Why Do People Watch Others Play Video Games? An Empirical Study on the Motivations of Twitch Users
29 Pages Posted: 13 May 2016
Date Written: May 13, 2016
This study investigates why people consume live peer-produced online videogame content, an emerging form of new media phenomenon. To study this video streaming phenomenon we employ a questionnaire study (N=1097). Utilising the uses and gratifications theory we examine five distinct types of motivations: cognitive, affective, personal integrative, social integrative and tension release. We find that tension release, social integrative and affective motivations are positively associated with how many hours people watch streams. We also find that social integrative motivations are the primary predictor of subscription behaviour. This study lays groundwork for understanding the motivations to consume this emerging form of new media related to online games and video streams.
Keywords: streaming, uses and gratifications theory, games, Twitch, eSports, media usage
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