Trump gets on Twitch


The reelection campaign will be livestreamed. US president Donald Trump has joinedAmazon-ownedlivestreaming platform Twitch.

Twitchis best known as a social video streaming platform for gamers but does host other content, including politics.

The verifiedDonaldTrumpTwitch account, spotted earlier byReuters, has just one video in the recent broadcast section so far: A livestream of a Trump rally which took place in Minneapolis yesterday evening.

Alongside the saved video of this broadcast is a growing selection of user generated clips culled from the stream, with titles such as “This is our president.”, “LOL”, “KEK” and “pepelaugh”.

Anotherclip remarks on how a single black man — who’s visible in the top corner of the shot of the audience behind Trump — vanishes as “they zoom him out of the picture”.

Trump is not the only high profile US politician to be taking to Twitch to broadcast campaign rallies in real time ahead of next year’s presidential election.

Democratic senatorBernie Sanders, who is making a pitch to be the party’s presidential candidate, joined the platform a few months ago. And at the time of writing Sanders still has more followers than Trump on Twitch (88,795 vs 37,754).

Over onTwitter,meanwhile — Trump’s go-to social media soapbox for skewering opponents and deflecting criticism, via his preferred medium of theearly morning attack tweet— the president has ~65.6M followers.

So Twitter is very unlikely to be concerned that its highest profile user is flirting withAmazon’ssocial streaming platform. (Though it’s much less clear how happy “Jeff Bozo” will be about Trump getting on Twitch.)

Trump has dabbled with using Twitter’s own video streaming tool, Periscope. But the choice of Twitch for streaming his campaign rallies looks mostly like a case of horses for courses. Periscope is more for on-the-fly mobile streaming, whereas Twitch is a platform built for playing to (and building) a ‘lean back’ audience.

Troll culture also thrives on gamer Twitch. And Trump is of course edgelord of the trolls. Ergo he should fit right in.

With Periscope Twitter has been taking astronger approachto tackling abusive commentsin recent years(and also trying to fightfake and spamcontent) — in line with its stated desire to increase‘conversational health’on its platforms. So it’s probably happy to have dodged a bullet here.

Certainly Twitter CEOJack Dorseyhas more enough flying his way over whatever Trump choses to tweet next.

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