The mass exodus from Twitch that streamers have taken part in over the past few months isn't an isolated phenomenon, and fans of content creators currently on the platform will likely find that many more will follow suit over the next few months. The first blow to Twitch was when Tyler "Ninja" Blevins announced he would be departing the platform for Microsoft's Mixer on an exclusive deal that was reported to be worth tens of millions of dollars, and the fallout from that event - including Twitch broadcasting pornography on Ninja's inactive channel - painted the Amazon-owned streaming platform in a negative light.
While Ninja leaving made sense, as he was easily one of the most recognizable streamers in the world and could help become the face of a competitor, many believed his situation to be unique, and not one that would be afforded to the majority of Twitch streamers. Since then , that reasoning has been proven false, at least to a certain extent. When shroud left Twitch, he became the second giant personality to leave, and when Gothalion followed suit, it was proof that content creators didn't just need sheer numbers to be attractive to Mixer, instead focusing on the strength and marketability of their brands. That held true again recently when CouRage, the megastar whose still fairly recent signing with 100 Thieves helped take the esports organization to a new level, announced he was joining YouTube Gaming.
That move was important for two reasons: one, it was yet another Twitch star leaving, but one who had an entire team behind him, a team that could easily begin focusing on his new platform of choice to help support him; and two, it was YouTube Gaming. Mixer was the only platform aggressively going after stars, but after Lachlan signed earlier and then CouRage after, YouTube Gaming solidified its position as yet another option. Now that high-profile streamers are big enough that they can begin to make demands about security and long-term deals, companies like Mixer and YouTube can offer that in order to lock them down into exclusivity deals. It's a win-win for both parties, and it's something that Twitch has been caught sleeping on.
It's not that Twitch likely isn't doing anything now - but it's fair to wonder if it's too late for a lot of big streamers. It's the industry's worst-kept secret that many of these content creators have likely been in talks with major platforms - including Twitch, but also its competitors - over exclusivity deals, probably since Ninja's announcement and even possibly before. Twitch needs to begin making similar deals but also offering big brand deals or partnerships that are incentives for them to remain on the platform, as that seems to be a big draw towards Mixer and YouTube Gaming for the stars that have left currently. Ninja is seemingly everywhere right now, and any major content creator still on Twitch is going to want a deal that gives them the opportunity to do something similar, with consideration for the size of their following.
Until Twitch makes some major moves and locks down a few stars with some extremely desirable contracts, however, it seems fair to suspect that more content creators will be lured away from the platform by the way other competitors are treating their peers. We're just at the beginning of what's sure to be a tumultuous few years as competitors begin to plant their flag in the content creation game, and for now, it appears that will take the form of Twitch bleeding some of its biggest stars.