Pog, poggers, pogchamp… What exactly do these terms mean?
If you’re spending long hours on the internet and live streaming platforms such as Twitch— arguably the world’s leading streaming site, you might have come across these terms on numerous occasions.
Words like “Pog” and “PogChamp” have been so widely used that it has intertwined with Twitch’s popular subculture. Regardless, we’re here to shed light on what these terms exactly imply for curious beginners.
First off, let’s start with Pog’s huge context related with Twitch. One cannot separate Twitch from Pog, and vice versa. On Twitch, POG is known to stand for “Play Of the Game.”
It’s usually used in the context of a multiplayer game match up, where one player has done something so impressive that it is considered as the main highlight or “play of the game,” meaning what they’ve done is expected to clinch the victory.
Some people use it to spam in response to witnessing any good play, but it’s intended to refer to a series of moves so good it will lead to a win. Impressive, right?
Hence, “Pog” now roughly translates to “cool” or “amazing” especially when a player performs extremely well in a match. You will often see the term used in the livestreams of titular games such as Overwatch, CS:GO, and League of Legends.
The PogChamp Emote
More specifically, the term is also a reference to a related yet infamous “PogChamp” emote which essentially means the same thing. It debuted on Twitch back in 2012, featuring the iconic facial expression of vlogger/streamer Gootecks making a goofy, surprised face.
Gootecks’ image itself dates back to November 2010 when the streamer made the face in response to his camera being knocked into the midst of a stream.
The pioneering PogChamp emote is considerably one of the oldest emotes on Twitch and is a popular pick to convey excitement in stream chats. Some people use it to express shock and awe, while others spam it on the chat when a streamer does something cool.
Though the Pog trend was commonly used when something crazy good happens unexpectedly, it has been notably overused nowadays. People just use it when anything mildly “okay” happens.
The excitement slash surprise element has been famously abbreviated to “Pog” or “Poggers,” which is the reason why you see the term used more often on the internet rather than the actual emote. It has since taken off as a general meme expressing surprise over the last few years.
PogChamp Emote Controversy
In the beginning of 2021, Twitch announced it will delete the iconic PogChamp emote over ‘further violence’ thus marking the end of an era.
The decision came after the streamer depicted published tweets “encouraging further violence” following a recent riot at the US Capitol.
An official explanation was revealed in a series of tweets:
“We’ve made the decision to remove the PogChamp emote following statements from the face of the emote encouraging further violence after what took place in the Capitol today,”
“We want the sentiment and use of Pog to live on — its meaning is much bigger than the person depicted or image itself — and it has a big place in Twitch culture. However, we can’t in good conscience continue to enable use of the image.”
Although the PogChamp emote has been cancelled by the internet and the platform itself, Twitch promises to work with the community to design a new emote for the most hype moments on Twitch.
It didn’t take long for the platform to confirm it’s time to be out with the old and in with the new! As of February 2021, a Komodo dragon has been crowned as Twitch’s permanent replacement for the PogChamp emote.
The KomodoHype emote features a Komodo dragon’s face that is clearly expressing hype. Just take a good look at its shockingly huge maw that somehow seems to be smiling.
It’s relatively easy to see why it won the majority of the community vote and be hailed as the new hype emoticon of the platform.
Now that the OG age of PogChamp is considerably over, there is no need for fans to worry— only the emote is going to be changed. The spirit and the culture behind Pog will remain with the new KomodoHype.
Even if voting is now closed, which emotes could be likened or on par to that of the old PogChamp emote? Should Twitch consider other alternatives? Let us know in the comments below!