What is a stream team?
According to Twitch, stream teams are a way to “unite and connect streamers.” Often communities of streamers gathered under a shared mission statement or values. Some teams are purely for leisure and friendship, whereas others have goals of networking, education, charity work and more. Each team can vary greatly in goals and accomplishments.
How do you join a stream team?
You have to be invited by the team founder to join their team. When invited you’ll find your invite in the channel settings > featured settings > my teams > accept on your Twitch Creator Dashboard.
Most teams with open applications will create social media accounts on platforms like Twitter to advertise. Teams can be formed for a multitude of different purposes – anything from a team of friends, identity-based collectives, or streamers unified under a cause – like charity streaming or the love of horror games.
How do I know if a team is for me?
Each team will have its own values, goals and founding members. It is important to vet a team to see if it is a good fit for you as a creator. Anytime you associate yourself with an organization, such as a stream team, your brand is on the line too as you may be judged by their actions.
Not only that, you want joining the team to be a mutually beneficial relationship for you and the others on the team. You want to feel comfortable in that space to connect with the others and feel like their goals are in alignment with your own.
Things to consider include when reviewing teams are their:
- Founding members
This will help you get a feel for the team. If you have further questions, do not hesitate to reach out to the teams for more information. You can also always leave a team at any time if you no longer feel like it’s a suitable match for you and your career.
Should you join a team?
In addition to assessing if the team’s values align with your own, you should ask yourself why you’re considering joining a team. Sometimes people join to try and gain notoriety, to connect with bigger streamers, or to try and grow their community.
Teams that are engaging in follow for follow behaviors will not be beneficial for you as a creator in the long-run. You should join stream teams because you’re looking to build community with other creators and not just to gain something from them.
For some teams, there is a time commitment involved with participating in team events or being active within the space. As streamers, burnout and overwhelm can be common so it is important to assess if you have the time to give this space you are a part of because being in a bunch of spaces but being inactive doesn’t benefit anyone.
How do I make my own stream team?
Only partnered streamers can request a team at this time by opening a ticket with Twitch while logged into their Partner account. In this ticket they must include:
- Team Page URL
- i.e., https://twitch.tv/team/teamname
- Team Display Name
- Indicate the Twitch account that will own/edit the team
Partners can only request two teams throughout their career and deleting/transferring the ownership of a team does not allow for further requests.
While only partners can create a team, they can put any account (including affiliates) set to be the own/editor of the team in their request.
This is only the bare bone requirements to set up a team with Twitch. However, it’s important to take time to understand what the process of founding a team can really look like. Helping to manage a large group of creators is a big time and energy commitment on your part.
With only two requests being possible in a streamer’s entire career, it’s important that you have a clear idea of the purpose of your team before you establish and advertise it. You want to have values, goals, and a founding leadership established before you ever invite any regular members.
You will also need to determine how you will decide who is allowed to join your team – whether that is an application process or invite-only process. You want to be transparent on how folks can get involved who might come across your team page and be interested in supporting.
As the founder of the team – you will be responsible for how your team is perceived, which includes the behavior of those you accept to your team. That means that you need to also take your time in vetting the applicants to assure their values align with your team. For popular teams, this can look like yourself and your founding members reviewing upwards of 300+ applications, which is a huge commitment.
What does inclusivity have to do with stream teams?
If your team is being founded on principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion then it is essential that the actions you take demonstrate this commitment. Your founding members should be diverse in race/ethnicity, gender and sexual identity, religion, geography, ability status, and more so that diverse applicants feel comfortable reaching out.
You should also make sure that your advertising materials, application, discord spaces, and more are accessible to disabled applicants. When you accept members, you need to be sure not to tokenize diverse applicants but instead, accept them for their full worth and contribution.
These types of things take time/energy and if you plan to build a stream team built on inclusivity you should have a solid foundation in these concepts. Knowing the basics and being able to uphold these practices are different and you need to reflect deeply on if you’re able to take action. To learn more about upholding diversity in stream teams watch this highlight by stream team founder ChiChi.