Twitch.tv testing

I did some testing today with Minecraft and the new built-in Twitch.tv features.  I didn't have great expectations, and I was pretty much spot on.  It works, but not so greatly. My gaming experience is greatly effected when I start streaming. Not to mention, the quality of the stream itself, on its default low settings, leaves a lot to be desired.

I was hoping the chat feature would be useful, say, so people could chat with me while playing.  Well, not so much.  People can chat TO me, but theres apparently no method to reply to the twitch chat.  Which is pretty damn frustrating.  The excuse I found online, is the people watching the stream would see your reply in the stream.  Great. I understand that.  But WHY do you give an option to have chat always available, whether you are broadcasting or not, that doesn't actually let you reply?  

It seems very silly to me.