Here’s Why YouTube's Acquisition of Twitch Might Be A Good Thing

May, 19, 2014: YouTube is apparently finalizing a deal to acquire live streaming video platform Twitch.

YouTube Buying Twitch

Rooting for the underdog and hating on the favorite is what netizens in general and Americans in particular love to do. In the logic of the internet, it's perfectly alright to bash the big tech companies because they always have ulterior motives, while the small indie developer that is selling out for $$$ is the most innocent thing ever.

It's why there was no surprise when unconfirmed news of YouTube's acquisition of Twitch was met with widespread moaning disapproval. As soon as Varietymagazine divulged info that Google's subsidiary has agreed in principle to take over the video game streaming service for $1 billion, a flood of user backlash was a matter of when rather than if.

Without even giving YT a chance, the takeover was branded an evil move on the video hosting site’s part. It was also unanimously decided that Twitch's service is now doomed, and their growing userbase of 45 million set for harder times. In the meantime, no blame was attached to the company that sold itself out for $$$.

The purported billion dollar sale and the subsequent criticism brought back memories of some of the most-derided acquisitions of recent times.

When Facebook bought Whatsapp for $19 billion earlier this year, much fuss was made over what Mark Zuckerburg might do to the instant messaging service. It was made abundantly clear that no major changes to the user experience will be made, but cynics didn't pay any heed to it, so blinded they were by the rage. Three months later, nothing has changed on Whatsapp, and it's just the way it was.

Facebook's acquisition of Oculus Rift was disparaged in similar fashion. Now that it has become apparent that the VR headset will not only fulfill its video gaming promises but do more on multiple fronts, the deal's critics have shrunk in number.

YouTube itself was acquired by Google for $1.65 billion from independent developers. The question remains, did the website's service take a turn for better or worse since its 2006 sale?

The naysayers need to realize that entire reason that made YouTube shell out such a hefty price for Twitch is its growing userbase. To disappoint them with new changes and losing them is not on Google's agenda.

Some will point to the YouTube site and its apps own functionality issues to suggest why this might not be a good thing for Twitch. Others will also take aim at the monopolistic powers the move might give to YouTube over online video sharing, but until it manifests itself into that, critics need to hold their horses and give the new owners a fair crack of the whip.

View Comments

Recommended For You