Twitch delays new guidelines over clarity concerns


Twitch has delayed the enforcement of its new guidelines designed to target harassment and toxic content until March 5.

The delay, announced via Twitch’s Twitter feed, follows complaints from Twitch’s community of streamers that parts of the new guidelines were too vague. Acknowledging those concerns, Twitch said: “Thanks for all your insightful feedback on our new Community Guidelines! It’s important they’re clear to everyone and we need to better explain some sections, so we’re pushing back enforcement to start March 5. We’ll release an updated FAQ before then.”

One section of the new guidelines that the Twitch community has particularly railed against is the stipulation that Twitch streamers should be held responsible for “The consequences of their statements and actions of their audiences.” Forsen, one of Twitch’s top streamers who is known for having a rowdy fan-base, said in a stream:“Creators should consider the consequences of their statements and the actions of their audiences? No, no, no, no. You cannot have both. I can watch what I say. I cannot watch what my community does.”

Forsen added that he has been in conversation with Twitch, in an attempt to get them to clarify the new rules. And the new rules defining what streamers can and cannot wear have also attracted resistance. Streamer AngelFaceDGAF, for example, tweeted somewhat ungrammatically: “Ive wore this outfit in public several times. I didn’t buy it to stream in. So according to their “new guidelines” I didn’t break any rules.” 

The new guidelines were bound to encounter resistance among Twitch streamers who rely on controversy to generate their followings, and it’s difficult to have too much sympathy for such people. But clearly, Twitch has acknowledged that the guidelines need further clarification, and it will be interesting to see what the company decides to tweak before enforcing them on March 5. We will, of course, keep  you fully informed.