Live Video Streaming Service Firetalk Partners With TMZ, Announces Guest Feature

Firetalk, a live streaming video platform, on Wednesday announced it would partner with entertainment news site TMZ as well as online performers. The service also announced the launch of a new feature, Guest, which allows audience members to join a broadcaster live in video.

In addition to TMZ, Instagram’s singer and songwriter Maggie Lindemann, the Hollywood news site The Wrap and several other entertainers that have built large social media followings.

Firetalk bills itself as the “always on” live video service. In addition to going live, Firetalk broadcasters can create playlists of YouTube videos to show off their content to visitors even when they’re not broadcasting.

The company sees the new Guest feature as a way for broadcasters to engage with their audiences, to bring them on to ask questions, do live demonstrations or even report citizen journalism.

As large companies like Facebook and Twitter explore live video streaming with initiatives like Periscope and Facebook Live, Firetalk says the playlist feature separates it from other live video services.

“We believe in this idea of a 24/7 video service,” said Rush Doshi, Firetalk co-founder.

Guest could also be a way that Firetalk can set itself apart from the pack and appeal to broadcasters. On other services, users typically interact with live broadcasts primarily through comments. Especially in large viewing groups, the comments can be very frequent and too much for the broadcaster to handle. If you think about how live television broadcasts work, there are often guests on the shows. Why not include that feature online too?

Right now the company has its focus on entertainment sites and social media stars, but it seems it could have far-reaching applications. Even John McAfee told us at TechCrunch Disrupt he planned to use Firetalk for his presidential campaign.