Article Thumbnail

The Controversial World of Alinity, the Twitch and OnlyFans Chaos Queen

No stranger to the old adage ‘any press is good press,’ Alinity has long leveraged controversy to build her brand. But as she opens up about her struggles with mental health, a new, softer side of her is starting to show

Twitch streamer Alinity is no stranger to controversies. In fact, there are so many about her that there are multiple explainer articles about them, each of which break them down, detail by excruciating detail. To start, there’s the claim that she’s an animal abuser. Thanks to the way she’s treated her cats on livestream — spitting vodka into their mouths, chucking them across the room, sitting on them, the list goes on — and her relationship with her dog (someone on Reddit even compiled a video of clips to prove that “Alinity trained her dog to eat out”) — she’s widely accused of mistreating her pets, and has even been the subject of an SPCA investigation (though it found no evidence of abuse). There’s also the time she faced backlash for calling a waiter “racist” without justification, a move that could have threatened his livelihood. Furthermore, the 33-year-old has had a number of “feuds” with other Twitch streamers — including PewDiePie (she threatened to copystrike one of his videos) and Ninja (who she fought on Twitter with) — though both of these have since been resolved.

Arguably, it’s these controversies — which happened between 2017 and 2021 — that have made Alinity (whose real name is Natalia Mongollon) so notorious in the streaming world. As of today, she has over 250,000 followers on Twitter, 422,000 on Instagram, and is a constant fixture on Google Trends. 

It hasn’t always been about drama, though. Alinity quickly gained a following when she joined Twitch back in 2012, and, for the better part of a decade since then, she’s been live-streaming herself playing games like World of Warcraft, Apex Legends and Overwatch, dancing, doing yoga and generally “just chatting” to people online. In March 2021, Alinity took advantage of her mammoth following — 1.5 million on Twitch alone — and joined OnlyFans, where she allegedly made as much money in two months as she would in 10 years of streaming.

Born in Colombia, Alinity moved to Canada after falling in love with someone she met on World of Warcraft. The pair have since split up, but their marriage has been labeled fake by viewers, who jumped on a comment she made about divorcing him after gaining Canadian citizenship. Though she was presumably joking, over 16,000 people signed a petition calling for Alinity to be deported. While the Canadian government doesn’t seem to have responded, Alinity did tweet: “To the people reporting me to Canadian immigration because of my comment with my friend. The divorce was initiated by my ex because of something he did. I signed the papers and we split amicably with zero assets.”

“I had no problem leaving my friends and family,” she previously said of the move to Canada. “It felt like everybody else was just so much better at dealing with life. They seemed so strong, and I seemed so weak.” Alinity explained that although the move went well and she settled into Canadian culture quickly, she soon found herself experiencing a “really bad depression.” This subsequently influenced her decision to choose nursing school over medical school, as she was plagued by self-doubt and didn’t feel “good enough” to study medicine.

It was during her second year of studying nursing at Canada’s University of Saskatchewan that she started streaming. “I did both at the same time for a little while,” she tells me. “But when the income I was making on Twitch surpassed what I would be making as a nurse, I decided to put my studies on hold to see where Twitch would lead. I didn’t really know if it was going to be something that would last, but I figured I could always go back to school, whereas opportunities like Twitch are once in a lifetime.”

When she began streaming, Alinity says she didn’t do it with the aim of becoming famous or earning money — back then, streaming as a “job” wasn’t even “a thing.” It was just “something a few people did for fun to have a good time with strangers over the internet,” she says. “I was the second partnered female streamer on the platform (being a partner enables you to earn more revenue). I didn’t expect anything starting out, but the reality of what came was nothing I could have ever imagined.”

Although female streamers are increasingly popular on Twitch — Bloomberg reports that in April 2021, there were eight women in the top 200 streamers, up from three the previous year — as of 2021, they still make up just 33 percent of streamers in the U.S. Unsurprisingly, this landscape has sparked a number of challenges for women on the platform. “There are lots of stereotypes, gatekeeping and judgments, as well as the [demand] that I conform to some sort of norms and standards in order to not be labeled [negatively],” she says. 

Alinity tries to ignore this kind of abuse, but it’s not always easy — like other female streamers, she’s been doxxed online, has had “fans” show up to her house and has received death threats. The best thing, she says, is to roll with the punches and move on. “I can’t change how people think,” she says. “I don’t have the time or energy to deal with sexism — I just ban or block, and move on with my life. I’ve sort of gotten used to it after nine years of streaming, and I do feel like things have gotten better as Twitch has become more mainstream.”

Still, this defiant attitude hasn’t always helped the harassment — which is likely a mix of fair criticism about the aforementioned controversies and misogynistic threats — run like water off her back. “I hid my feelings and the impact the harassment had on me for a long time,” she says. “I didn’t realize how important it was to show people my vulnerability and be open about how bad my mental health was.” 

Since coming to this realization, Alinity has spoken out a number of times about the impact of online harassment, even crying during a livestream about the abuse she experiences on a daily basis. “This made things change greatly,” she says. “People started seeing me as a human who makes mistakes, rather than some evil, calculative person.” 

She’s also been vocal about her long-term mental health issues, which she’s struggled with since she was 14. In a 2017 video, she addressed her experiences with eating disorders, bipolar and depression. “They say, ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,’ and that’s very true for me,” she adds. Many people reacted positively to Alinity’s honesty, thanking her for speaking out and therefore helping others, and urging her to look after herself. 

Last month, Alinity celebrated her one-year OnlyFans anniversary — the latest challenge in her repertoire. “OnlyFans [had been reaching] out to me for a while,” she says. “After hearing how much they thought I could be making, I realized it was too good of an opportunity to pass.” As well as partially nude photos and videos, she also caters to her fans’ seemingly collective foot fetish. The response has been mixed, with some describing her content as “great” and “fire,” while others have lambasted her for not posting full nudes (though they also encourage leaking her photos, so their criticism should be taken lightly, if at all). Besides, judging by her monetary success, she is having no trouble finding support on OnlyFans.

As it turns out, it’s hard to please the masses on Twitch (and OnlyFans, for that matter), but — maybe until her next controversy — at least Alinity is keeping them on their toes.