Twitch Gambling Ban Decision Explained

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Latest news reported that the famous streaming service, Twitch, has announced a major policy change that affects users who are streaming slots, roulette or dice games from unlicensed operators. However, rumours around gambling streaming were up for years. SlotsCalendar experts will break down the entire history between Twitch and casino streams, as well as the event that caused the gambling ban.

The Year When It All Begins

After the entire gaming streaming section exploded, providing success for many users, a few casino enthusiasts and streamers saw the opportunity as a blessing. Two most-followed streamers, Casino Daddy and Roshtein, began this trend of streaming slots in 2016.

As their streaming became quickly successful, a channel, CasinoGrounds, which also became a “to-go” hub for many slots streamers, started a community exclusively dedicated to those who streamed casino games.

According to Roshtein’s official website, the streaming casino section on Twitch provided a cosy and private space for those who found entertainment playing video slots. He also claimed that a few streamers encouraged him to follow his passion.

Given that the casino streaming scene was getting too much attention, Twitch has tried to change the policy on one form of gambling – skin betting.

It all happened after Counter-Strike: Global Offensive developer Valve sent several notices to stop alleged illegal activity on skin betting sites. As a response, Twitch alarmed users to stop the streams that were promoting those specific sites.

More Worldwide Recognition

At the end of 2018, the casino gaming sector has begun to get maximum attention and interest from a large audience. For that reason, in September of that year, the streaming platform developed a specific category designated for casino gaming. According to TwitchTracker, the section attracted over 4,500 viewers per day as it included 18 different channels.

More Worldwide Recognition

Due to the increasing number of viewers – to be more specific more than 10,000 viewers per day – in December 2018, the service created a separate category for slots that got almost 5 million combined hours of viewership.

Given those impressive numbers, the section also rapidly becomes a subject of controversy. Several concerning articles claimed that the section has poor age filters and it is a real danger for children who access the platform and also promotes unlicensed operators.

SlotsCalendar Advice: When you play at licensed casinos, there are no concerns regarding underage gambling or safety matters. As these casinos have to comply with strict rules, there are advanced technologies to offer protection to players and minors alike. 

Influential Names Join The Streaming Ride

Even after those tough accusations, the streaming focused on casino gaming still reached a peak point, with its monthly viewing hours as they were doubling in 2019. Gambling giants like PokerStars developed an in-client integration that allowed players to bind their Twitch account with the PokerStars account.

On the other side, controversy continued. Even if casino channels were getting rapidly on the top of the growing channels list on the platform, as it gained more than half a million new followers in 30 days, many fans started to question the numbers.

The Major Impact of The Pandemic

As the world struggled with a deadly virus in 2020, casino streaming got even more attention. As many other ways of entertaining were unavailable, the online casinos and the streaming sector experienced massive growth. More specific attention was given to online casino game streamings.

The Major Impact of The Pandemic

Many streamers raised money for Covid relief charities, yet the most notable remains the amount that Kim Hultman raised in the 24-hours streaming challenge. Those hours raised €47,000 worth of charities.

Many surveys were unfolding that year. In July 2020, researchers discovered that 4.1% of respondents in a sample of 1,081 UK adults claimed that they enjoyed live streaming of a player betting online in the past 12 months.

As money was raised for a real cause, no one blamed streamed gambling at the moment. Moreover, at the end of that year, the streaming platform presented some “predictions, ” including a free-to-play feature. This new feature supposed that users could use bet points on the outcomes of games that will be streamed. The prediction undoubtedly suggested a bit of sympathy for the gambling section.

2021: The Year That Started To Change Everything

In early 2021, the streaming community and online casinos alike became even more aware of the opportunities present in casino games.

Many businesses took advantage of the new channel, including Acroud, which claimed they were about to build a new streaming community. Here will be included players who want to grow their channel.

At the same time, famous video game streamers like Felix ‘xQc’ Lengyel and Tyler ‘Trainwreckstv’ Niknam signed sponsorship deals with bitcoin casinos and other casinos powered by cryptocurrencies.

The Controversy Took Off Again In June 2021

Discussions on casino streaming on Twitch began again in June 2021, when a well-known streamer, Lengyel, announced his followers that he would stop gambling streams. The reason behind this decision was that the streamer himself started to become “slightly, if not moderately, addicted” to gambling activities.

There were also discussions between content creators who argued that streamers use funds provided entirely by casinos. They even claimed that content creators use forged balances to avoid the risk of losing their own money.

At the same time, had become the most promoted operator on the streaming service. Even though the online casino is licensed only in Curacao, it accepts customers from other markets.

Moreover, the Twitch community started to take action against the rise of casino games on the platform. Two leading streamers, Zack “Asmongold” Breen and Imane “Pokimane” Anys, criticised the increasing number of popular streamers who chose to sign casino deals and asked for a complete ban on these games.

Gambling Earnings Exposed In July 2021

Platform users were about to find out how much money was involved in the casino streaming after Adin Ross, a beloved streamer, broadcasted his direct messages with Duelbits casino. The messages included an offer worth $1.6m a month for the streamers; instead, his response to the deal was that he got a better deal with Roobet casino.

After this reveal, another user, Niknam, revealed live that he received $1 million monthly from promoting casino and slot sites.

The First Major Change Happened In August 2021

Starting on 17 August, Twitch took action, restricting links or referral codes for all sites that offer slots, roulette, or dice games.

In a creator update, the provider said that they want “To prevent harms and scams created by questionable services that sponsor content on Twitch, we will prohibit sharing links and referral codes to sites that offer slots, roulette, or dice games.”

After this statement, many other gaming businesses took advantage and launched a new streaming platform. This new platform included an age-gating system and more protection features to make sure streamers were safer than ever. They wanted to make sure that their content was delivered in the proper context to the right audience.

The Twitch ban indeed had an immediate impact on slot streams, but it did not eliminate the section. Slots streams hit in October 2021 with 18.3 million hours watched, which was still more than the total a year earlier.

Viewership Members Started Rising Again In 2022

In March 2022, slot viewing hours increased on Twitch and hit a new peak of 36.3 million, beating the level reached before the link ban.

The gambling section gained even more viewers when Lengyel returned to streaming casino games. That month, a signed petition asked Twitch advertisers to try a new ban on promoting gambling activities on the service.

The summer of 2022 showed that casino streams became one of the top 10 categories on Twitch, overtaking famous game streams like Call of Duty: Warzone and Dota.

Moreover, the section became even more popular after Drake, a well-known hip-hop superstar, joined the streaming space. He signed a deal of undisclosed size with We can say the partnership was quite successful as Drake’s second stream brought in more than 112,000 concurrent viewers.

However, authorities pursued Twitch to take action against gambling on their platform. As a response, the live streaming platform owned by Inc. has announced in a statement on Twitter that starting with October 18, a ban will “prohibit streaming of gambling sites that include slots, roulette, or dice games that aren’t licensed either in the U.S. or other jurisdictions that provide sufficient consumer protection.”

You should know that the band does not include sports betting or fantasy sports such as fantasy football or poker.

What influenced the decision?

Even if there were constant facts influencing Twitch’s decision on gambling streamings, one recent event was considered the final straw.

According to an article posted by The Verge, Abraham “Sliker” Mohamed, a famous streamer, admits that he had tricked fans and other content creators into donating at least $200,000 for his gambling activities. The streamer admitted during a stream that he is addicted to gambling in the game Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, thus scamming followers to feed his addiction.

This event triggered the discussion on gambling streams on Twitch, highlighting the fact that it may lead to dishonest behaviour by streamers and could have terrible consequences for the platform’s younger users.

Due to this new “scandal”, Twitch made that statement banning any gambling streams if unlicensed sites power them.

What happens now?

As the new ban will be enforced only on 18th October 2022, its effects will only be seen then. Right now, it is difficult to understand what constitutes a proper level of regulation or which casino sites are misleading. However, before the ban gets active, Twitch promised to offer more clarity on the specifics.

In the meantime, other streaming companies await to take advantage of this ban and create a new streaming platform focused on gambling. They will probably create a more equipped platform to handle all the issues that Twitch encountered over the years.

SlotsCalendar Advice: Until slots and online gambling content get banned you can get proper information and understand the gambling world better by following SlotsCalendar on Twitch. That’s where we also pick the winners for our giveaways. So stay tuned.

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