It isn’t just Mixer that is looking to snatch away Twitch’s biggest stars.
100 Thieves content creator Jack “CouRage” Dunlop has announced that he is leaving Twitch behind to exclusively stream on YouTube. The announcement was made on his YouTube channel in a video featuring other 100 Thieves personalities.
This continues what has been a rough year for Twitch, as the streaming giant has been marred by repeated controversies and the departures of some of its biggest names.
A major story over the last few months has been competing video game streaming platforms luring away popular personalities from Twitch. This phenomenon began shortly after the Fortnite World Cup, with Tyler “Ninja” Blevins signing an exclusive contract to stream on Microsoft-owned streaming platform Mixer. More recently, former Counter-Strike: Global Offensive star Michael “shroud” Grzesiek revealed that he was making a similar move to Mixer.
What raises an eyebrow with CouRage’s deal is that he is moving to YouTube.
Though YouTube stands as the largest video streaming platform in the world, it has not yet been able to really establish itself as a live streaming site as of yet. Google has made many efforts to change this ranging from improving video quality and acquiring the exclusive broadcast rights for prominent esports events, but fans still primarily go to Twitch for these purposes.
YouTube did make an attempt at popularized its YouTube Gaming streaming service, but it was met with mixed reviews.
This all gives this announcement the appearance of YouTube taking a page out of Mixer’s book.
These moves have not yet paid off for Mixer. Last month, analytics showed that Mixer had actually lost ground on Twitch despite the acquisition of Ninja. Offsetting this was that Ninja did popularize Mixer as a viable platform for new streamers looking to get started somewhere fresh.
Regardless, this could prove problematic for Twitch.
CouRage is a content creator for 100 Thieves, an esports organization that fields a League of Legends team in North America’s LCS and recently restarted its CSGO division with the acquisition of the former Renegades roster. CouRage signed with the organization in May.
Primarily a Fortnite streamer, he has a significant following across social media including 2.1 million followers on Twitch and 1.1 million on Twitter. His YouTube following before the deal was made was over 1.8 million subscribers, with his videos typically getting between 200,000 and 500,000 views but sometimes peaking into the millions.
CouRage will remain a part of the 100 Thieves organization.
According to esports journalist Rod Breslau, the deal between CouRage and YouTube was brokered by talent firm Loaded. Loaded represents CouRage, shroud, and Ninja. Given that they have facilitated the exodus of many content creators, it seems likely that more clients could be headed out Twitch’s door.