We saw that since the lockdown, the number of users on the Twitch streaming platform has increased significantly, paving the way for a newbie and larger audience. And with this massive influx of new users, so too have new types of content emerged, such as “hot tub streams” which could be translated as “SPA streams” in French. Small explanation of this phenomenon that has nothing to do with the well-being of our favorite animals.
When summer is desired
The trend, although it really did emerge last year, took hold in March of this year. We saw more and more live streamers in bathing suits in hot tubs talking to their chat. After all, hot tubs are for those who have the funds, the classic inflatable garden pool is very popular in this type of content too. That’s it, a simple, effective formula, but one that is becoming more and more controversial on social networks.
I’ll be honest, this META hot tub is by far the most pathetic thing we’ve ever seen on TWITCH forever. What a sad reality. PLEASE RECEIVE THIS WASTE FROM THE FRONT
April 19, 2021
I’ll be honest, this hot tub meta is hands down the most pathetic thing we’ve seen on Twitch. What a sad reality. Please remove this waste from the homepage
And many agree with Felix “xQc” Lengyel, Twitch’s # 1 streamer. Many other streamers and viewers on the platform made similar claims, showing just how bad a condition they believed was Twitch.
This new @Twitch update with the hot tub meta is about OP. Please patch this asap.
April 23, 2021
This new Twitch update with the Hot Tube meta is about OP. Please correct it as soon as possible.
How can girls wearing bikinis and riding bananas in hot tubs stream that shit on twitcchhh?!?! Wtf are these standards …
April 16, 2021
How can girls in bikinis riding bananas in hot tubs broadcast that shit on Twitch?!?! What are these standards …
To fully understand the context, you should know that this type of content does not violate the rules of the platform. Twitch’s general guidelines state that you must have an outfit that matches the location you are streaming from. So we can understand that if we are streaming in a gym we can wear sportswear, or if we are streaming on the beach (or in an inflatable pool, for example) we can be in a bathing suit. And some understood that very well.
Despite criticism, the Whirlpool meta on Twitch meets the community guidelines at first glance. The most important and very fuzzy line to cross is whether the content is sexually suggestive. Twitch loosely defines what that line is, but leaves it open enough to be subjective
April 20, 2021
Despite all the criticism, the Whirlpool meta on Twitch meets the community guidelines at first glance. The passable line, while very vague, relates to the question of sexually suggestive content. Twitch loosely defines this limit, but leaves it open enough to be subjective.
The opinion of those affected
Unfortunately, while there are many aspects of this phenomenon that could be criticized, much of the conversation around the topic has focused on what women can and should not wear while streaming. Others also express concern that these streams are robbing viewers of more deserving streamers. For Kaitlyn “Amouranth” Siragusa who was part of this trend and one of the most popular streamers on Twitch, she told Kotaku:
This meta whirlpool is like a Rorschach test on Twitch. People extrapolate their own agenda onto the meta. There are two recurring topics that people keep coming back to: 1) Twitch is all about video games, or 2) Twitch is unfair to male streamers, or vice versa, Twitch is more forgiving of female streamers.
“I’ve been on the platform and playing for three and a half years, but my main thing is hula hooping and cosplay,” shared Spoopy Kitt, another streamer whose popularity has grown significantly. Thanks to SPA he has increased streams. “I’ve gotten hateful comments on all of this. Some people will find a reason to tear you down. Just do what you do, you can’t make everyone happy. […] I think people like to look at pretty women in bikinis, and I like being in a hot tub and making memes, so it’s a win-win situation. “
And in fact, people seem to appreciate it! Since the end of March, Siragusa has gained almost 500,000 followers. Indiefoxx, the second largest streamer to broadcast this type of content, won nearly 300,000. Others like Spoopy Kitt didn’t make such impressive jumps, but they still attracted tens of thousands of new viewers in just a few months.
Hence, contrary to popular belief, Amouranth believes that this trend could do more good than harm to Twitch based on the numbers.
The data shows that viewers stay for games and other activities as well. I can now play games or just sit at my desk with 10,000 people watching. I envision Twitch seeing a massive influx of people from outside the platform, people who are likely to become repeat viewers. Marketing like this is hard to buy. The meta creates a lot of sharing and arouses people’s curiosity. I think the argument that this is taking viewers away from other makers is wrong and that the girls who indulge in the hot tub are pioneering to increase the total number of viewers on the platform?
And although some are trying to find ways to make bath time interesting, like Siragusa now hosting podcasts there, this phenomenon doesn’t stop this phenomenon from asking real questions.
An alarming trend
First, let’s get one thing straight. These women have every right to do what they do, and it is not for everyone to judge them on purely subjective criteria dictated by a morality that is even more. However, some argue that criticism is open to what space they have chosen to indulge in this practice, unsuitable in many ways.
First, Twitch basically wants to be “kid-friendly” and is therefore suitable for children. Can we really agree that sexually stimulating content for children is so readily available since the platform is accessible from the age of 13?
Then it sends a bad picture from streamers in general actually connected to this type of content. And because of this, more and more female streamers are facing inappropriate requests or suggestions. The latter therefore accuse these girls of having standardized this and attracted these people to the platform, people who were probably previously on other platforms planned for this purpose.
Yeah, folks who watch me aren’t the type into hot tub streams anyway. It’s just disgusting to see the recommended ones every day
April 20, 2021
Yes, the people who are watching me [normalement] aren’t the type to get into SPA streams anyway. Just horrible to see this on recommended channels every day
And if we take the argument further, we can safely say that this type of content is unfair competition to camgirl websites which are websites that specialize in such content. The fact is, even some actresses in the adult film industry represented on the streaming platform are surprised that streamers create such content and sexualize themselves so much on a platform that is not geared towards it.
Finally, all of this controversy sheds light on an issue that is more systemic than cyclical: the inconsistent application of the Twitch rules. Recently, it has been observed that more and more sexually stimulating content is appearing on the streaming platform and that the penalties imposed are increasingly mocking. Where just a few years ago many streamers were banned for much less, Twitch’s transparency problems seem more than ever to be one of the platform’s biggest weaknesses. Especially since these streamers are Twitch partners and are therefore recognized and advertised by the platform itself.
But while they wait for Twitch to manifest itself in the phenomenon and take action, some intend to take advantage of the breach.
I hear whirlpool streams are the new meta so maybe I should start taking advantage of this free paper. If it’s making money it makes sense pic.twitter.com/Es52B5W4yI
April 19, 2021
I heard that whirlpool streams are the new meta, so maybe I should start taking advantage of these free tickets. When it makes money, it makes sense. “