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Twitch Streamers Raise Hundreds Of Thousands Of Dollars To Fight Australian Bushfires

Illustration for article titled Twitch Streamers Raise Hundreds Of Thousands Of Dollars To Fight Australian Bushfires
Image: Loserfruit

Australia is on fire. Thousands of homes have been destroyed, countless people have been displaced, and 24 people have died. More than 15.6 million acres of land have burned. All this, and Australian summer is only just beginning. With the government failing to act against the blisteringly obvious effects of climate change, some streamers are doing their best to help.

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In recent days, a handful of streamers have directed charitable efforts toward the ongoing disaster in Australia. Most notably, Australian streamers Loserfruit, Fasffy, and Crayator led the charge earlier this week with a marathon stream that started with a goal of $15,000 AUD, only to blow past it in under an hour. A multitude of guests joined the stream, including Brodie, BazzaGazza, GraceWatkins, Lazarbeam, LivBevan, Marcus, MrWoofless, Mully, Muselk, and Tannar—most of whom also hail from Australia. They ended up extending the stream to 36 hours, with streamers taking breaks as needed. They spent their time talking, accepting dares from chat, watching videos of the fires, and discussing their effects. They also did shoeys, a time-honored Australian tradition in which one drinks beer from a shoe.

In the end, the stream pulled in $318,511 AUD, or around $220,000 USD, all of which will be divided between the NSW Rural Fire Service, the Australian Red Cross, and Wires, a wildlife rescue organization. Significant chunks of that total came from popular non-Australian streamers like Dakotaz, Trainwreck, Pokimane, VikkStar, Corinna Kopf, and xQc. Some have also spearheaded their own fundraising efforts, with Pokimane imploring fans on Twitter to donate and promising to follow anybody who does so.

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Other streamers have also put forth their best efforts. Former Overwatch League player Scott “Custa” Kennedy managed to pull in over $10,000 AUD for Australian fire services, while Australian streamer PaladinAmber, who repeatedly went viral last year with broadcast news-style clips of herself calling out men who said disgusting things to her on stream, hosted a fundraising stream of her own and pulled in $5,000 AUD, which she donated to the Rural Fire Brigades Association Queensland. She also made a special breaking news segment for the occasion.

“Are you thirsty?” PaladinAmber said. “Well so is our fucking country... When a whole country is burning and no one is doing anything about it or speaking about it and it still won’t make national news, I like to think that maybe I should take matters into my own hands and do the news, you know? So here it is: Help. Australia’s on fire. Our prime minister won’t do shit about it. Send some help. Do something. Talk about it. Get your rich friends involved. Donate to the people who are fighting the fires. It’s a lot. We’re on fire, and it’s only just begun summer. Help.”

Kotaku senior reporter. Beats: Twitch, streaming, PC gaming. Writing a book about streamers tentatively titled "STREAMERS" to be published by Atria/Simon & Schuster in the future.

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DISCUSSION

nashebazon1
Nashebazon

Really stupid question incoming.

What do donations in this context actually pay for? More firefighting staff? More equipment to fight fires? What are my dollars actually going to?

I really want to help, but I get super nervous about donating to en vogue causes, because there are nefarious groups out there that use people’s kindheartedness to scrape cash from donation gold rushes.