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Twitch introducing Stories and Discovery Feed to boost offline community interaction

Announced at TwitchCon Paris.

Twitch is introducing a new Stories feature, providing streamers with a further way to reach their followers when not livestreaming.

Stories will last for 24 hours and appear on the Twitch mobile app, similar to other social media platforms.

The news was shared at this year's TwitchCon Paris event, along with other new features joining the platform.

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Stories will launch in October and be covered by the Twitch Community Guidelines to ensure streamer safety.

Another forthcoming feature is the Discovery Feed: a scrollable feed in the Twitch app consisting of short streamer clips, whether a streamer is live or not.

The aim is to improve discoverabilty on the platform, as viewers can easily scroll through to find new streamers. As such, streamers will be able to tag their clips as a favourite, which will be prioritised in the Discovery Feed.

Alongside this, the clip editor will be improved, including access via mobile and the ability to export clips directly to rival platform TikTok.

Many of these improvements are designed for mobile first, but Twitch isn't aiming to be a complete social media platform.

"We're not building the Feeds to compete with TikTok, we don't want to build a platform where people just come and consume the feed for an hour a day," product VP Jeremy Forrester told Eurogamer.

"We want to utilise things like short form content and UX that people are familiar with in order to help streamers grow their live stream community. For us livestream will continue to be the heart of everything that Twitch does.

"Lots of streamers have to actively encourage their Twitch viewers to go follow them on other platforms so they can continue to communicate with them. We're going to provide a more rounded solution," added Forrester.

"But it's not a move for us to compete with Instagram on Stories, or compete with TikTok on short form video. We want to help augment streamers' livestreams and help them engage with their communities."

Other additions were also announced during the event's keynote speech.

Advertising on Twitch has been a contentious topic for some streamers, with ad breaks often overly intrusive. A new feature arriving later this month will show an ad countdown in the chat box, warning both streamer and viewers that an ad is incoming. What's more, this can be snoozed or pulled forward if the time is inconvenient - during chat or key gameplay, for instance.

Another update is the ability for moderators to share comments with each other on why an account is banned. This builds on shared ban information and is an extra way for moderators to ensure streamers stay safe.

The recent Alerts feature will now be integrated with Shield Mode, meaning streamers can prevent inappropriate alerts from popping up (such as during a hate raid) by activating this mode.

Lastly, an update to Guest Star will allow streamers to collaborate and stream together. Up to five streamers will be able to join together, while simultaneously live on their own channel.

With recent updates, Twitch is catching up to third-party tools and solutions, but Forrester assured Twitch's integrated solutions have a safety-first approach.

"When we look at something that exists in the third-party and decide whether we want to bring it in to be first party, we really want to focus on can we bring more value to streamers?" said Forrester.

He continued: "For better or worse, I think the community often complains that we're slowly building things, and a lot of it is because we want to make sure we're building things with safety in mind.

"We operate with the mindset of safety by design, which is as we're building the new product, we have to be thinking about safety first."

For more on Twitch updates announced during TwitchCon Paris, visit the Twitch Blog.

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