His broadcasting schedule swelled from one or two hours a day to appearing live in four two-hour sessions. “I was using up around 70GB of data each month, and I’m with Verizon so you know that’s not cheap.” He was addicted to the interaction with the audience, but couldn’t afford to keep up with his costs.
"I was running a media technology agency for a while and trying to shove this down the throat of every client, but nobody wanted it," Sideman says.Watching a You Now stream can be an overwhelming experience.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.But now the mobile market is mature enough for a sea change.Of course, anyone getting premium goods outside the partner program gets no cut. He tunes in to the channel of a user named Flippin Ginja, a red-headed teen and amateur gymnast who is lounging on his porch swing.
"Guys, I’ve been drinking too much water," he tells his smartphone camera.
A 99 cent tip sometimes gets a broadcaster to smile, while more expensive offerings elicit a personal shoutout, or more intimate reaction.
The company won’t share what the revenue split is between streamers and You Now, saying only that broadcasters in the partner program get "the lion’s share" of their tips.
"It’s all about the addiction to real time feedback and the nodes in the brain that it triggers," Sideman tells me.
Users can give digital gifts, essentially sticks, like hearts, fistbumps, or beers.
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.