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Twitch Viewers Can Now React With GIFs

The reason Twitch became popular so quickly is the engagement it offered with viewers. Last year, Twitch decided to enhance that engagement further with what it classed as the “next evolution in livestreaming” through extensions. Almost a year on and Twitch just got an extension that allows viewers to react by posting animated GIFs on a stream.

As TechCrunch reports, the extension is offered by Giphy, the online database of GIFs. The Giphy Twitch extension allows a streamer to select a predetermined section of the screen in which animated GIFs can be displayed. Viewers can then choose to react in real-time during a livestream by posting a GIF.

The extension is meant to further enhance engagement and entertainment during streams, but there are a few rules as you’d expect. Only PG rated or below GIFs can be posted, meaning any with, “violence, sexual references, and lewd terms are all prohibited amongst other things.” The content will also be monitored and removed if it is, “overtly offensive to any race, gender, ethnicity, or community.” Using the extension is pretty simple.

Viewers can click the GIPHY icon present on streams that allows GIFs to be posted. It will then be possible to enter a keyword and a search is performed to present the most relevant GIFs available. Once selected, it will appear on the stream for all viewers and the streamer to see.

While on paper animated GIFs on streams sounds like a good idea, they could end up being a little overwhelming if lots of viewers start reacting with them in close succession.

Twitch will be monitoring how they are used, though, and can tweak the rules and frequency if necessary.

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