A Novice’s Guide to Mod’ing (or Managing) a Twitch Channel

Background

I currently mod for 3 broadcasters and have only been doing it a few weeks. In that time I’ve already learned a lot and thought I’d share. This blog is about what you can do to enhance the chat experience for your channel’s viewers. As a long time and active viewer of music on Twitch, I’m passionate about the experience created for viewers.

Assumed Goals

Here are 5 goals that I assume you have with your Twitch channel.

You want to minimize workload for the broadcaster

Broadcasters are busy and you want them to be able to focus on what they are doing, not enabling a great chat experience.

You want to increase interactivity with the viewers

Interactivity should lead to a better channel experience, increase retention, and grow your viewership.

You want to enhance the experience for the viewers and make sure it is positive.

Being interactive isn’t enough. You also need to make sure the experience is a positive one and fun for the viewers.

You want other mods to easily pick up where you leave off

If you have joined a channel as a mod, there will be pre-existing bots, commands, and methods. You’ll need to fit into that framework. Also, you may not be a mod forever or be the only mod. So, you’ll want to make sure you leave a clean and easy-to-understand set of tools, methods, and artifacts (e.g. commands).

You want to have fun!

The most important thing is that you have fun as the mod. You’ll want to ensure things are easy to do so you can participate and enhance the chat experience.

Suggestions

Enable BTTV and share with mods.

Why?

Get rid of old commands

Why?

Ensure there is a reason for each bot

Photo by Rock'n Roll Monkey on Unsplash

Make it easy and unobtrusive for mods to manage commands.

Why?

Manage all (or most) commands with a single bot.

Why?

Encourage your broadcaster to add Rewards & Challenges redeemable with points

Photo by Giorgio Trovato on Unsplash

Use Polls

Why?

Use Commands

Why?

Some cool !commands

Here are some fun commands I’ve seen in channels I enjoy. They are all in NightBot format, unless otherwise noted.

Weather

For my location:

$(weather Austin)

SendDrinkTo

This command is pretty fun, because you can customize it to your channel’s personality. They might not be drinkers. I’ve also seen this command as “!cheers” in some channels.

$(user) just sent a drink to $(touser)! HSCheers

Ooops

This command is more of an example. It is fun to have some counter that people can use when the broadcaster does something they do a lot.

$(channel) accidentally wrote the wrong command $(count) times. Oops.

Hosts

I found this command is most easily implemented via StreamElements. NightBot has a limit of 400 characters for their urlfetch command, which is restrictive.

StreamElements: !command add !hosts Thanks to all the users currently hosting: $(customapi.https://api.crunchprank.net/twitch/hosts/${channel}?implode)

BTTV

This is helpful to explain to newbies what BTTV is.

bttv: Sooooo … Are you confused why everyone keeps talking about PepePls … PepoDance … SadgeRain … ABDULpls … CouldYouNot … and catJAM ?? It’s a browser add-on required to see special gif-emotes here on twitch, download and install them from https://betterttv.com/ and https://www.frankerfacez.com/ Mobile phone users can use MChat for Android or PogChat for iPhone!

Trackid

This command is so useful, yet very elusive. Much thanks to @djtaylornorris for sharing this solution. He learned of the method from Atish Mehta. This requires a bit of effort on the part of the broadcaster.

StreamElements: ${lasttweet.TWITTER_ID}

Gettweet

I’d like to see if there are some funny Twitter accounts that would be interesting to have show up in chat. To test this out, I created the !gettweet command. It takes an argument which is the Twitter account and returns their latest tweets. I will try it with accounts like: @AlYankovic, @ConanOBrien, @TheTweetOfGod, @factretriever, @TweetsOfOld, @FunFacts, @WiseyQuotes.

$(1) tweeted: $(urlfetch https://decapi.me/twitter/latest?name=$(1)&no_rts&howlong)

Summary

I’ve only been a mod for a few weeks, but there are so many tools out there that can help improve the chat experience for viewers. I hope this quick blog helps some of you out there! If you have any corrections or ideas for me, please leave a comment below or Whisper me on Twitch!

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Program Director of Product Management in the computer software industry. Skilled in delivering data driven product content using Agile and Lean methods.