Recently, a hacker released what is arguably one of the biggest data leaks from Twitch, revealing everything from its base source code to details about rumored Amazon Steam competitor Vapor. Included in this huge information dump was also the income of nearly every streamer that uses Twitch as a content platform.

Of course, while what content creators make should not be the most notable aspect of Twitch's data leak for its over 41 million users, a list of the top 100 earners on Twitch has begun to gain huge traction on Twitter. User KnowSomething posted a list of the top 100 earners on Twitch, extracted from the data leak that was posted on 4Chan. The tweet thread had both a breakdown of recent monthly earnings and gross income since August 2019.

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Since its posting on October 6, the series of tweets has over 18,000 collective retweets, which is a staggeringly large number for most Twitter threads. Of particular interest to the tweeting public seems to be the gross income breakdown over the past two years. The huge amount of money earned by the top 0.1% of Twitch's streamers has shocked many, but it should be noted that this list is not comprehensive. Gross income from Twitch in this list does not include money from sponsorship deals, donations, or from shadier monetary pursuits like the recent Twitch gambling controversies.

Critical Role is Twitch's Highest Earner Since 2019

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In 2018, Critical Role began its second livestreamed Dungeons and Dragons campaign to resounding success. The year following also marked an incredibly important time for Critical Role, which had very quickly become its own production company, as it split from previous nerd-content network Geek and Sundry in February.

Distancing itself from the dwindling Geek and Sundry platform proved to be a solid business decision, as the group’s gross Twitch income since August 2019 is over $9.5 million, placing it as the highest-earning Twitch stream out there. The Legend of Vox Machina animated series is also set to launch in February 2022 on Amazon, showing just how far the game has come from its Geek and Sundry origins.

Unfortunately, the Critter community didn't take this information well. While the series originally started as a home game between some voice actor friends, it has since spiraled into a fully-fledged media company. Many marginalized voices in the TTRPG community critiqued the lack of diverse players in the upcoming third campaign, and the company's Twitch revenue has been used to argue it has a responsibility to promote more diversity in the TTRPG space.

Twitch’s Highest-Paid Individual Streamers

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Interestingly, there is a massive income disparity between the platform’s top individual streamers. Streamer xQc, who recently criticized GTA Online RP servers, earned the second most amount of money between August 2019 and 2021 on Twitch. During that time, he managed to accrue over $8.5 million.

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In contrast, the third highest-grossing streamer across that period, professional Counterstrike: Global Offensive player Summit1g, made significantly less at $5.8 million. Massive fluctuations in income were not, however, the only notable disparity revealed by this highest-earner list.

Of the top 100 highest-income streamers, very few were women, and even fewer were people of color or openly LGBTQ+. The first non-male on the list was Pokimane, who came in at number 39 on the list and also represents POC. Perhaps the most interesting thing revealed in this income leak is the lack of diversity among Twitch's highest-earning streamers, at least in terms of subscription counts and ad revenue.

The Twitch Income List Isn't Really That Accurate

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After the recent Hasan Piker house drama, the popular political streamer was well-prepared to deal with the backlash to people learning a rough approximate of his income. HasanAbi noted that the information in the leak is not that revelatory, as it just includes money from ads and subscriptions.

However, as Piker astutely pointed out, he is not exactly the norm for streamers. Most take on many more sponsorships and brand deals than he does, which would mean their actual revenue would be an awful lot higher than what's on the huge Twitch leak. Adin Ross, who only features at number 32 on the top 100 list, made a lot of money on suspect cryptocurrency coin promotions in 2021, which he admits to.

This could make him significantly wealthier than others who place higher on the list. Twitch's data leak might have shown off how much Twitch streamers earn from just advertisements and subscriptions, but shed very little light on some of the less savory ways that some content creators make money.

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