Meet the people getting paid $50k a month to film themselves sleeping.

In the ever-evolving world of online influencing, it seems anything goes. We consume content about literally everything, from the wild to mundane. 

One of the most popular types of content is simply watching other people do things. We watch people cook, clean, exercise, eat, play, go to the doctors, get dressed and do their makeup

If we can watch it live, well, even better.  In fact, live streaming has become one of the most popular types of video content consumed online, reaching almost a third of all internet users.  Its popularity even prompted the launch of dedicated live streaming service, Twitch

But if watching people go about their daily routine wasn't enough, these days we're watching people sleep, too.

Yep, you read that right. 

While we’re up, unable to sleep, sleep-fluencers are doing quite the opposite, and making money in the process – while we watch on enviously. 

What is a sleep-fluencer (or sleep-streamer)?

As the name suggests, a sleep-fluencer or sleep-streamer live streams themselves sleeping, while viewers... view them. 

There are two types of sleep-influencers. 

The first keeps things simple, literally live streaming themselves peacefully sleeping, sometimes for hours at a time. Usually, they’ll be sleeping at nighttime (when most people are asleep), giving insomniacs something to aspire to.

The other type is a little more disturbing. Their streams are both live and interactive, meaning they’ll attempt to go to sleep, but they'll do so in a room fitted with booby-traps that can be triggered by paying viewers.


What happens depends on how much the viewer pays – lights might be turned on, loud music blared, and in some cases a sleep-fluencer may receive an electric shock.

In other words, vieers will be watching sleep deprivation live in action.

Why do people watch?

When it comes to the first type of sleep-fluencer – the peaceful sleeper – clinical psychologist Phoebe Rogers says viewers may be longing for connection. 

"I think we all have a longing for connection, and a voyeur part or curious part of us who wants to have insight into the life of another," Rogers says.

"It may fill a need for belonging, connection, or intimacy – sleep is quite an intimate thing. It may also fill a void of loneliness or disconnection. For a lot of people, it can feel easier to connect in the online space than in real life."

For others, especially those who struggle to sleep, watching someone else in peaceful slumber may be soothing or calming.

"It can serve as a form of white noise or visual relaxation, helping them unwind and de-stress," says psychotherapist Karen Phillip.

"Some viewers may experience ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) or simply find it relaxing to watch someone sleep. There might be a fascination with observing how different people sleep, their sleep positions, or any unique habits they have during sleep."


For those who enjoy watching or participating in sleep deprivation, their reasons for doing so may be a little different. 

"It's a more socially acceptable outlet for a less socially acceptable behaviour," says Rogers.

"Frightening, disturbing, or hurting others... we have permission to do it, and doing so may serve some of our own emotions."

According to Phillip, viewer motivation could range from mild curiosity to sadism.

"They may be interested in understanding the effects of sleep deprivation on an individual’s behaviour and wellbeing," she says. This type of viewer is likely to check in occasionally, rather than be a regular. 

"Some viewers may be interested in the sleeper’s reactions and responses to being awakened unexpectedly. This could be a form of voyeurism, where they derive satisfaction from observing the emotional and physical distress, and response of the sleeper."

Some viewers may do so because they have a domination fetish, and more disturbing reasons for tuning in may include sadistic tendencies or a desire for power and control.

"Viewers may derive satisfaction from the distress caused by continuously ringing the alarm or disrupting the sleeper's rest. This could be related to a desire for control over others. Watching someone's sleep being repeatedly disturbed allows the viewer to exercise control and manipulate the sleeper's experience."

So, how much cash are they making?

Generally, streamers can earn anywhere between $50 and $30,000 per month, for between five and 10,000 views per month.


Big-time streamers will earn even more.

Sleep-fluencers are growing in popularity, with Twitch now giving sleep its own category under its IRL page, which encompasses its non-gaming channels.

Twitch influencer Amouranth, whose real name is Kaitlyn Siragusa, recently told The Iced Coffee Hour podcast that streams of her calmly sleeping brought in thousands of dollars. If viewers convert to her OnlyFans account, those earnings could be as high as $27,000 (AUD).

Australian sleep-fluencer Jakey Boehm makes his money from TikTok, bringing in around $50,000 per month from viewers willing to pay to disturb his sleep.

@jakeyboehm Chrissy wake up! I don’t like this! Chrissy wake up and join my live stream #chrissywakeup ♬ original sound - Jakey Boehm

Up to 8,000 people watch Boehm at any one time as he attempts to sleep on TikTok.

Is it worth it?

If you’re thinking about jumping on the bandwagon, you might want to reconsider. Sure, you could make a few dollars, but experts say the cons outweigh the pros. 

"Financially, there (may be) a positive, but it sounds like hard work. In some influencers' cases, it may serve as avoidance and distraction, and stop them facing their real life," says Rogers.

"I would suggest that being an online influencer of any sort is balanced with nurturing real-life connections, and that it faciliates good mental health that includes physical exercise and engaging in work and relationships that provide meaning, purpose and a sense of competency. 


"Maybe it's an okay side hustle, rather than the centrepiece of your life."

As for sleep-deprivation influencers, Rogers says their mental health could be compromised.

"I imagine you become exposed to the real side of humanity – one that is more cruel or superficial – and that could absolutely impact how you see the world. You may feel used or exploited, and I imagine the money paid would need to be worthwhile."

And don’t forget the total lack of privacy that comes with live streaming, especially when you’re asleep.

"We don’t know what we do, say or how we act when asleep; therefore, allowing thousands of others into our room during our sleep, when we are most vulnerable, can have a detrimental mental effect on their life," says Phillip.

Quality sleep is vital for maintaining physical health, mental wellbeing, and overall life satisfaction, says Phillip, so any live streaming should be balanced with solid sleeping.

"Sleep is not a luxury; it is a biological necessity," she says.

"It plays a fundamental role in various aspects of physical, mental and emotional health.

“Chronic sleep deprivation has been linked to an increased risk of chronic health conditions, poor immune function, poor memory and learning, and reduced problem-solving capacity.”

Feature image: Getty

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