads, or on the side, as long as you don't make the video window smaller by slapping ads in there, the sheer lazyness of the average person to bother getting rid of the ads will win out and you'll still make money.
And if you want to be smart, add in an option to pay for an ad free experience. I know the average viewer can usually afford 4.99 or 9.99 a month, and even though they'd ***** about it, a good percent would be willing to pay to have that ad free experience.
You've heard everyone here.
Creators hate it, viewers hate it, and I think I can speak for everyone when I say that if I get an ad, I either refresh to get rid of it or leave the stream entirely.
This is going to stifle the growth of small channels and heavily hamper the end user experience for everyone. Not to mention the fact that it's going to increase the use of adblock to prevent this nonsense, and drive *down* ad revenue as a whole.
TL;DR: THIS FEATURE IS GARBAGE FOR EVERYONE.