Twitch recently introduced “hostile behavior and harassment rules”, today announced other changes to the platform’s policy.
Twitch changes its policy again. In short, it will punish for things that also happened outside the platform itself. All this, as the creators claim, to take better care of the users’ well-being.
As we read in the official announcement:
“Our current guidelines state that in some serious cases where there is available, verifiable evidence, we may take action against users for hateful conduct or harassment that occurs off Twitch services—meaning on social media, other online services, or even offline—when directed at members of the Twitch community.”
Of which the last words seem to be the most important. All of the fuss must ultimately be about a Twitch user. Just to rectify – it is not that someone will offend, for example, a Fortnite player and will instantly get banned on Twitch.
How is this supposed to look like?
This is best explained by Twitch themselves. TTV wants to introduce punishment for people who behave inappropriately outside of Twitch and it concerns someone from the platform, such as a streamer, partner, or viewer.
“Someone is harassed on Twitch, as well as off Twitch. When this happens, we will take into account verifiable, off-service behaviors or statements that relate to an incident that took place on Twitch. For example: if we’re reviewing a harassment report about an incident that happened live on stream, related or continued harassment on Twitter could be taken into account when reported to us. This is how our current off-service policy works in the vast majority of cases, and will not change.”
“(…) We will now enforce against serious offenses that pose a substantial safety risk to the Twitch community, even if these actions occur entirely off Twitch. “
“Taking action against misconduct that occurs entirely off our service is a novel approach for both Twitch and the industry at large, but it’s one we believe—and hear from you—is crucial to get right.”
In case of serious violations, such as threats and things that Google would find inappropriate for advertisers, Twitch may notify a third-party law firm.
“In order to be as thorough and efficient as possible in these situations, we’re bringing on a highly-regarded third party investigative partner to support our internal team with these investigations. This partner is an experienced investigations law firm that is dedicated to conducting independent workplace and campus investigations including those related to sexual discrimination or assault. “
So if someone does something wrong outside of Twitch, he can expect consequences also on Twitch itself. How will it end? It’s hard to say, the idea already does not appeal to streamers who will simply be afraid to write something offensive on Twitter.