With the suddenly announced closure of Mixer yesterday, a lot of people were left shocked in its wake. That applies to both employees and streamers on the platform. As news began to spread of the sudden move to Facebook Gaming, folks were left in disbelief. It turns out that the deal had been in the works for months, and that the biggest names bought onto the platform were well aware of it all, and could say nothing.
Ninja and Shroud will likely retreat back to their core audiences on Twitch, with millions in their pockets. Not only were some of the biggest names in the industry paid millions to move to Mixer, but they also got even more lucrative offers from Facebook to move there. Although given that they both negotiated a buyout from Facebook of their remaining contracts with Microsoft, it definitely feels like something is up. If the biggest names in the industry won’t move to a platform, what hope is there for smaller streamers?
Ninja made in the region of $30m and Shroud $10m from Mixer buying out of their contracts, according to esports consultant Rod Breslau, who cited sources claiming “Facebook offered an insane offer at almost double for the original Mixer contracts of Ninja and Shroud but Loaded/Ninja/Shroud said no and forced Mixer to buy them out.”
The smaller streamers were a lot less hopeful and excited over the shutdown news. Many streamers were visibly distraught on-stream when the news broke. Several really didn’t want to go to Facebook, with a variety of reasons cited. Some felt the platform was more toxic, others called it inaccessible to their core audiences. One prevailing sentiment is that the streamers who are now out on Mixer had lost out on the family atmosphere they had built. The reactions from chats were similarly distressed, echoing the feelings of surprise and loss.
As for the employees, they fared even worse. Most would be out of a job, as none of them would transfer over to Facebook. As Microsoft took the best parts of Mixer, like the low-latency technology they had developed, and absorbed it into Microsoft Teams; most employees would either be fired as a few would be moved to other areas. The real kicker is that many had no idea this was coming internally, as employees were seemingly learning of the closure at the same time as the news broke. It’s all just a really bad situation.