Postman’s 2020 Twitch Rewind: A Look Back at Our First Livestreams
While livestreaming is mostly popular in gaming, there has been a huge bump in the number of science and technology streams—from tech companies looking to replace the meetup experience to teachers running live online classes to open-source contributors helping others join projects. The basics of it: Livestreaming refers to online streaming media simultaneously recorded and broadcast in real time (Wikipedia).
The developer relations team at Postman started livestreaming on a weekly basis at the beginning of this year. As our inaugural season is coming to an end, I want to take some time to look back at what we’ve done in 2020 — across 47 streams spanning more than 66 hours altogether. But first, let’s have a look at how it all began!
To add a bit of context, we initially started talking about creating a Postman Twitch channel back in 2019, but we decided to hold off on it because at the time we were busy planning a series of API-related workshops around the world. Needless to say, we quickly came back to the idea of live streaming when COVID-19 decided it wasn’t the right year to organize a world tour of on-site events. Looking back, I actually found my notes from the first team meeting when we decided to go for it: “Twitch Stream — plan is to have one each week. With someone from dev rel contributing each time. General questions about Postman, what’s new, etc.”
And so we did just that. In March, we kicked off the Postman Twitch channel with our first-ever livestream, about how to create a visualizer to track the number of COVID-19 positive cases by location using the COVID-19 API. Check out our first “Eureka” moment on stream:
It was our first, but definitely not our last—whether it was when getting the help of viewers while playing with the GitHub API, changing the color of lights based on the weather, or analyzing a tweet with a neutral sentiment using the Twitter API, we were never short of memorable livestream experiences. And they could never arrive too soon for my co-host, Postman Director of Developer Relations Joyce Lin.
Sharing the stage
From the beginning, we knew having the same hosts—myself and Joyce—every week was not sustainable. What if one of us was off on a holiday? What if we were running out of ideas? To remedy that, we chose to diversify both the type of content and the internal guest from one week to the next. This led to some deeply technical streams with not one, not two, but three (!) proxies:
And some more newbie-friendly streams:
We also wanted to open our community up to other streamers and engineers interested in sharing their knowledge and building our livestreaming channel with us. Working for an API development platform company, and with APIs being everywhere, it was easy to find great API enthusiasts that added a lot to our shows. We were lucky to welcome the following guests on our livestreams:
- Nicolas Grenie (Typeform)
- Cristiano Betta (Box)
- Jordan Schuetz (Mulesoft)
- Valentin Despa (Online Instructor)
- Lorna Mitchell (Vonage)
- Anthony Dombrowski (Ping)
- Aydrian Howard (Courier)
- Suhem Parack (Twitter)
- Upkar Lidder (IBM)
- Brian Douglas (GitHub)
- Marcel Ribas (Dropbox)
And now we can’t wait to meet with new faces in 2021.
Top 3 lessons from livestreaming
After almost a full year of streaming every week, we’ve learned a few things from our amazing community and from ourselves. Here’s my list of top three lessons learned from livestreaming:
1. It’s easy to share secrets when you are live.
And we wish it was the only time this happened.
2. If there’s a debate to be had, a debate there will be.
3. The Earth is an orange.
Stay tuned for more
That’s it for 2020! Obviously, having streamed live for what came out to be a total of 66 hours and 16 minutes, this is only a short summary. If you are a viewer, a guest, or someone who had no idea we’d been streaming, we hope to see you this Thursday, December 17, for our last livestream of the season—and next year for so many new adventures. And don’t forget to join us for our next live Office Hours on January 12 at 10am UTC or 7pm UTC to have all your Postman questions answered.