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Women in Streaming: Hannah

8th March 2021

Interview with Hannah


UK based Twitch streamer.

Name: Hannah
Pronouns: She/her
Based in: Kent, UK
Platform: Twitch
Streams: Retro games, point and click, simulation games, arts and crafts. 
Hannah is also an ambassador for Autistica Play and partakes in charity streams also.


Hi Hannah! Tell us three fun facts about yourself.

  1. I am a fully qualified teacher and taught under 11's for a decade.
  2. I collect Pokémon games and memorabilia.
  3. I love birds, particularly owls - I have little ornament owls tucked away all over my house that sometimes inadvertently make visitors jump.

When did your streaming journey begin, and what inspired you to start?

I had a breakdown after the birth of my son and was eventually diagnosed as autistic. It was suggested I try and join some online communities with interests that were similar to my own to try and make some friends and have people to talk to each day. It went from setting up a Twitter account to doing a bit of everything from videos, streaming, writing and everything in between. I think watching others enjoying the interaction with an audience without having to be in the presence of actual humans appealed to me as well as just hanging out and having fun. I have had to scale back and be much more flexible than I would like because of various health/disability issues so I don't have a schedule or anything like that. It tends to be a case of 'yeah I feel good today let's have a giggle'.

What's your favourite game/content to stream/share? What do you enjoy most about it?

I love streaming adventure games, particularly point and click/hidden object/puzzlers. My community all work with me to solve the problems with varied success, especially in the older games that can be really difficult. We have shared some hilarious moments usually during moments of trial and error. The fact that you can laugh until you cry with people from all around the world without a soul in the room with you is really special. Usually, we end up finding old walkthroughs or hand-drawn maps from when the old games were the new games and enjoy the journey and the mechanics that were used at the time. I also have a weird habit of singing about what I am doing without always realising which has led to some unintended earworms about lifts, men called Gary and bums (don't ask!)

Do you feel like there is a stigma for women streamers in the industry?

Women tend to be perceived as the pretenders in gaming - in it for money and notoriety...we only got into it because of a man or we only know how to make tech work because of our male counterparts. That can make you vulnerable to abuse from the outset by people who feel that you shouldn't be 'allowed' to know more than they do or enjoy a game that they don't.

I feel women also get a lot of negative attention for their body type, perceived attractiveness and topics of conversation. Platforms have dress codes for women but very little for men to have to follow for example. I have had awful comments about my appearance or the fact that swearing or burping isn't 'ladylike'. Friends of mine with larger breasts or fuller figures will panic about what to wear in the summer on camera. A strappy top wouldn't make you think twice most of the time in the height of summer, but it nearly always attracts nasty comments while streaming. People can swan into your chat and make all sorts of grotesque comments in a way that you don't tend to get as often in male-led streams.

I also know several women, including myself, who have had to manage stalking and harassment from people who feel that watching you means that they know you personally and you owe them some kind of debt in return. Or from people who develop some irrational dislike of you, even if you've never spoken to them. Doxxing of female streamers is not uncommon and abuse is rife with little done by social media and streaming companies to investigate repeat offenders who make multiple disposable accounts. With the online world the way it is, it's very difficult to escape harassment and maintain social contact and work. You can't just turn off the internet for the sake of your sanity.

That makes it all sound horrible! It isn't all horrible! It's mostly lovely, but I went into the scene very naive and as a vulnerable person. I've made waaaay more friends than trolls out of streaming, and these trusted friends now support me sounding out ideas and offering advice. That's a real bonus.

What's one piece of advice you'd give to women who want to begin streaming?

Get some people you trust to be your mod team. I have amazing mods who look out for me on and off stream and we have got through some huge ups and downs together. They are a mixture of men, women and non-binary folks who each have different experiences and perspectives.

I've a real international community of followers who are absolutely lovely and I wouldn't be without them. My mods have really supported and encouraged that growth and closeness of community, as well as kicking trolls to the kerb and giving fantastic hugs when we have been able to meet in person at events.

Where can people find you online?

Twitch: twitch.tv/retroprincess1

Twitter: @retroprincess1

Check out all of the InternationalWomensDay interviews here.

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