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YouTube Co-Founder Launches Questionable Streaming Service for Internet Chefs

Illustration for article titled YouTube Co-Founder Launches Questionable Streaming Service for Internet Chefs

Nom is the new pet project of YouTube co-founder Steve Chen. People are calling it the Twitch for internet chefs. The only problem? Filming a chef is a lot harder than filming a video game.

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The vast majority of professional cooking shows use multiple camera setups. Nom supports multi-cam, though how it will be implemented has yet to be seen. Any multi-cam setup nevertheless necessitates a crew of people in your kitchen offering production assistance and the expenses (e.g. cameras, lighting, sound) that come with it. This essentially destroys the biggest part of what makes Twitch a thriving community: a low barrier to entry. Because the heavy visual lifting for most Twitch streamers is taken care of by whatever game they’re playing, it frees them up to put on a good show.

Those Nom chefs who don’t invest in expensive film equipment would probably be broadcasting vlogger-quality video, which is a massive problem when it comes to food. Given that smell and taste can’t translate through a screen, all we’re left with is how the food looks, and look is crucial not only for determining the appeal of a recipe but also following it accurately.

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On that note, most recipes have a lot of downtime, and no one in the world wants to watch that. Rolling out fondant? 15 minutes of drudgery. Proofing dough? Have fun staring at a bowl for several hours. Is anyone going to inflict this level of boredom on their viewers? Apparently not yet, because a quick look at their site only revealed one available stream—which has since ended—and consisted entirely of one guy spending 10 minutes to make a cup of coffee.

[Venture Beat]

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DISCUSSION

I’m tempted to sign up just to have a live stream of my pot of carnitas boiling for an hour and a half...

Watching videos of cooking is fine, and I’ll admit to doing that on occasion, but there’s a reason for the editing on any major cooking show. I mean, *maybe* you could time it perfectly so that while something is cooking you could be prepping/chopping something else for dinner? So:

Prepare main course (~10min). Put main course in oven.
Chop vegetables (~10min). Start sauteing vegetables.
Prepare salad (~10min).
Pull everything out and you’re set.

So your main dish cooks for 20min, your vegetables saute for 10, and you’ve got a salad to start it off? But damn, you’ve got a pretty small window of time that you can actually cook things...