Twitch Raises Eyebrows With Game Store, Giving Streamers a Share Of Purchased Games

Twitch.Tv is capturing headlines today with its announcement of a Twitch Game Store and rewards program available both online and on the Twitch desktop app. The store will differentiate itself from the likes of Steam by offering Twitch Crates to those who purchase games or items that cost more than $4.99.

Another feature: Twitch streamers can opt-in to a system that will give them 5% of the profits if someone purchases a game using the "Buy Now" link on their channel. You can see this below:

Now, I don't think anyone will be too upset about streamers trying to make an extra buck or two, as making a living wage out of the profession requires an inordinate amount of time that can and has led to serious health problems.

That being said, Twitch has also just given streamers a vested interest in a game's success, which has raised the eyebrows of more than a few Twitch viewers who wonder whether or not they will be getting accurate information about a game's quality now that this avenue for profit exists.

While not similar on a legal scale, this underlying question is the same as it was when Streamers who owned in part Counter-Strike: Global Offensive skin-betting websites told viewers how great said websites were without properly disclosing this conflict of interest. Again, this isn't nearly the same scale, and it doesn't have any legal ramifications, but Twitch viewers have shown time and time again that they want fair coverage of games, and some feel that giving streamers a cut of a game's profits will threaten that.

On the other hand, Twitch isn't primarily used for people who don't know whether or not to purchase a game. Many people who watch games on Twitch already own the games they watch. Regardless of who's right, the Twitch Store is up and running, and we'll just have to see how it progresses.