Veteran Livestreamer Amalie 'Proxyfox' Reisvaag began her journey in content creation while she was still in high school. Fostering a loving community with one common factor, League of Legends, Amalie has traveled the world to establish her name in the esports scene. Joined by Lara Lunardi to discuss growing up on the internet, the current state of streaming, and her community.
Let’s take a look at 2020. It was surely an atypical year, I think for you it was quite eventful. You moved to LA, then the pandemic hit. I’m curious about what that was like to you.
[inhales deeply] Yeah… I don’t even know where to start. 2020 was supposed to be an adventure for both me and my boyfriend [Kobbe]. I was super excited to move to LA because that seemed like the perfect opportunity for me to become part of the streamer community over there. In Europe, the community is kind of separated by country, and in Norway, there are not that many streamers.
We moved, then corona happened. My visa got put on hold, and I had to leave the country since my temporary visa was about to run out. Moving back to Berlin, while my boyfriend was still in LA was definitely really rough. In the same period of time, he was being replaced at TSM, while having no friends in LA and being alone. For me, I was also quarantined at the Misfits apartments, while no one else was there. It was definitely really rough at the start.
Now that this is over, we had a very good offseason in Denmark, and I am excited to be back in Berlin. It feels more like home than ever.
How did you overcome the difficult times and managed to stay on track and still achieve your streaming goals?
For me, the fact that everyone is going through this makes me think it doesn’t just suck for me, it sucks for everyone. One of my family members recently passed, and I was not able to attend their funeral in Norway. That really, really hurt. Then I shared those feelings with my community, and they came back with stories of their own hardships, like not being able to be at the hospital with their families, so it felt like we had to get through this together and that was helpful.
Keeping positive, and safe inside, makes me feel like I am doing my part, and that motivates me to keeps me going.
There is this “little ray of sunshine” about your streams that helps your community get through rough days. Where do you find this in you?
I’ve always been open to my audience about how I am feeling, whether it is sad or happy. When I started streaming, I was in a really bad place, and they helped me get through that. I regained my confidence.
Streaming has always been helpful to me, and I knew I wanted to help them as they help me. So I am open to talk about everything with them, about their lives, mental health. I try to stream as much as possible, so they have a safe space to hang out, make friends, talk with each other on Discord. It feels good to create a space where they can just come and talk about anything whenever they feel like it.
Advocating for mental health can have a great impact on a community. Where did you learn to take care of yourself in that regard?
I have done a lot of self-reflection. I try to get through the root of a problem and think about what is causing a certain mood. Talking to friends about their issues, and my issues are also very helpful. That way we see our problems from different perspectives.
With the current pandemic, a lot of eyes have turned to the online entertainment of live streaming and gaming. What changes have you noticed in the scene since covid hit?
It’s been a great year for gaming, especially with the release of more casual games like Fall Guys and Among Us, which opened up the doors to “closet games” to get in the community. It has been good for content and bringing people together. The German scene has really gotten closer. The fact that people are staying more at home has also really helped since they can join you for a stream any time.
Kind of still on the topic of changes in streaming, I am curious about your perspective on who was Proxyfox at the beginning of her career, versus who is Proxyfox now.
When I first started streaming I was 16 years old and in high school. I was constantly bullied, which made me be really self-conscious. A few of my friends said I should start streaming since they enjoyed playing online with me. At the time, streaming was really new.
After trying it, I got so much positive feedback. Back then I still lived in my parents’ basement, on top of being bad at video games [laughs]. I found the courage to keep doing it. I think what has changed the most is that I have so much more confidence in the person I am now.
When I started, I was basically a child. I was really immature. But now, it feels weird to have grown up on the internet, since most of my life is just...out there. A lot of times I have to deal with my personal life being public information. If I had a boyfriend and we broke up, we would have to do it publicly, since people would see us together all the time. That part is weird.
Now I am really happy with where I am. My content, my community, a lot has changed, but only for the positive.
Have you gotten to build up resolutions for 2021?
Oof. I haven’t set specific goals.
Probably smart given the times we live in…[laughs]
[laughs] Yeah if I had set goals like quantifying my growth, I would just obsess about it. My number one goal streaming is to help as many people as possible, give them happiness. That is something I will continue to do. Keep on spreading positivity.