Twitch has finally responded to ongoing backlash regarding the ever-growing gambling category on the streaming platform.
On Twitter, Twitch announced that gambling streams will be prohibited starting October 18. Streams with slots, roulette, and dice games on sites that aren’t licensed in the United States are not allowed on the site any longer. This includes Rollbit, Duelbits, Roobet, and Stake, among others Twitch will identify as time goes on. Sports betting, fantasy sports, and poker will continue to be allowed on Twitch.
“We’ll share specifics on the updates to our gambling policy soon, including the full policy language, to make sure everyone is clear on our new rules before they take effect on October 18,” Twitch said in a statement.
Why did Twitch ban gambling streams?
Twitch banned gambling streams due to a number of controversies on the platform and sustained fan outcry.
Gambling has been rising in popularity due to prominent streamers like Felix “xQc” Lengyel hosting slot broadcasts and the like for thousands of young fans. The streaming community started to voice concern over xQc’s stream, saying he was influencing his fans to also become addicted to gambling.
Despite the backlash, xQc continued to gamble, even admitting to losing millions in the process. But while xQc said he could “afford” to be mentally ill, other streamers apparently couldn’t. More and more streamers were coming forward about their gambling debts, including ItsSliker, who stated he owed hundreds of thousands to streamers.
With the issue ongoing, popular influencers like Imane “Pokimane” Anys and Matthew “Mizkif” Rinaudo discussed going on strike until Twitch finally addressed the issue. Despite Twitch claiming that it would do something about the gambling category, the platform remained largely silent aside from prohibiting referral codes and link sharing.
A hashtag started to trend on Twitter, with Pokimane and Mizkif stating that Twitch would be forced to listen since viewers and streamers both cared about the issue. With the threat of their most popular streamers going on strike near the holidays, Twitch most likely felt some pressure to finally make a statement regarding the controversy.
“Gambling content on Twitch has been a big topic of discussion in the community, and something we’ve been actively reviewing since our last policy update in this area,” Twitch claimed in their update.
The streaming community is currently calling the update a W.