Max Sjöblom /

Posted in category: eSport, streaming

Demographics of video game stream spectators

A previous post here on eSports Research covered a study we conducted in order to find out the video game stream spectator motivations. While that post concentrated on the results, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at some of the descriptive and demographic information related to the survey respondents. The idea of this post is not to analyze why and if certain patterns exist, but rather present this as an interesting piece of information regarding video game streaming.

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Image courtesy of Katherine McAdoo (https://www.flickr.com/photos/o_hai/4784122000/).

Demographic information

If the table is cut off scroll to the right to see more.

Factor (unit) ValueFactor (unit) Value
Gender (%)Male92.3%Employment (%)Student57.12%
Female7.7%Full-time22.45%
Age (years)Average22.94Part-time8.49%
Median22.00Unemployed10.31%
SD5.87Income ($)<10 00056.48%
Education (%)None0.18%10 000 - 29 99921.81%
Primary level8.67%30 000 - 49 99911.41%
Secondary level52.19%50 000 - 69 9995.11%
Upper level38.96%70 000 - 89 0002.10%
90 000 up3.10%

The gender distribution for our data is heavily skewed towards males. This comes fairly close to estimates of the video game streaming audience done by third parties (https://www.quantcast.com/twitch.tv#/demographicsCard). We see that a large percentage are students, with the annual income also reflecting this situation.

As we can see, Finland and some of the Scandinavian countries were overrepresented due to the fact that the research was conducted in Finland and thus spread most effectively through social connections close to the researchers themselves. In general, we see a geographic distribution that is very west oriented, which is not unexpected considering what we know of Twitch and the primary ways with which we collected responses (Reddit & Twitter).

Video game stream service usage

If the table is cut off scroll to the right to see more.

Factor (unit) ValueFactor (unit) Value
Tenure (months)Average22.11Streamers watched per week (n)Average5,57
Median21.00Median4,00
Has streamed (%)Yes38.7SD4,96
No61.3Streamers followed (n)Average26,41
Has account (%)Yes93.2Median10,00
No6.8SD52,08
Hours watched per week (h)Average11,01Is subscriber (%)Yes22,90
Median7,00No77,10
SD12,05

As can be seen, users have been watching video game streams (on Twitch) for quite some time, with the average tenure approaching two years. The majority of users have accounts, even though watching content on the service does not require the creation of an account. However, it does make things more convenient, and allows you access to chat, among other functionalities. A surprisingly large number of people have at some point in time acted as a streamer themselves.