What Is Streamer Mode In Discord?
Last Updated: January 7, 2020
Streamer Mode in Discord is like a mini privacy screen that tries to hide sensitive information for watchers while you’re streaming live. For example, say you’re streaming WoW Classic and have Discord on in the background of the stream. Someone messages you in Discord asking you if you’re going to the sports bar in town tonight or if you’re still a student at Smalltown High. This kind of information can be used against you, which is why Discord introduced Streamer Mode.
Streamer Mode suppresses accidental information leaks that could lead to doxxing, swatting or general negativity on a stream. With swatting being a real challenge to streamers, Discord is at least trying to minimize the chances of it happening to you.
Streamer Mode in Discord
Keeping your online life and real life have to be kept separate. At first it was for convenience. Do you really want your friends or work colleagues knowing you LARP or Cosplay? Or play Sims 4 even though you’re married with children and have a good job? Now keeping your two lives separate can be a matter of life and death.
Swatting is a real risk to streamers and something we have covered here on SwipeTips before. It’s just one threat streamers have to contend with while sharing their game and their life online. Discord is at least trying to help.
On its own, Streamer Mode is not enough to safeguard your identity. Used in conjunction with other practical measures, it can help keep your identity safe.
How does Streamer Mode help keep you safe?
There are four distinct settings within Streamer Mode in Discord and each offers to keep one part of your identity safe.
- Hide Personal Information. This will keep your email, other accounts, any notes and Discord Tags safe from view in a stream.
- Hide Instant Invite Links will suppress any invites or invite codes you receive while streaming. You will still be able to see them in your messages but they won’t be displayed on your stream.
- Disable Sounds does exactly that. Stops any audio from your Discord appearing in your stream.
- Disable Notifications is similar but for all notifications you would normally see in Discord.
Enable Streamer Mode in Discord
If you stream and have Discord running at the same time, it makes sense to enable Streamer Mode and set it to automatically run when you’re streaming. Here’s how to do it.
- Select User Settings from the bottom of the screen.
- Select Streamer Mode from the left menu.
- Toggle Enable Streamer Mode and Automatically Enable/Disable both to on.
Now your personal information should be protected when you’re live online. It’s a little thing but every little helps.
Other ways to stay safe as a streamer
Streamer Mode in Discord is one of many steps you can take to keep your identity and therefore, yourself safe online. With swatting becoming increasingly common with no end in sight, it’s vital that you keep your identity separate from your streaming persona. It isn’t just about swatting but also general toxicity, identity theft or even some kind of revenge.
Create a persona
Many popular streamers have created an online persona that is different to their real identity. For some, this came naturally and as part of their performance. Others took a view that it would help keep them safe. I would agree. Creating a persona to use online that has nothing to do with your real identity acts like a firewall to your life.
Create one and stay true to it and your fans won’t mind. Keep at least one degree of separation across your entire online life and you go a long way to staying safe online.
Check your frame
Take a critical look at the framing you use when streaming. Does the camera show anything identifiable? Does it show family pictures? Concert posters with location? Anything that could be used to identify you? If so, remove it before you stream. If you have the space, set up a ‘sterile zone’ where all elements that could be in frame are not linked to you in any way.
Keep art on the walls or use posters, but make sure they cannot be used to locate or identify you.
Use a VPN
Your IP address can be used to identify your geographical location. Not necessarily to street level but certainly to town or neighborhood. Using social engineering, some scammers can trick you into revealing it accidentally and it can be used to help identify you and where you live. Using a VPN saves you from that. If you’re fooled into downloading a Trojan or malware, it will show the VPN address and not your real one.
Plus, as it encrypts all your web traffic, it hides you from everyone whether they are looking for you or not!