It initially piggybacked off of Twitter, but was quickly cut off, likely because Twitter has its own plans for a live streaming service built around a company it just acquired, Periscope.We’ve finally hit a tipping point where live streaming makes sense, both as a killer feature on a platform like Twitter, but also as a standalone business like You Now. "The reason is the rise of i OS and Android," says Emmett Shear, the CEO of Twitch.He tried and failed to launch a general purpose live streaming service with Justin. Eventually he pivoted into gaming, a niche where being tied to a desktop computer made sense.

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“At first, it got to be enough so I could cover my phone bill.

Now I make more every month on You Now than I do from my work at the store,” Abuhamdeh tells me. We become friends.” A couple of times he’s broadcast from his bedroom while sleeping. They want to see everything that you do.” You Now launched back in September of 2012, but for its first year and a half struggled to find traction.

"It is a dream that a lot of people have been thinking about for a long time," Sideman told me, relaxing at a conference table in his midtown New York office.

"It is a holy grail." In the 1990s Sideman studied art and technology in New York.

In June of last year, on a whim and mostly out of boredom, Abuhamdeh mounted his phone next to the register and began to broadcast his day on You Now, a live streaming service. People would walk up and pay, he would ring them up, and then as they left, nail them with a zinger spoken to the camera.

But I was nervous, I felt like there were people watching. It was weird.” After a few weeks of broadcasting he began to find his rhythm.

The comments on popular videos fly by far too quickly for the broadcaster to follow.

Often you see streamers squinting to make out a username, trying to reply in real time to the flood of compliments and questions.

With the press of a few buttons Sideman tips Ginja the equivalent of , along with a message asking him to flip for Ben. Ben this flip is dedicated to you, for being so awesome.

Everybody say, 'We love Ben' in the chat." While the chat lights up with people chanting my name, Ginja dashes down his steps onto his front lawn, does an amazing corkscrew backflip, does it again for good measure, and then heads back to the porch, where he continues bantering a mile a minute, skimming the comments like a pro, dispensing jokes, attention, and affection in just the right doses.

He was part of a group that believed everyone would soon be the star of their own reality television series, all broadcast on the web.