Cheer Gurl may be her name, but she's more of a rallying cry. This part-time TikToker, full-time streamer has little desire for the high-pitched jolt that her name insinuates.
"Chaotic positivity" is her brand. She embodies this through a penchant for quick-witted, sharp-tongued assaults aimed at the malcontent gaming boys you'd find on any online game. With more than 320,000 followers to her name, this gentile firebrand is looking to reform the gaming space one clapback at a time.
"I never thought I was going to be a full-time creator. I don't think it ever crossed my mind until my 9-to-5 job got really stressful," Cheer, who asked to remain anonymous, said in a phone interview with Lifewire. "[I] can't wrap my head around the fact that so many people follow me."
- Name: Cheer Gurl
- Age: 31
- Located: Brooklyn, New York
- Random Delight: From tripod to joysticks and back again. Cheer doesn't see herself trading in her photography equipment for the sake of her digital persona. She invests a portion of her time into a wedding photography business, maintaining a sense of normalcy at all times.
- Quote: "Everything happens for a reason."
Finding the Right Outlet
The Jersey Shore is where she calls home. The piers and boardwalks that symbolized an iconic moment in trash TV were actually the backdrops to her life. A "Sicilian Leo from New Jersey" is how Cheer describes herself and remarks this combination is what created the backtalking, fearless woman we see today.
She recalls happy memories with her little sister and grandmother though she's notably hush-hush about the rest of her family. The online world was an escape from the traumas of daily life she experienced as a young cancer survivor.
Other kids may have been knee-deep in the latest YouTube shenanigans, but Cheer was the kind of adolescent who spent her time reblogging #relatable Tumblr posts and perusing the digital dairies of LiveJournal.
Working as a full-time content creator online now is a kind of full-circle moment for the young creative. A reality she said she would never have imagined. Her first love was photography, but the pandemic brought her decade-long career to a screeching halt. She found herself bored and tempted.
"I hated video games. I always just thought they were a waste of time and never understood the draw," Cheer said. "My partner was playing Warzone every day, and after three months of being in the house… if you can't beat them, then join them."
Her online demeanor was forged in the warzone of 2010s-era Tumblr, where petty cancellations, community in-fighting, and drawn-out fandom wars were commonplace. Dealing with a few insults tossed by screeching gamers on Call of Duty was child's play for the hardened digital warrior. In fact, she saw it as an opportunity.
"I've always been the [person] that was like you can't say that, and I'm going to tell you why. I'm going to insult you but also seek to educate you. So, gaming wasn't a culture shock. It was more of an outlet for me to do what I love doing: telling men they're stupid," she said.
A Influential Voice
It was the female streamers she discovered on TikTok that inspired her to seek out streaming as both a viewer and creator. They showed her that there was community to be found in this space and that her gift for gab could be a benefit.
Cheer's streamer trajectory hit a quick incline. She ascended to Twitch Affiliate within five days and made Twitch Partner not too long after: a rarity for new streamers. It was thanks in large part, she says, to community support. Fellow streamer and now friend Squid0044 was her biggest inspiration and cheerleader.
She quickly rose on TikTok, which remains her largest platform, and Twitch slowly followed. Being older allowed Cheer to navigate this newfound notoriety.
"I can't even imagine having done this at 25. I wouldn't be making smart choices. I'm glad I got into it when I did because I know how to set firm boundaries, and I know myself," she said.
I've always been the [person] that was like you can't say that, and I'm going to tell you why.
She affectionately calls her community "a bunch of little gay people inside my phone" and prides herself on cultivating this welcoming space for women and LGBTQ+ audiences on a platform that has historically been exclusionary.
"The worst people are the loudest, which is what I try to fight against by giving my community the courage and knowledge to speak up against it. I'm giving [the people on the game] the same energy back, but in a positive way," she ended. "I know I stand for good things, and I'm hoping to be an influence to people not only in-game but in real life too. Use your voice."