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Twitch bans some gambling content after an outcry from streamers

A Twitch logo is seen on the screen of a tablet in this 2019 photo.
Martin Bureau
AFP via Getty Images
A Twitch logo is seen on the screen of a tablet in this 2019 photo.

Some gambling content has been banned from Twitch after one of its streamers reportedly stole tens of thousands of dollars from fans and fellow streamers in order to fuel a gambling habit.

The streaming giant, which is owned by Amazon, said in a statement on Tuesday that it would prohibit content that included "slots, roulette, or dice games that aren't licensed either in the U.S. or other jurisdictions that provide sufficient consumer protection."

Streams focused on sports betting, fantasy sports, and poker will still be permitted on Twitch.

"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," the company said. "While we prohibit sharing links or referral codes to all sites that include slots, roulette, or dice games, we've seen some people circumvent those rules and expose our community to potential harm."

The policy change will affect sites including Stake.com, Rollbit.com, Duelbits.com, and Roobet.com, but the company said it may identify others that would be prohibited.

Twitch vowed to share the full language of the policy update before it takes effect on October 18.

The news comes after several Twitch streamers threatened to boycott the platform after a streamer known as Sliker, whose real name is Abraham Mohammed, reportedly misled people into giving him at least $200,000 to gamble, Kotaku reported.

Mohammed said during a stream on Saturday that he became addicted to gambling in the game Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. "Don't touch it, man," he warned viewers about gambling.

Among those who called on Twitch to scrap betting content was Imane Anys, the popular streamer known as Pokimane.

"[W]e did it y'all," Anys tweeted on Tuesday shortly after Twitch's announcement. "[P]ublic pressure, tweets, raising awareness, it all matters."

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Joe Hernandez
[Copyright 2024 NPR]

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