Twitch Bans Content with Gambling Links
The well-known live streaming platform, Twitch, has recently announced that it is banning the sharing of gambling referral codes and links to any online gambling websites. This ban follows concerns that some of the bigger live streamers using the platform have been promoting unlicensed operators. This is then compounded by the fact that a large portion of the audience on Twitch is underage.
Twitch has informed all content creators on the platform that any content containing offending links will need to be removed by the 17th of August. Twitch will also continue to monitor all content for any gambling related content. Twitch discovered that many prominent Twitch Streamers were making millions of dollars by streaming crypto-gambling slot games to their viewers.
Twitch Has Underage Audience
A recent investigation was conducted by WIRED. During the investigation, it was found that one top streamer on Twitch had received between $1.4 and $1.6 million to live stream gambling content. The streamer was playing on a site called Duelbits, which is not licenced to operate or promote itself in the United States. WIRED discovered that that out of the 1000 most watched streamers, 64 streamers have streamed crypto slots, or been sponsored from crypto casinos.
Some of these streams of playing crypto slots, had over 100 000 viewers, with 21% of viewers aged between 13 and 17. However, there are many who feel Twitch has not done enough. One streamer was very critical of the measures taken by Twitch, stating they could easily be circumvented. The streamers could simply post the referral codes on other social platforms like Twitter of Linktree. Another streamer suggested that Twitch should ban gambling entirely on the platform, or at least ensure it cannot be viewed by underage viewers.
Not First Gambling Controversy on Twitch
The promotion of gambling sites on Twitch is not a new issue though. While the promotion of gambling sites reached new highs in 2021, it has been an ongoing problem for several years. Back in 2016, several streamers were in trouble for promoting gambling involving skins for video games. The streamers failed to disclose they were being paid to do so, or in some cases, even owned the gambling sites.