DATE: Fri 07 May 2021 By:


Recently the friendly group of nerds that I am a part of discovered a free software project called Owncast. The projects aim is simple. Provide a self-hosted alternative to Twitch. Sounds like one of those things that gets complicated fast doesn’t it? Well, you know what… they only went and did it!

Owncast website.

The software/service/whatever is wonderful. TT co-host Drewington Montgomery the third went from hearing about own cast to having it up and running in a frighteningly short amount of time and there a quick start guide on the website that will get you setup too. Assuming you have a VPS with enough grunt (and not a lot of grunt is required)

Drew quickly had an instance of the server running for me over on my website (linked below) and I must say, it’s wonderful! There’s an admin page where I can set “branding” simply and with zero nonsense. Is a simple line in there where I just set the stream title as well as manage chat if required (and yes, it has built in chat, that does not require sign in)

My instance (

To watch the stream you can either watch on the website same as you would with twitch or connect via MPV (same as you can with twitch, I guess) for extra sparkle you can choose to have your stream listed in the ownstream-directory where you get a little bit of discoverability with zero effort.


Didn’t you stop streaming?

Yes I did. I stopped streaming because I felt like it was too much work, I felt like it was a chore and I was constantly thinking about all those “twitch” things, like raids and moderation and music (c) nonsense. I was always worried about when I streamed and what I said and how it reflected on my YouTube audience. But, ultimately I just didn’t enjoy it. And i did it pretty regularly for almost 2 years!!!

That’s where OwnStream is great. Because if I want to throw up a stream with zero planning, its there for me, and there is no expectation of professionalism, or of consistency. I can start streaming and give the link out over discord and boop! I’m off.

Sure, fundamentally there’s no real difference between an ownstream and a twitch stream for the person streaming but I think self hosting this kind of thing being self-hosted and free of corporations makes is more in line with my values and there are less reasons for me not to do it.

I love the simplicity of it, and while I still don’t want to be a “streamer” I can at least now, throw up a fun stream for fun and talk to the people who come along :)