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Report: Amazon’s Twitch Not Meeting Ad Revenue Expectations

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Topline: While Amazon’s Twitch dominates the live-streaming landscape, a new report from The Information citing people familiar with company financials says it only translated into a modest $230 million in ad revenue for 2018 and a midyear annual projection of $300 million for 2019.

  • According to the report, Twitch was hoping to see ad revenues between $500 million-$600 million in 2019, with the service eventually hitting $1 billion.
  • Partnered streamers on Twitch share revenue from commercials, with the option of running ads at will with the push of a button during streams, but the majority of earnings for top streamers comes from premium subscription revenue that’s shared with Twitch.
  • The same is reportedly true for Twitch, which is now making more off “commerce” like subscriptions; along with its ad revenue, the company is hoping to hit $1 billion in 2020.
  • However, given the top streamers generally get the majority cut from subscriptions, Twitch sees a better profit margin on ads, according to The Information.
  • YouTube, in comparison, is thought to bring in billions off ad revenue alone, and according to Laura Martin, an analyst at Needham & Company, the service as a stand-alone business could be worth up to $300 billion after Google acquired it in 2006 for $1.65 billion.
  • Part of Twitch’s strategy is expanding beyond its gaming roots, with its variety “Just Chatting” category rising 42% to 651 million in total hours watched in 2019, ranking behind only League of Legends and Fortnite, according to analyst firm StreamElements.
  • Twitch remains far away the leader in streaming with 73% of the market share, according to StreamElements, but it’s being chipped away by YouTube (21%), Mixer (3%) and Facebook (3%), all of which have signed major streamers away from Twitch.

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Key Background: Top gamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins set off a bidding war late last summer when he signed an exclusive streaming deal with Microsoft’s Twitch competitor, Mixer. Facebook, YouTube and startup Caffeine have since signed exclusive streaming deals with former Twitch stars. The moves have just slightly ate at Twitch’s substantial lead in the market, but the long-term impact could be substantial. Regardless, YouTube has a distinct advantage over all other streaming platforms.

No matter the content creator, after they’ve finished streaming for hours on end, they’ll generally make 10-20 minute highlight videos to upload to YouTube.

Big Number: $970 million. That’s what Amazon paid for Twitch in 2014.

Further Reading: Take a look at the major streamer acquisitions that took place late last year.

Follow me on Twitter. Send me a secure tip.

I’m the reporter for the Games section of Forbes.com. I previously served as a freelance writer for sites like IGN, Polygon, Red Bull eSports, Kill Screen, Playboy and PC Gamer. I also manage a YouTube gaming channel under the name strummerdood. I graduated with a BA in journalism from Rowan University and interned at Philadelphia Magazine. You can follow me on Twitter @mattryanperez.

Source: Report: Amazon’s Twitch Not Meeting Ad Revenue Expectations

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UN Experts Report 1 Million Species Now Threatened With Extinction

Life on our planet is under serious threat, with biodiversity declining at rates never before seen in human history, according to a United Nations-backed report compiled by 145 experts from across the globe.

The dire outlook comes via the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), established by the UN in 2012, and a panel of over 300 authors who scientifically assessed the state of life on Earth over the last three years. A summary of their findings was presented in Paris on May 6, drawing on over 15,000 sources to deliver a systematic global assessment of our impacts on the natural world — and how this affects the future of humanity.

“The health of ecosystems on which we and all other species depend is deteriorating more rapidly than ever. We are eroding the very foundations of our economies, livelihoods, food security, health and quality of life worldwide,” said IPBES Chair Robert Watson, in a media release.

The collapse of Earth’s biodiversity and ecosystems is not altogether new information, after decades of reporting has shown we’re living through the planet’s sixth major extinction event. That has prompted conservationists and scientists to use terms like “biological annihilation” and “extinction tsunami” to describe the carnage. The new report backs up those claims, showing:

  • Humans have significantly altered 75% of the land and 66% of marine environments.
  • Up to 1 million plant and animal species are threatened with extinction within decades.
  • 680 species, at least, were driven to extinction by humans since the 16th century.
  • 40% of amphibian species, 33% of reef-forming corals and more than 33% of all marine mammals are threatened.
  • A tentative estimate for insects suggests 10% are threatened.

Writing in open-access journal Science Advances on Monday, famed conservation biologist Thomas E. Lovejoy summed the report up with elegant melancholy.

“Eden is gone. While the planetary garden still exists, it is in deep disrepair, frayed and fragmented almost beyond recognition.”

The report finds that the key drivers underlying the destruction are rapid changes in human use of land and sea and the exploitation of natural resources. Similarly, climate change, pollution and introduction of invasive species have directly impacted nature.

Without change, we will continue to drive biodiversity down. The IPBES report shows current goals for protecting the planet and preventing or reversing the effects may only be achieved through a “system-wide reorganization across technological, economic and social factors, including paradigms, goals and values.” The prognosis is grim.

It’s the equivalent of Doctor Strange in Infinity War, contemplating all of the possible futures and finding very few where biodiversity recovers and nature flourishes once again. The challenge is immense and it begins with changing attitudes.

We know that even the deepest point in Earth’s oceans is filled with plastic, that human-induced climate change has already caused species to go extinct and that bee populations are in significant danger, but never have those threads been pulled together before. By highlighting the myriad ways we’re harming the planet, the report is a plea for things to change and yet another stark reminder of the course we currently find ourselves on.

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Source: UN experts report 1 million species now threatened with extinction

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