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Facebook Adds New Monetization Tools for Gaming Streamers

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Facebook has announced some new monetization options for gaming streamers, as it seeks to maximize opportunities for creators heading into the holidays season.

And while the updates are specific to Facebook Gaming at present, they may also be extended to live-streams more generally in future, providing more ways for all creators to make money from their Facebook Live efforts.

First off, Facebook’s launching a new promotion for the holidays which will see Stars, the donation stickers that users can allocate during a stream, offered for reduced prices. 

Facebook Stars

Users will also be eligible to receive a unique badge for sending Stars, and will have access to a limited time Hand Raise virtual gift option. The promotion will end on January 1st, giving users two weeks to use tap into the limited time offer, which could prompt increased Stars usage.

Facebook’s also adding a new, larger display option for those donating higher Star amounts, which will provide more visibility in the chat stream. Bigger donations will also be pinned to the bottom of the chat window for a period of time.

Facebook Stars

And lastly, Facebook’s also launching a new set of animated virtual gifts, which can be purchased with Stars, providing even more visibility during a stream.

Facebook Stars

I mean, they’re expensive – that rainbow cloud animation costs 10,000 Stars, which is equal to over $100, depending on how you purchase them (with the prices reducing the more you buy at once). So you’d have to really support the creator, and/or really want them to notice you. But for dedicated fans, it could be a good option to show your appreciation, and provide some additional monetary reward for their work.

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And as noted, those tools could, eventually, be extended to all live-streamers. Facebook first launched Stars with gaming streamers only, before extending them to more Pages and creators in June this year, in order to provide additional income opportunities for performers who’d lost opportunities due to COVID-19 closures. 

It seems likely that these additional tools, if they prove successful, will also be made available to more streamers in future – so even if you’re not a gaming creator, it could be worth noting for future opportunities.

Amid the pandemic, live-streaming has had something of a resurgence, with Facebook reporting that the number of people in the US watching Facebook Live-streams increased by 50% throughout the year. That’s sparked new potential, and with the increased capacity to monetize your live broadcasts, it seems likely that more big-name stars will be looking to the option to supplement their income. Which could bring more viewers, and more opportunity for smaller players as well.

It’s still not a major element, but as Facebook continues to push its video tools, live-streaming could still become a bigger thing, and new additions like this will help provide even more opportunity.   

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New Screenshots Highlight How Snapchat’s Coming ‘Family Center’ Will Work

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New Screenshots Highlight How Snapchat's Coming 'Family Center' Will Work

Snapchat’s parental control options look close to launch, with new screenshots based on back-end code showing how Snap’s coming ‘Family Center’ will look in the app.

As you can see in these images, shared by app intelligence company Watchful (via TechCrunch), the Family Center will enable parents to see who their child is engaging with in the app, along with who they’ve added, who they’re following, etc.

That could provide a new level of assurance for parents – though it could also be problematic for Snap, which has become a key resource for more private, intimate connection, with its anti-public posting ethos, and disappearing messages, helping to cement its place as an alternative to other social apps.

That’s really how Snap has embedded its niche. While other apps are about broadcasting your life to the wider world, Snap is about connecting with a small group of friends, where you can share your more private, secret thoughts, without concern of them living on forever, and coming back to bite you at a later stage.

That also, of course, means that more questionable, dangerous communications are happening in the app. Various reports have investigated how Snap is used for sending lewd messages, and arranging hook-ups, while drug dealers reportedly now use Snap to organize meet-ups and sales.

Which, of course, is why parents will be keen to get more insight into such, but I can’t imagine Snap users will be so welcoming of an intrusive tool in this respect.

But if parents know that it exists, they may have to, and that could be problematic for Snap. Teen users will need to accept their parents’ invitation to enable Family Center monitoring, but you can see how this could become an issue for many younger users in the app.

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Still, the protective benefits may well be worth it, with random hook-ups and other engagements posing significant risks. And with kids as young as 13 able to create a Snapchat account, there are many vulnerable youngsters engaging in the app.

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But it could reduce Snap’s appeal, as more parents become aware of the tool.

Snapchat hasn’t provided any further insight into the new Family Center, or when it will be released, but it looks close to launch based on these images.  

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