Andy is a slang term from Twitch that is applied primarily to streamers based on their content or behavior. It is usually used as a snowclone nickname with the form “X Andy.” A popular example is “React Andy,” which is typically used for streamers that often react to other people’s content. The “Andy” snowclone came into use from multiple people named Andy appearing on Ice Poseidon’s early-to-mid 2017 Twitch streams.
The term “Andy” comes from streamer Ice Poseidon’s 2017 IRL Twitch streams. In early 2017, actor and comedian Andy Milonakis started gaining Twitch popularity from appearing on Ice Poseidon’s streams. After this, a person named Andy Martin began appearing on Ice Poseidon’s stream. Martin was dubbed “Mexican Andy” to distinguish him from Milonakis and he has been using the name since.
Soon after Milonakis and Mexican Andy appeared, Ice Poseidon and his audience began referring to people with the name “Andy.” The phenomena was explained in a reply to a June 2nd, 2018 Reddit post on the subreddit r/Twitch asking “Why are so many live-streamers on Twitch and YouTube nicknamed Andy?” User GrungeLord responded to the post, saying
Andy Milonakis was the first streamer to get big by leeching off the popularity of Ice Poseidon’s stream. So now any time a streamer gains traction by leeching off someone (usually Ice) they are nicknamed Andy.
The “Andy” name was used by Ice Poseidon and his audience as a generic term for people stream sniping, “leeching,” or appearing on stream. An example of a popular “Andy” is Asian Andy, who stream sniped Ice Poseidon in April or May 2017 and soon built his own following. A subreddit called r/AsianAndy was created on May 30th and a since-deleted clip of Asian Andy was submitted to r/LivestreamFail on May 31st.
The Andy label is also applied with a neutral or negative connotation. The earliest example is a June 23rd, 2017 Urban Dictionary definition for the name “Sitting Andy” to Milonakis (shown below).
On May 24th, 2020, Twitter user @TwitchStuff posted a list of the top ten most used “Andy” spams in the last twelve days (shown below). Variations of the “X Andy” snowclone were mentioned over a thousand times.
A quick random stats thingy, Top 10 “Andy” spam (exact message, case-insensitive) for the past 12 days
“React andy” beating just “Andy” and @andymilonakis ‘s bot spam😅
* Gonna do top channels (React Andy) combo/variations next 😛 pic.twitter.com/KwAj2L9boY
— Random Twitch stats! (DeTheBug) (@TwitchStuff) May 25, 2020
The name “React Andy” began to be used to describe Twitch streamers who react to other people’s content. On December 6th, 2018, in the Discord server of Twitch streamer xQc, Discord user Ashleyy posted “Reacting Andy ResidentSleeper” to indicate boredom at xQc reacting to content in his Media Monday streams (shown below, left). Since then, “React Andy” has been mentioned over 1,300 times in xQc’s server. Twitch streamer Sodapoppin was called a “React Andy” in his Discord server on February 13th, 2019 when Discord user Luthraxus said “Soda became React andy FeelsWeirdMan” (shown below, right).