Zelina Vega and Twitch are like best friends now, but that wasn’t always the case.
In June, WWE revealed that they had finalized a multi-year partnership agreement with Twitch, which included the return of WWE’s official Twitch channel. This development came three years after WWE informed its superstars that were prohibited from using certain third-party social media outlets, such as Twitch. Last year, WWE rescinded that decision, allowing talent to return to Twitch, but with a few restrictions.
One of WWE’s most frequent Twitch streamers is Zelina Vega, whose channel is ran under her real name of Thea Trinidad. Speaking with Steve Fall of WrestlingNewsCo, Vega opened up about her personal relationship with the Twitch platform.
“It was something I was so reluctant to do for the longest time,” Vega said. “Saraya was trying so hard to get me into it. She’s like ‘You’d be perfect for it, you play video games anyway. You wont’ stop talking about this video game and this Pokemon, you might as well just do it on Twitch and have other like-minded people to talk to and play with.'”
“I’m like, ‘Nah, I like my space and I like to play my games alone, and whatever.’ She’s like, ‘I’m telling you, you’re going to like it. If you get past the set-up part, you’re going to love it.’ Then after suffering through that, she was right, and she usually is because she knows me so well. I ended falling in love with it once I figured out that there are crazy people like me in the world who have nine cats and love to play video games and are such 90s babies.”
Staying Genuine With Her Audience
Though she was hesitant to start her channel at first, eventually, Vega realized that it gave her an opportunity to connect with other users with similar interests. Since joining, Vega says her channel has grown immensely. More importantly, though, Vega prides herself on being genuine with her audience.
“I’m so big on being authentic, if you’re authentic, people are going to recognize that. So, you can’t just stick anybody in my position with a kitty headset and say, ‘Blah blah blah about this episode,’ and have no idea what they’re talking about, because they’ll see right through that. That was one of the major things that I told WWE initially. ‘Hey I didn’t know this was going to blow up as much as it did, but I feel there is an audience that we’re missing here,’ especially with everything going digital now. This is where ‘the kids’ are and this is where we’re going to get them. There is a way to blend the worlds.”
Fostering A Partnership Between WWE & Twitch
While Vega clearly saw the benefits of forming a relationship between WWE and Twitch, the company took a while to truly understand the dynamics. As a result, WWE seized control of their talent’s third-party platforms, which Vega was reportedly against. Shortly after the edict was put into effect in late 2020, Vega was released from the company. Luckily, Vega later returned to WWE after both parties seemingly added clarity to their prior miscommunications.
“Once [WWE] kind of figured out what I meant by that, that’s really what was missing, was the communication there, and once we talked it out and figured out, ‘Hey, this is how we can work together,’ that’s why I’m back [in the company] and why I’m back on Twitch. That’s why everything kind of worked out. It’s crazy how a conversation can change a lot of things. I just find it funny that it took so much, but now it’s become something crazy. Like me and Xavier Woods just presented an award at the Streamys. It’s like, hey, she goes from 2020, that was kind of a hard time, to now. It’s crazy to see how it’s evolved.”
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