Twitch’s ban hammer is mighty (pic: Flickr/Twitch)

Twitch’s heavy duty ban hammer has come under question recently, which has prompted the company to begin reworking their system.

Although Twitch is happy to ban even some of its biggest stars the whole process has always been handled strangely, as they never tell anyone, including the streamer, what the ban is actually for.

Angela Hession, Twitch’s vice president of health and safety, recently discussed the current state of bans on the platform with the Washington Post, and how it intends to overhaul the process in the future.

These issues have been raised over the last few months due to high profile bans like Dr. Disrespect and Destiny, for which no reason was given. Others, like the popular Adin Ross, had multiple different offences he could’ve been banned for but it was never made clear which one was the final cause.

The banning issue has been brewing for years, as smaller streamers like TheDanDangler and Abelina Sabrina Rios were banned for peculiar reasons like inappropriate attire or reading an adult book to an adult audience. 

However, Twitch were praised for quick actions on taking down the stream of the Buffalo shooter earlier this month, in which they managed to find, ban and remove any video of the hate crime from their platform.

This took them two minutes. However, the video still got out, eventually finding its way onto other social media.

The article presses Hession on the situation, where she explains that Twitch’s policy has been incorporating the wider internet usage of its bigger streamers. For instance, if a feud were to spill from Twitter to Twitch, Hession’s team would begin to take that into consideration. 

Hession mentions that they will begin to add more detail to Twitch’s ban notifications, which, so far, have been vague at best. Adin Ross was given a suspension for his use of slurs, but it was unclear for a long while when and what he said exactly.

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For TheDanDangler, her ‘inappropriate attire’ was a swimsuit in the popular hot tub section, where the streams have been specifically labelled as containing swimwear. 

The two most notorious bans, of Destiny and Dr. Disrespect, have yet to be explained in any way, with Destiny being left in the dark as to which piece of content of his triggered a permanent ban. 

For a long time, Dr. Disrespect claimed not to know why he was banned, although when he did discover the reason he sued Twitch – although the two settled out of court and the explanation was never made public.

Both streamers are now on YouTube, which uses bots to issue bans. These mostly relate to copyright infringement, with content that’s deemed harmful to others – hate speech and the like – can often still remain on the platform.

Twitch has begun adding the option for users to submit an appeal to begin the process of retrieving their account, which alongside the updates to how they notify users should ease the unbanning process in the future. 

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