Watching People is Not a Game – Article Review

Screenshot of a Hearthstone tournament (Blizzard Entertainment, 2014) streamed on

Sky LaRell Anderson wrote a article called Watching People IS Not a Game: Interactive Online Corporeality, and Videogame Streams. She used the Grounded Theory Approach in order to study human aspects from digital video games being played(Anderson, 2017.) was using the eighth most internet bandwidth out of all the websites in the world(Keng, 2014). The website was launches in 2011 and is a spin off of another streaming website (Anderson, 2017)

Scholarly interest in gaming audience is just staring to emerge, game audiences usually come from e-sports, or professional videogame competitions(Anderson,2017). and allow the audience to connect to the game players online from anywhere in the world. You can actually be watching a gamer playing a game in Japan from the comfort of your living room that is in the United States. 

Anderson(2017) places the players/streamers into five categories: streamer profile images, streamer labels, streamer video, streamer audio and streamer places. The streamer profile is a picture of the streamer and the streamers name. It is usually in the bottom right corner of the screen. Streamer labels is the description and format of the game being played and if they are playing on a team. Streamer video is the video feed of the player who is playing the game. This allows the viewer to see the streamers movements, facial expression, emotions, gender, race and clothing. Streamer audio allows players and/or announcers to speak to the audience. Streamer places, if a green screen is not used then the players apartment/room is in the background(Anderson, 2017).

There is also a relationship between players and viewers. Chat boxes allow the player and audience a way to communicate while the game is being played. The audience can get feedback from the player almost instantly. Streams will use the audiences name in order to respond to the question or comments being made. Streamers can communicate verbally and non-verbally with the audience through live streaming video and chat boxes.

Anderson(2017) still has questions about this interactive online gaming community. One of the questions is “How do game streaming viewers think or feel about interactive online corporeality on game streaming websites?” I am sure that more questions form scholars will appear as further studies are conducted about streamers and their audiences. The strategies that Anderson discussed in this article state that humans feel a need to insert their identity into what is abstractly digital(Anderson, 2017).

This article opened my eyes to online game streaming. There is more to just watching a video game, you can live chat with the streamer about the game and some games you can actually see the streamer and hear them talk about the game as it is being played.  I have often thought that watching someone else play a game online is not the same as playing the game yourself. It takes out the thrill of the game if you watch someone else play online. I also think a video game is fun if you play them yourself and discover what the game has to offer you as a player. If you watch someone else play the game then you know what to expect and how your should play, you loose the element of surprise. Just my thoughts on game streaming.


Anderson, Sky LaRell. “Watching People Is Not a Game: Interactive Online Corporeality, Twitch. tv and Videogame Streams.” Game Studies 17.1 (2017).

Keng, C. (2014, April 21). Online streaming and professional gaming is a $300,000 career choice. Forbes. Retrieved from July 26, 2017

Wingfield, N. (2014, August 25). What’s Twitch? Gamers know, and Amazon is spending $1 billion on it. New York Times. Retrieved July 26, 2017 from

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