Twitch star Ali ‘Myth’ Kabbani signs exclusive streaming deal with YouTube
YouTube is on a streamer acquisition roll this month. After landing variety streamer Lily “LilyPichu” Ki to an exclusive deal with its gaming arm, YouTube Gaming, the platform also recently poached live streamer and professional Fortnite player Ali Kabbani, better known as Myth, from Twitch.
Myth confirmed the news in a video posted on YouTube, where he also addressed multiple reasons behind the move, such as quitting pro gaming for being a full-time live streamer to growing beyond his streaming career.
Speaking to J. Clara Chan of The Hollywood Reporter, Myth explained that he wanted to be more entertainment-oriented with the Google-owned platform.
“I’ve kind of had this shift of being a professional gamer and being like this dedicated, sweaty gamer kid, to being someone that’s a bit more entertainment-focused, that has a personality, that’s willing to show up to events and be a personality for people and for the stream and for the audience. All while still, of course, being able to perform in games as well,” Myth said.
Streaming history, moving to YouTube Gaming
Myth created his YouTube account in 2013, and his first entry to Twitch was only three years after. Despite this, the streamer had witnessed the majority of his growth in the Amazon-owned streaming platform Twitch, recording 7.4 million followers since 2016.
The 23-year-old is famous for streaming titles such as Fortnite and Riot Games’ VALORANT. Both titles have earned him millions of followers and over 158 million views in July last year on Twitch. On YouTube, Myth currently has 4.55 million subscribers.
For Myth, the move to YouTube was not simply about winning games.
“I love games — it’s never going to change. But I think that shift and focus about it not just being strictly about winning games anymore has driven me to feel like like YouTube was the right place,” he said.
“If I’m having a better time making better content, my theory is it’ll be better for people to watch as well.”
Despite moving to a platform that has fewer subscribers count than his Twitch account, Myth remains optimistic that completely hosting his streams on the new platform will reel in both new and returning fans from Twitch. Myth will begin his live stream exclusively on YouTube on Tuesday, July 12.
Streaming platform battle
According to The Verge’s Ash Parrish, Myth’s exclusive deal with YouTube was orchestrated by the same gaming agency, Loaded, which was also responsible for the move of both Benjamin “DrLupo” Lupo and Timothy “TimTheTatman” John Betar to the platform.
Loaded is also a streamer management house whose clients include some of the world’s biggest and most beloved gamers, such as Richard “Ninja” Tyler Blevins, Michael “shroud” Grzesiek, Jack “CouRage” Dunlop, and more.
The Verge noted that Loaded “is threatening” Twitch’s monopoly by pitting video game streaming platforms and tech giants head-to-head. In August 2019, both Ninja and shroud announced their move to Mixer, a new streaming platform competitor under Microsoft. The company ended up shutting down the platform on July 22, 2020.
This time around, the streaming battle is mostly centered around Google and Amazon, with most of the popular streamers from Twitch departing for YouTube. It remains to be seen the reason behind Myth’s departure and other migration of fellow Twitch streamers as their financial terms were disclosed. However, in a report by Bloomberg’s Cecilia D’Anastasio, Twitch’s alleged plans to reduce revenue share for top partners down to 50 from 70 percent could be the reason behind the move.