Today I wanted to talk about Dream aka dreamwastaken and the influence and power he has. This is not supposed to be an “exposed” sorta post and I don’t want to talk too much about the whole “did he cheat?” controversy but I rather wanted to talk about something that upset me a bit when I heard about him recently.
So, for context, Dream is one of the fastest-growing channels on Twitch/YouTube, right now, as far as I know, and he’s garnered a large following mainly through Minecraft content and some speedruns. In October 2020, he submitted a Minecraft speedrun in the 1.16+ category to Speedrun.com and was awarded 5th place for the record. On December 11th, following a long investigation, the verification team removed his run from the boards, claiming that he cheated due to very unlikely odds with some of the blaze rods/ender pearl drops. They also published a 14-minute video on YouTube and a report analyzing six archived live streams of speedrunning sessions by Dream from around that time. The odds that Dream would have gotten those items in that run were 1 in 7.5 trillion. These accusations were denied by Dream (in another YouTube video) and he commissioned a report written by an anonymous statistician who apparently was an astrophysicist. There was some back and forth there but ultimately, the mod team stood by their decision and Dream accepted it, though not admitting fault. The report that he commissioned only proved that it wasn’t impossible… but then again, a 1 in 7.5 trillion chance is still a chance.
Well, it’s May now and the drama is done and all of that… but Dream posted a Pastebin (that was now removed due to it potentially being harmful) where he played the victim and talked about him having hired a developer in the past to create mods and plugins for his YouTube videos. One of those plugins apparently tampered with the drop rates and he “accidentally” must have left that on… The issue is just that when asked if he could provide any mod folders, etc., he had deleted his mod files out of frustration.
The main issue that I have with this is that Dream says that he wants the drama to stop but he still publishes this again in May, basically eight months later to stir it up again. He makes himself vulnerable to his very dedicated community, which is somewhat dangerous actually… which is today’s topic, essentially.
Now, Dream’s fanbase can be described as very easily influenced and maybe a bit too obsessed. There are a lot of very toxic Dream Stans out there and I’m glad that most of them probably don’t have a WordPress account. Dream knows this but doesn’t comment on it too often. At times, he may say that people shouldn’t send hate to individuals that criticize him… but just because someone tells you to do something, that doesn’t mean that you will do it, right? Dream is actively adding fuel to the fire by reacting to fireb0rn’s video on his “apology” and immediately disliking it without watching the video. He removes the dislike followed by him saying “please don’t send hate to him, it will make me look bad”, which… sounds iffy. I recently learned about bad faith and I feel like it may be applicable here as well. He’s trying to show that he’s open-minded and friendly and I honestly don’t think that he had any ill intentions from this judging from this one VOD on Twitch that I watched… but it looks like him disliking the video immediately without watching it, him constantly saying that fireb0rn is reaching, misphrasing or telling lies, and him getting somewhat agitated over it… Well, all of that doesn’t really align with him saying “don’t send hate” as he kind of vilifies fireb0rn for “fake news”. Now, this is just me and my opinion on how it came across to me and stuff… but I also saw the chat feed that was showering him with compliments and telling him to dislike the video again and whatnot. I also saw that the video didn’t have too many dislikes at first and suddenly jumped to 7000 dislikes in a matter of hours. Luckily, the comment section seems to be tame so far but I’m not sure how long that will last.
I feel like if you have a platform like that and get into these controversies, you may need to consider your wording more and more. I mean, even I have to consider my wording non-stop as I constantly misphrase myself… and I’m only a few months older than Dream. Thank god that I don’t have a platform that I could use to influence people or that I could use to attack people. Dream tweeted out a thread where he, again, didn’t really apologise for cheating nor did he really admit to it, although it may kind of sound like that. His main content isn’t speedrun-related so to his community cheating isn’t that much of a big deal but it’s somewhat disrespectful to other speedrunners that actually put in the hours to train and get good times. I mean, there was this one SM64 speedrunner that pretended to be blindfolded but he clearly wasn’t. Him doing that may not sound like a big deal, especially as he didn’t submit any runs to the leaderboards but it’s still disrespectful towards all the other people that do run SM64 blindfolded as he mocks that effort and pretends that it’s easy. Either way, I just feel like Dream could handle this sorta stuff better. He says that he won’t say anything on the matter anymore but dedicates a whole stream to reacting to criticism where he tries to debunk it… kind of… in front of his live audience that is very easily influenced. At the same time, he tweets about it and is hence, again, in every one’s mouth as people aren’t sure if he’s brigading in that trending clip, which would be against Twitch’s Terms of Service… or if he’s “still” fine.
I know that that Twitter-Thread he posted had gained a lot of attention and one of the mods that disqualified his run previously was very upset about the whole matter as dream tries to make it seem as if it’s just over when people from his community basically sent death threats, insults, and all sorts of other things to that mod who’s verifying speedruns in his free time.
Uhm, “with great power comes great responsibility” and I’m not sure if Dream is handling it well, is what I’m saying. I doubt I’ll get attacked for this statement though and I doubt that people will go after me… hopefully. I just figured that this would be an interesting post to make as it bothered me when I read that Pastebin and as it bothered me when I saw the VOD from that trending clip there… I even clipped some things out of it because I found stuff he said troubling, hence, if you wanna, you can take a look at those, too. Hence, Sources:
Dream said in his pastebin that he had something developed and it was accidentally on when he did those speedruns… now he’s trying to argue against that by saying that plugins and mods are different things… but I think he’s trying to say that it’s not cheating if you tamper with game files by using “plugins” and not “mods”, which doesn’t make sense.
Anyways, it may sound hypocritical of me, actually, to talk about bad or wrong phrasing and criticising others for it but I’m trying my best to not phrase things wrong and I don’t have a platform like Dream millions of subscribers and followers and stuff. I find it a bit daunting that there’s this mob that may very much just attack people because they said something bad about their idol. It’s “stans” taken to an extreme and I don’t like it. Saying “don’t send hate” when you also say that people are lying and misphrasing things intentionally to make you look bad or whatever… I don’t know. It riles up your fanbase, I guess, which is bad when you already know how they attack people, even if you said “don’t send hate” beforehand. I mean, it doesn’t make it less bad and at the same time, I don’t think Dream has to take responsibility for his stans… I just find it a bit of a tricky subject and I wanted to talk about it. Hope you enjoyed this post.