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With badges for top fans and the introduction of rev-share ads on IGTV, Instagram is following Facebook's push to better reward popular livestreamers
By IQ on 28 May 2020
Instagram has introduced two new features to remunerate creators for their live streams, bringing its increasingly popular IGTV video service into line with parent company Facebook’s Live platform.
In a blog post yesterday (27 May), the company announced a new way for fans to support streamers: Badges, a cosmetic item which, for a one-off charge, will be displayed next to the viewer’s name for the duration of the stream, allowing them to stand out in the comments.
The purchase of a badge will also unlock certain special features, “such as placement on a creator’s list of badge holders and access to a special heart” reaction, according to Instagram.
The introduction of the badge system – which resembles other methods of ‘tipping’ such as Twitch’s cheers and YouNow’s bars – follows Facebook’s announcement last month it is to allow events organisers to charge for access to live streams.
Speaking to the Verge, Instagram COO Justin Osofsky said the badges will initially be priced at either US$0.99, $1.99 and $4.99, with Instagram initially taking no cut of badge revenue (later, a rev-share model will be introduced).
The ad split will be based on an “industry standard” of 55% in favour of creators
In addition to badges, the blog post also reveals that as of next week (commencing 1 June), IGTV will for the first time have advertising – revenue from which will be shared with creators.
“IGTV ads will initially appear when people click to watch IGTV videos from previews in their feed,” the company explains. “The video ads will be built for mobile and up to 15 seconds long. We’ll test various experiences within IGTV ads throughout the year – such as the ability to skip an ad – to make sure the final result works well for people, creators and advertisers.”
According to Osofsky, the split will be based on an “industry standard” of 55% in favour of creators.
However, the “small alpha test” will “not be available for music content at this time”, Facebook – which has no licence in place for livestreaming music – later clarified.
Along with the likes of Twitch, YouTube and more specialist platforms such as StageIt, Facebook Live and IGTV are one of a number of livestreaming services being utilised by the live music industry during the global pause on concert touring.
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