Hi everyone! Here is the third post in the Twitch 101 series. These series once again are hugely supported by my Patreon, so be viewer or else support is always appreciated. Regardless, these will continue to come for free for aspiring broadcasters and the like.

Again, these posts will be geared and focused on helping you, or people you know, with the knowledge I have. These posts are not designed to get you a six figure salary from Twitch.They are to help you overcome roadblocks, be a better broadcaster, learn things you didn’t know and help yourself.

One of the most infuriating things I’ve ever come across in my channel are people that just seem to stick out like a sore thumb. Admittedly, it bugs me to no end, and then it bugs me that it bugs me even more. It can be a vicious cycle and it can start with just one comment from one person in the chat. Streaming is most unfortunately reliant on ourselves, one chip in the armor and the downward spiral begins.

“Trolls” come and go, and there is scant you can do to sway the fact that someone is having a bad day. But, at the end of the day, that’s all that’s happening. Someone is having a bad day, and you are their outlet. It’s absolutely unfair to you and absolutely unfair to everyone in your channel. Few people enjoy watching messages fly by that should be purged, timed out or banned. You get frustrated at your mods, and then they shotgun ban everyone who so much as mis-steps in your chat for the next hour — This can all be avoided.

If you want a healthy, thriving community and a platform where people can mingle with others unabashed yet not feel judged; You need to establish some foundation first.

Rules – Chat Environment – You

Moderators are your best friend, they will always be your front line of defense, they are your right hand. Picking moderators is sometimes the most difficult thing, but when you find a good one that’s enthusiastic about your channel, empower them. A good moderator will be your best adviser, your second voice and will know what you want before you tell them, some people just know. Your chat will reflect your moderators actions.

But moderators aren’t enough if your rules aren’t clearly defined. I have one simple rule in my channel, one spoken rule and many unspoken — Be a good person. It’s easy enough to be clear and it shouldn’t be misunderstood by any that aren’t inherently terrible to other people. It will always vary from person to person, but rules can either be important or unimportant. Your chat will reflect your rules – or lack thereof.

The most important thing to prevent an undesirable person from ruining your day, is you. Your demeanour on your broadcast is going to influence how many “trolls” you get, and how many people are kind, happy or welcoming. If you’re an angry person, you will get people that want to test your mettle. If you’re a genuine and kind person, maybe not so much, perhaps more. You can never tell what’s going to happen, but as long as the minority is drowned out in your ideal environment in the chat, you win.

Your chat & moderators will reflect you, they will feed off of you. If you’re having a problem with people in your chat, your rules, your moderators, your chat, and you, are the first things you should look at; Not them.

The person you don’t like, isn’t always the problem. Sometimes your judgement of them is.

I’ve found often that the most undesirables I encounter aren’t insulting, but rather testing. People find it fun to test the limits, to see how far they might go until they crack the armour. It’s incessant sometimes and it’s downright fucking annoying.

Sometimes the best way to deal with a “troll” in your channel is not always with a ban, sometimes the best way is to approach them with empathy. Some broadcasters are afraid of banning people; Don’t be. But sometimes we can all get a little too overzealous and lash out on someone making a harmless comment that we took the wrong way — I see this a lot, I do it a lot.

There are the obvious offenders of a ban, while reading this I’m sure you’ve already thought of a few. But then there are those that tip-toe the line between you waiting for them to mess up so you can stop reading their messages. We’ve all been there at least once, some more than others. The easiest way to approach this is to set an example.

What works for me? I exude positivity when I can, and I reinforce community. I emphasize that when somebody disrupts the show or the chat, they hurt the community, not me. I try to set the example of not dismissing the humanity of someone angry or having a bad day by calling them a “Troll”. I confront them as a human being. I ask them to stop, I encourage chat to continue doing what they were doing, I try not to miss a beat. When you dismiss someone as easily as they were a leftover scrap from your last meal, the people surrounding them in the chat aren’t always happy by your vicious and angry words. It always makes me think: “Is that what I am, if I piss you off?”.

When dealing with tens, hundreds or thousands of people, the way you present yourself is key. As my incredible partner Kay has taught me, a little empathy goes a long way.

You set the guidelines. The moderators keep them there. You decide if people follow them.

Thanks for reading!

Jay Brotatoe – @twitchbrotatoe – BroPlays – BrotatoeTV

If you enjoyed this or found this helpful please let me know in the comments! Alternatively if you have anything to add to the discussion or think an edit should be made. 

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