If you’ve been a Twitch viewer in the past few years, you’ve undoubtedly heard the bevy of complaints about “Booby Streamers”. “Booby Streamers” as a term is usually used to indicate that a female streamer is using their appearance for personal gain while streaming.
Common complaints about Booby Streamers:
- They’re sluts.
- They aren’t real gamers.
- They’re taking viewers from better streamers.
- They’re using sex to make money.
- They have no real content.
- They’re stupid.
- They’re whores.
- They don’t have any self respect.
- They’re not real streamers.
- They’re breaking the rules.
- They’re making Twitch unsafe for children.
I’m not sure if I’ve got them all and I’m certainly not going to list all the variants of the ones I did list. That’d be a really long list if I did that. While this looks like a significant list, it’s very important to point out that every one of these complaints are unquestionably rooted in misogyny. This become especially apparent once you realize that none of these complaints are logical. Yes, all arguments about “booby streamers” are illogical.
There’s one important thing to remember about Twitch, at no point are you required to watch any streamer. That’s right, you will never watch “booby streamers” without wanting to. Browsing for a new streamer to watch and run across someone you’re not interested in, close the stream. Your favorite streamer raids a stream that you don’t like, close the stream. This is the key to understanding that the complaints about “booby streamers” are purely sexist. No one is forcing anyone to watch any stream, so why complain about something you aren’t going to watch? Complaining about nothing is surely illogical.
Targeted at Female Streamers
You’ll also notice that no one is complaining about male “booby streamers”. There are a few male streamers that literally only stream topless —which is explicity against Twitch TOS— but no one complains about them. They aren’t called “booby streamers”. Yet somehow the majority of female streamers on Twitch has at some point been called a “booby streamer”. It’s almost been turned into the defacto war cry against female streamers.
The arguments against “booby streamers” consistantly use insults that have been used primarily against women for as long as we can remember. It’s not a coincidence that “booby streamers” are called slut and whore, sexually based insults used to degrade the value of a woman for centuries. To further degrade the value of a woman’s contribution, the offenders proceed to devalue the actual content of the streams by making broad claims of unimportance. You’ll note that “booby streamers” are streaming the same things male streamers do. For some reason when a woman does it, it’s not “real”. I’m not sure how that makes any sense because by doing it, it becomes real. That’s more of the illogical argument.
Facts Don’t Support the Claims
Complaints that “booby streamers” are taking viewers away from better streamers aren’t supported by the facts. The overwhelming majority of top viewed and subbed channels are male streamers. Nine of the top 10 subbed streamers are male and the outlier being Critical Role which is primarily a male cast and hosted by a male. Total views, viewership, all time peak, followers, it doesn’t matter because every single category is dominated by male streamers. This should be ample evidence that viewers are not letting “booby streamers” get in the way of finding the content they want, assuming what they want are male streamers.
The problem here of course comes to the misogynystic viewpoint that even when a minority of a collection is female, men still wrongly perceive that women are the majority. Follow this link for an article about that subject, which also has a bunch of informative links within to more on the subject. An argument citing facts which counter the claim can only be illogical.
Misrepresenting Streaming Content
Always we see men proclaim that “booby streamers” are dressed inappropriately. This claim is made regardless of what the streamer is actually wearing. I’ve personally been witness to “booby streamer” insults being slung at a woman wearing a turtleneck with no cleavage showing at all. Further, the outfits that are being worn on Twitch are just regular clothes, like t-shirts, tank tops and sweaters, the same kind you’d see a person wearing while doing literally anything. Yet we again hear the cry that these outfits are breaking the rules because they are sexually suggestive.
The Twitch TOS says that any “attire that would be publicly appropriate for the context, location, and activity they are broadcasting” is acceptable. They further give the examples “workout clothes would be appropriate for a fitness stream and a swimsuit would be appropriate for a stream from a public beach”. So Twitch says, regular clothes are okay and sometimes a bathing suit is okay. Twitch even offers a “body painting” tag and regularly has people performing that kind of art because Twitch says it’s okay to do.
So why do we hear the complaint that these streamers are selling sex or nudity in order to profit, possibly even at the expense of children? There’s a well known history of painting any woman as using their body to advance instead of on their own merits and this is no different. It’s yet another illogical argument that just doesn’t align with the facts.
A Logically Illogical Argument
I’ve pointed out how plainly illogical the arguments towards “booby streamers” are across the board, yet it strangely all makes perfect sense. The dislike for “booby streamers” isn’t about some grand violation other than for women to dare to be seen to be successful. When you take away every leg an argument has to stand on —not that there was a leg to begin with— the argument becomes purely emotional. There is no offense being committed here. This is just one more facet of misogyny rearing it’s ugly head. Again, there’s no reason that “booby streamers” deserve any of this because clearly there is no logical reason for it.
If there is no reasonable argument to be made, the person making the argument is unreasonable. If you find yourself making the argument then you are unreasonable. If you take issue with “booby streamers”, you need to reflect on why YOU are behaving unreasonably. I’ll give you a jumping off point: misogyny.