Live streaming format today has become a popular medium for Vloggers, gamers, and other digital personalities to effectively reach to their subscribers by the millions. Seeing the opportunity, YouTube has now introduced a new feature called Super Chat for all the live video streamers and their viewers.
In essence, YouTube's new feature is aimed at helping creators make money while connecting with their fans during a live stream. As for the viewers, the feature will allow them to pay real money in order to have their messages stand out during live streams. Viewers will be able to highlight their message in a bright color and have their comment pinned on the stream. The Super Chat will allow the viewer's messages to be pinned at the top of the chat for upto 5 hours.
According to YouTube's Product Manager Barbara Macdonald, the goal of Super Chat is to help fans reach out to their favorite YouTubers in real time, and vice versa. She also said that creators can look at their messages and prioritize their biggest fans during a stream.
However, the new feature comes in place of the old one: Fan Funding. YouTube had launched Fan Funding in 2014 to let viewers make voluntary payments to support creators directly. But, it never achieved widespread usage. Barbara in her blog has disclosed that Fan Funding will stop accepting new sign-ups. Nonetheless, the feature can be used on enabled channels until February 28, when it will be discontinued permanently.
On the other hand, Super Chat is globally launching in beta version for select users and will roll out more broadly on January 31st for creators in 20 countries and viewers in more than 40 countries.