Twitch Streamer Ninja Made Close to $10 Million Last Year

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by cageymaru, Jan 1, 2019.

  1. Zarathustra[H]

    Zarathustra[H] Official Forum Curmudgeon

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    1.) 8% is not a realistic annual investment return. Retirement funds have gone broke due to over-optimistic estimates of 8%.

    2.) that 6-12% figure is complete and utter nonsense.

    Here is the annual inflation rate for the last 30 years.

    historical-inflation-rate-by-year-2019-01-01-macrotrends.png

    The average annual inflation over the last 30 years has been ~2.5%

    27/30 (90%) of those years were under 4%

    22/30 (~73/3%) of those years were under 3%

    We haven't had 6% inflation since 1990 when it hit 6.11%.

    We haven't had 12% inflation since 1980 during the famous "stagflation" recession.
     
  2. Derangel

    Derangel [H]ard as it Gets

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    Yeah, no. That is utter bullshit. The VAST majority of people on YT or Twitch have nowhere near that. Doesn't matter what they do, the vast majority of people on both platforms will never reach that level.
     
  3. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice [H]ardness Supreme

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    I am not familiar with his performance in particular, but I am curious as to the nature of the business itself as well as what led him this kind of success.

    I see part of the blurb mentioning he was a professional gamer long before Fortnite, so am I to understand the draw to his stream is that he plays at a very high level of competition? If so, I suppose that is like any other sort of professional athletic job in that your performance is somewhat time limited - you have to be really good to get in, make the most of your time in competition, and then smartly invest your earnings plus use your fame/reputation to provide ongoing compensation even when you're not competing at professional level. However, that is only a part of what livestreaming/gaming seems to be, where it becomes like running a PR firm and media empire. If you're not a pro, you have to find some other "hook" to get viewers watching and contributing while keeping them there. So you have to figure out what your "character" is going to be and you're essentially an entertainer - videogames are secondary and just part of your character. Of course, when a few styles of behavior get popularr it leads to others to follow suit which is why we have the various archetypes such as "meme-ing random wacky fun guy", "angry guy but in a funny way", "female flirty personality/sex appeal / check out my special cosplay pictures on Patreon", and more.

    Its kind of amazing that Twitch and other streaming video is ostensibly a draw as its "reality", but the intrusion of money into the space in every way from sponsorships to simply the need to engage in character performance, erode that. When Ninja and his management team talk about hours not streaming being lost money, its rather sad how everything is so regimented yet gives the appearance of being this fun, spontaneous experience. I've spoken with only a couple of truly pro level streamers (ie those not making millions, but easily 50 - 250K ) and they have management companies , sponsors behind the scene, and lots of other entertainment industry style intrusion. Some of this is understandable given the larger amounts of money changing hands, but it does seem to hurt the purity of the medium as a whole. Out of character conversations confirm my suspicion that many of them can't enjoy gaming the way they used to because its become an occupation and they can't even stream the way they'd wish because there's always some metric telling them they could be making more money if they were doing X instead. The viewership is also part of the problem where there are SO many channels with more or less similar content of every stripe etc.. mixed with a younger crowd who is apparently more fickle and flighty than any beforehand. If Ninja, who I am to understand has something of cult of personality, has to worry about really losing repeat viewership if he's not there for so many hours/days etc... then imagine what literally anyone else has to go through?!

    Worse, much like most other recent "disruptive" tech, it is scaled in a way that's expands income inequality, gives little if any security to the actual workers, while siphoning most of the money up the chain to platform owners. Its the "gig-economy" transposed onto entertainment, but like most "tech/gig"s its billed as being easy to start and the chance for success is presented JUST close enough it seems possible; maybe not to pull down millions, but to put some extra cash in your pocket, act as a side job, or perhaps even work up to it being a primary occupation. The big winners are of course the streaming platform companies, notably Amazon (Twitch) and Google (YouTube) who get the lion's share of the ad revenue, subscription fees and all of that from all sides. Many of these platforms also are designed to make it harder to climb up the ladder so to speak, especially when it comes to monetization. Someone just starting out isn't going to be able to set up subscriptions or whatnot until they ascend the various Twitch ranks, which is something of a pity because this is often the time when they need even a small amount of funding the most. The aforementioned viewership issues cause a problem in this regard for newcomers as there is highly likely to be someone similar enough in certain ways to you, but already established. So those viewers are more likely to go to that established streamer instead of the newcomer just by how the streams are listed (by default) by viewing numbers, not to mention that the established individual likely has nice "goodies" to hand out for supporting them. Maybe they have fancy icons and animations, rewards, they run giveaways for software and hardware alike which are being provided without cost etc. This causes lots of those trying to break into streaming to end up putting way more of their own money into it as an investment - buying better hardware for streaming, things to give away out of their own pockets, subscriptions and services to the cottage industries that claim to make you successful etc - even when there may be little chance it makes a difference in the end.

    While I'm aware a portion of this is the nature of the glut of choices in this entertainment medium thanks to overall ease of access, the powers that be and the hangers-on have structured it in a way to be more exploitative than need be, while covering it with a gleaming facade of hope and respectability. After all, a service which can make Ninja or a few others millionaires playing video games, or raise so much money for charity with ultra-positive feel good vibes can't be evil, right? I've long thought of ways to make a better, more equitable streaming experience for the core participants (ie the streamers and viewers) involved but much like alternatives to any social networking phenomena , even if one could provide a technically viable, open, and ethical alternative we have to deal with the network effect and the incumbents happening to be two of the biggest, wealthiest, and most powerful tech companies in the nation. This does not mean one should not attempt to do so simply because it is difficult, as the current trajectory is in many ways heading the wrong direction.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019
  4. MRAB54

    MRAB54 Gawd

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    It's funny how that works. Having a family and kids can change that, but still if you're this guy and you've built this and it's your passion and purpose how could you stop? Agree in some ways, but don't think it is as black and white as you make it to be.
     
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  5. Farkle

    Farkle Lurker

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    Why do people buy sports packages with their cable plan? Why do people buy season passes for teams? Why do people buy expensive t-shirts at a venue when they've already bought the concert ticket? Why do people pay for video games instead of just pirating them? It ensures through capitalistic process, the thing you love is encouraged to stick around, and people involved suffer a little less.

    I don't particularly find Ninja or Fortnite amusing, but I follow and subscribe to quite a few musicians on Twitch, because to me giving them tips is essentially like hearing them at a venue and tossing some money in their hat, making sure that they aren't a totally starving artist. Ninja plays on a very high level in Fortnite (pro-gamer/"athlete"), so there is no reason to not provide him an audience and market if you're a streaming service like Twitch. He's the 1%, in that he makes a great income, and does something he loves -- can't beat that. I hated my job, I made okay money, I required my job to keep paying down student loans and property debt, people like Ninja just found a different path. And just like getting my job could be attributed to right place, right time, it's the same for him.

    All of the hatred, jealousy, and confusion these people get is pretty weird. Most people on Twitch and YouTube make less than minimum wage, with a 40-60 hour work week -- they do it because they love it... but there will always be that guy that yells "GET A JOB!", due to unwarranted jealousy. Many just can't fathom why someone would watch another person performing, yet sit there in front of a TV, or listen to the radio all day. People get jealous because that streamer is doing what they want with their life, and having to suck down peanut butter sandwiches/suffer, but the jealous don't see the suffering, or how hard it is compared to having a job with a boss, and guidelines to follow... They just see their world view crumble a little, and it's an affront to their senses. Misery loves company, I suppose.
     
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  6. Filter

    Filter [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Guarantee he made more than 10 million last year.. If you watch him he talks about how he invests it and hes taking care of his family and his familys family etc pay off mortgages etc.
     
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  7. Derangel

    Derangel [H]ard as it Gets

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    Its the way any entertainment medium goes. People can get into music, acting, painting, whatever because of their passion and because they're good at it but eventually it becomes a job. Even if you love your job it is still a job. You generally don't want to do your job when you're not working so it saps the desire to do what you previously loved because it has now become work.

    As for what people go through for this: Oh, yeah, its crazy. I have a friend who used to be employed by a MCN . They paid him a salary for his Youtube and Twitch work, but it was up to him to build up his audience. In order to do that there were days where he would play a game, by himself, for 8-10+ hours in order to have enough content to put daily videos up on his channel. Since he did multiple series at a time he'd need to do that for 2+ games. Then there were more time consuming series he did where he went in-depth with playing a character in games like Oblivion that require time to write out full scripts, spend hours playing the game to get the right footage, and then edit everything together into 40-60+ minute videos to be released once a week. Then he'd also be streaming at set times on the MCN's Twitch channel, require multiple hours of those days dedicated to that. Then there were other projects he worked on with the company. He loved the work, enjoyed people saying they liked what he did, etc but as soon as the MCN decided to change their business model and focus and dropped him, he stopped doing a lot of that. Instead he decided to heavily cut back and get a full-time job outside of Youtube and Twitch. He's seemed a lot happier since doing that.
     
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  8. TheOne&OnlyZeke

    TheOne&OnlyZeke 100% Irish

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    I don't get it mainly because I don't watch any form of sports on TV or the web.
    However if this guy can make a killing....killing then more power to him!
     
  9. opfreak

    opfreak Gawd

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    These same people bitch about how expensive cable is, but are willing to shell out big money for a single channel, (and if they pay for one, they pay for more). Yes its a little different in that you re paying exactly for what you want. But its a shit ton of money, for very little.
     
  10. Woody1150

    Woody1150 n00b

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    Even with as little streaming I have watched, there still must be people out there watching with money to burn. One stream I was watching (I think it was for the player Summit1g or something like that) people were donating money to complain about him not reading donations during the stream. In the 10 mins I watched, I think he made almost $400 from the donations from people bitching.
     
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  11. cageymaru

    cageymaru [H]ard as it Gets

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    Well there is Amazon Prime which gives you one "free" Twitch subscription per month. So if you or your kid likes a streamer, then you can subscribe to them monthly for free. Of course you have to subscribe to Amazon Prime to get this benefit. The free subscription is the $4.99 tier and the streamer gets his or her normal cut of the money. So in a way Amazon is subsidizing many Twitch streamer's income.

    What Amazon gets out of it is advertising of the games that it sells, a better understanding of which games to promote each month, most streamers have an Amazon referral link that Twitch watchers use to make Amazon purchases, and more data about Amazon demographic.

    They also allow game publishers like Bethesda to create plugins that track how much you watch their games. So if you watch a lot of Warframe on Twitch, then you can win free stuff in game. If you watch certain Quake events then you get skins. Elder Scrolls Online watching gives in game items like mounts. No telling what information they can glean from those plugins. Hell if I go by the AMD website, it can tell that I have a RX Vega 64 so I can redeem codes for games. I'd assume other websites can do the same.
     
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  12. Vega

    Vega [H]ardness Supreme

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    Some purple haired twerp playing a kids game making more than the salary of like 200 police officers. Crazy times we live in.
     
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  13. Comixbooks

    Comixbooks Ignore Me

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    That is it I'm streaming the thing is the are 1000 streamers to replace me.
     
  14. Dayaks

    Dayaks [H]ardness Supreme

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    Amazon bought Twitch so I am sure they know the one free subscribe is like a gateway drug. The streamer gets a 50% cut.

    I subscribe to two small streamers. I have very little time to game and if you sub it’s ad free. I basically watch when doing housework (laundry/ dishes/ cooking). If I had time to game I wouldn’t watch at all but as others have said it’s the same to me as getting a football package, ect.

    The one small streamer, which is the leader of my World of Warships clan, was gifted $2000 by one guy. I guess all you need is a few people like that lol.
     
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  15. singe_101

    singe_101 2[H]4U

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    People will pay to listen to or watch Howard Stern's show. I've listened to 50+ hours of it but that's a tiny grain of sand compared to the diehards. Then for a younger crowd they will pay for a Twitch stream sub and an engaging host.
     
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  16. The Mad Atheist

    The Mad Atheist Gawd

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    I don't get it, back in the day playing NES with my friends, I always hated watching until it was my turn.
    Boy, have times changed.
     
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  17. andrewaggb

    andrewaggb Limp Gawd

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    I used to watch some Day 9 starcraft 2 stuff on youtube. My brother watches some heroes of the storm tournaments. I watched some overwatch finals a few months ago. My kids watch some youtube streams sometimes but I don't think any of them watch much twitch. One of my kids live streamed some fortnite to twitch a few times but I think it was mostly that they wanted to try it, not that they have any followers beyond some school friends.
     
  18. Spire3660

    Spire3660 [H]ard|Gawd

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    WHY DO YOU NEED SO MUCH MONEY??? FFS i will never understand the drive to make hundreds of millions. The part about actually calculating lost revenue for taking time off is abhorrent.
     
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  19. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics I don't get it

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    Same argument often made about athletes vs. scholars, and can't remember the movie but there's one quote (probably butchered) that sums it up "When has a stadium ever filled up with people wanting to watch someone do a math problem?"
     
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  20. Some people are very motivated, not everyone has low goals either, and that is a very, VERY good thing.

    People also tend to not understand how goals and wants move and grow. Even myself, I had income goals of where I would be happy at....and have since blew past them far faster than I thought I would and my goals have kept moving forward.
     
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  21. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics I don't get it

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    I will say back in the day having kids watch me play Street Fighter 2 at the arcade was not exactly a rare occurrence, I was good locally (not good compared to today's players mind you) and kids would watch me beat up on people. Now those who were also good (or thought they were) enough to beat me did put quarters up waiting their turn, and at some level I'm sure people put a quarter in to challenge me even though they knew they would lose. So times really haven't changed that much.
     
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  22. singe_101

    singe_101 2[H]4U

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    I think this includes high school and college students who pull out their phones to watch Twitch but don't have time to play a full game of anything.
     
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  23. Dayaks

    Dayaks [H]ardness Supreme

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    Or dads with multiple young kids lol.
     
  24. Jagger100

    Jagger100 [H]ardness Supreme

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    In the 1980's economic metric became important politically and have been manipulated ever since. Those numbers from 1990 onwards are bullshit. In the 90's companies began down sizing their products. Fewer sheets per roll of toilet paper, smaller pizzas. But the diminshed value was reflected in inflation metrics. In another approach people switched from Steak to Hamburger, they were both classified as 'beef' and you got deflation. It's all BS since the 90's. Probably not great prior.
     
  25. Sniper|3d-R|

    Sniper|3d-R| [H]ardness Supreme

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    I know nothing about him.... but I hope he has mentors or financial coaches... If not, there is a high % he will loose it all.

    Does he cheat? Seen some stats on him this last week and he has crazy ratios.... I know back in CS 1.x days, I was called a cheater but I just knew the maps and all the tricks.. I'm guessing he plays so much is all muscle memory.
     
  26. capnstabn

    capnstabn Limp Gawd

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    At the end of 2017/2018 he got on the Fortnite bandwagon and rebranded himself to be more family friendly. He was also very good at educating these kids on linking their parents Amazon Prime account to their Twitch account. If you have Amazon Prime you are allowed one free sub a month, and hes probably getting paid 2.50-3.50 per Twitch Prime sub. I think the Twitch Prime thing is what really elevated streamer income.
     
  27. Orddie

    Orddie 2[H]4U

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    We will be sure to also stay off your lawn.


    He represents a culture. Guys have sorts they talk about with other guys, women have Tv shows. Kids... they have games. It works.

    He will burn out. You can’t work for 12 hours a day like that forever. His wife should be apart of the group counting how much they are loosing.
     
  28. Aix.

    Aix. [H]ard|Gawd

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    Kind of a silly question considering he broadcasts all his gameplay for anyone to see; he'd be exposed immediately if he did. It's a combination of being a good gamer plus playing thousands of hours more than most other people playing the game - practice makes perfect and all that.

    For all these "but why watch someone else play?" types of posts:

    - There are a lot more opportunities to stream something like a Twitch channel during downtime now than even a few years ago, let alone "back in my day." Any time you might have turned on the TV or read some news (eating, commuting, etc.) could be someone's time to turn on Twitch and watch the games they like.
    - Twitch channels I've seen seem to be something of a local hangout, where everyone is experiencing the same thing together and participating in chat.
    - Twitch channels can also be a great source of high-level play for your game of choice; I don't watch people play Path of Exile, but I've seen countless clips of streamers like RaizQT, Alkaizerx, Mathil, etc., because they're playing all the time and producing content.

    As someone who's filled a lot of commuting hours listening to podcasts like RadioLab or JRE I can understand wanting to support content creators, so I guess it's not crazy to imagine someone subbing to a Twitch streamer even though they could simply get it for free.
     
  29. atp1916

    atp1916 [H]ard|DCoTM x1

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    All about those identity politics are we?

    Be happy that someone is doing well from their honest effort.
     
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  30. Orddie

    Orddie 2[H]4U

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    Stalking my posts?

    I am happy for the guy. What part of my post left you to think I was not?

    I, like others, have said his name will not last. I stand by this. I also disagree when the line that said his wife and business manager spend time counting how many people they are loosing per hour he was not steaming. I still think she should not be doing that and supporting him to be something other than a gamer.

    I think your post has another agenda.
     
  31. XvMMvX

    XvMMvX [H]ard|Gawd

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    Only people who say this do not have something that other people want... idea, skills, etc.

    If people didn't want so much money then we wouldn't have anything that we currently enjoy. Food, cars, video games, etc. It is mind bottling how many people on a tech forum fail to understand that. This industry was built by guys dropping out of college and going all in in their parents garage. They risked everything and now you want to tell them they make too much money, fuck that.
     
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  32. trick_m0nkey

    trick_m0nkey Moderator Staff Member

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    I support Twitch streamers that I like (Neuro, love his SC2 stream) for the same reason I'm on the [H] Patreon. I believe in paying money for unique content I can't get anywhere else. That's how many successful people in the business are making their money today. Ninja is just very much on top of his game, and his fans love him for it.
     
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  33. NickJames

    NickJames [H]ardness Supreme

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    Crank it out as much as you can, even if you only stay relevant for a couple of years I would still love to collect that paper as long as I am relevant.
     
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  34. Woody1150

    Woody1150 n00b

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    If it's a popular twitch channel, I don't see how anyone could participate in chat. It is just mass chaos. Maybe there are more intelligent / organized ones, but most I have seen the chat is constantly scrolling with hundreds of emojis or people just typing garbage.
     
  35. Puterguru

    Puterguru 2[H]4U

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    As you said
    Minis Uncle Sam (Probably 55%) :mad:
    Minus Health Care he probably has to pay for himself (I have no idea what that amount would be)
    And the fact that he is very young then all of the sudden 10 mil does not seem like much. I mean hes not wondering where his next meal is coming from or anything but...
     
  36. WorldExclusive

    WorldExclusive [H]ardForum Junkie

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    A desire to never be harshly affected by inflation. Us middle class folk feel it everyday.
     
  37. SomeoneElse

    SomeoneElse [H]ard|Gawd

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    Yea that's the part that concerns me about their focus on streaming......12 hr work days, no thanks. You can't go on vacation because you are scared you will lose to many subs.....wow
     
  38. Flexion

    Flexion [H]ard|Gawd

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    What's wrong with buying castles? XD
     
  39. NoOther

    NoOther [H]ardness Supreme

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    People have paid to watch others play games for a loooooong time. It isn't really any different than watching gladiators fight, soccer, football, golf, etc. Or even watching a movie, then you are just watching someone act out something instead of you actually going and doing it. Or paying to read a book instead of writing one yourself. Paying someone to cook your food instead of cooking it yourself. Etc, etc, etc.
     
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  40. NoOther

    NoOther [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yes, but the number 1 nonstarter is laziness. It is amazing how many people complain about what others make or the success of others while also complaining about having to work too hard or too much.

    Likewise, when I was considering whether or not to go into professional gaming, that was a big part of my decision. To be on a pro team, I would be expected to practice 10 hours a day 6 days a week at minimum. I realized that the games would cease to be as fun doing that. And to make enough money, I would have to do more than that to be at the top.
     
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