Wednesday May 18,2016 :  ONLINE CASINO GAMBLING AS A SPECTATOR ACTIVITY?
 
Streaming technology has added a new dimension to play and promotion.
 
It started with online poker but is now rapidly spreading to eSports and online slot action…the entertainment of watching others play, thanks to advances in technology and some outside-the-box thinking.
 
The successful television coverage of major poker tournaments over the past decade or more heralded a new form of spectator entertainment that has proved hugely popular, and in more recent years the concept has translated to live internet streaming following improvements in technology and capacity on networks like Twitch.tv.
 
There, pioneers like Jason “Jcarver” Somerville are providing polished performances full of information and interest, and a growing number of top professional poker players – and major companies like Pokerstars – have started streaming their own shows, commanding audiences in the tens of thousands.
 
That has in turn encouraged online slots and blackjack fans to start streaming, and at the more established message boards these days readers will find players discussing the merits of streamers with titles like CasinoTwitcher, LetsGiveItASpin, Roshtein, Sodapoppin, CasinoRobot, heatcheck, shaltar and CasinoDaddy.
 
The action has in some cases been exploited for marketing purposes by affiliates and – allegedly – even operators, who are criticised in some quarters for sponsoring ‘fake' action in which the player/s do not use their own cash…a key requirement for streamer purists, it appears.
 
Many charge a subscription or other quid pro quo such as signing up at a casino for the entertainment they provide, and some are called out by eagle-eyed and experienced players when their activity lacks emotion or financial and odds credibility.
 
The tactics for success revolve around interactivity and believability – playing in a manner and with resources that resonate with canny players, who can see through a fake promo in a heartbeat.
 
Becoming a streamer spectator is easy – all you need is an internet browser and moderately good internet connection that can handle streaming video.
 
There's a little more to it for the streamer, who must not only master the technology, but develop a distinctive personal style of presentation that provides interest, entertainment and enough credible action to keep viewers engaged and avoid the cardinal evil of embarrassingly "dead air".
 
Spectators can use chat boxes to comment and generally enhance interactivity, and that means that streamers can come in for criticism, making it occasionally necessary to have a thick enough skin to continue.
 
Online gaming streaming has now evolved to the stage where there are message board sections devoted to the genre, and dedicated television networks like Poker Central are exploiting the trend too.
 
It is clearly a form of gambling entertainment that will continue to expand and evolve in the future, with the more successful and innovative streamers developing significant spectator fan bases.