I want a PlayStation 5. I have tried on multiple occasions to acquire a PlayStation 5. I do not have a PlayStation 5. At the rate things are going, these words will likely be the first in my autobiography and on my tombstone—and perhaps yours as well. It is only right, then, that somebody has decided to immortalize our current, dire moment in song. It is only righter that the somebody in question is Claudio Sanchez, frontman of sci-fi-flavored progressive rock band Coheed and Cambria.
It’s not every day you hear about an enormous platform like Twitch swatting the face of one of its most popular emotes clean off and rendering the president’s account indefinitely inert, as it did in the aftermath of last week’s Capitol Building insurrection. But Twitch does do similar things from time to time, on a smaller scale. You just don’t hear about it. That’s a problem.
For years now, Twitch’s record for most concurrent viewers on a single streamer’s channel has been hotly contested, with streamers topping each other in slow-building increments. Today, however, Spanish streamer TheGrefg made everybody else look like they’d been wrestling for discarded peanut shells. As of writing, he topped out at nearly 2.5 million—a new all-time record that beats not just individual channels, but entire games.
Earlier this week, Twitch removed its extremely popular Pogchamp emote, which is used to express excitement in chat, after the face of the emote, Ryan “Gootecks” Gutierrez, encouraged further “civil unrest” after the insurrection at the Capitol Building. Now, just two days later, it’s replaced Gutierrez’s likeness with an elaborate plan that is, honestly, pretty poggers.
In the wake of yesterday’s violent, conspiracy-fueled insurrection at the Capitol Building, Twitch has elected to indefinitely suspend Donald Trump’s Twitch account.
Earlier this month, Republican senator Thom Tillis managed to graft an act that would turn streaming copyrighted material into a felony onto the much-debated omnibus spending bill, which also includes a paltry second covid relief check, among many other things. After even more debate (and many concessions), Congress is poised to pass the bill this evening. The felony streaming rider is still part of it, but it no longer seems to directly threaten Twitch streamers and other content creators.
It’s been yet another long 24 hours for Twitch—the latest in what’s shaped up to be an agonizingly long year for the company (and also everybody on Earth). Yesterday afternoon, Twitch held a live town hall with the goal of illuminating recent policy changes and features around DMCAs, sexual harassment, ads, and other hot-button issues. In the aftermath, however, many streamers fixated on one small portion of the two-hour presentation: Twitch’s decision to ban words like “simp,” “incel,” and “virgin”—at least, when they’re used in derogatory contexts.
Once the year 2077 rolls around, people apparently won’t bat an eyelash at unclothed dicks, breasts, and butts. In 2020, however, this is still very much an issue, especially on Twitch, where on-screen nudity frequently results in temporary or indefinite suspensions. But the platform does make exceptions for big games, with Cyberpunk 2077 being the latest to get a free pass to pair semi-gratuitous sex with its extremely gratuitous violence. This has resulted in a vast array of Twitch clips with hundreds of thousands of views that focus on sex and nudity.
The United States government is, as we all know, extremely functional. It’s so functional, in fact, that it regularly struggles to pass spending bills in order to prevent itself from shutting down. The latest “must-pass” bill, like many of its predecessors, includes controversial measures that wouldn’t be able to pass on their own, negotiated with the high stakes of this particular bill in mind. One of them would turn unauthorized streaming of copyrighted material into a felony.
Today, Twitch announced a “significant” update to its harassment and hateful conduct policies. The update takes aim at multiple blind spots in Twitch’s previous rules, adding clearer language about membership in hate groups, symbols like the Confederate flag, and sexual harassment.
Facebook Gaming is far from the biggest video game streaming platform out there, but it has at least shown a tendency to put its money where its mouth is—a practice Twitch and other industry leaders could learn from. Today, Facebook announced a program to aid Black creators in their pursuit of full-time streaming careers.
Since 2018, Twitch has had a tag system that allows streamers to categorize their broadcasts according to their content’s contents and give viewers an at-a-glance idea of what they’re about. Tags also tie into Twitch’s still-rudimentary (but increasingly prominent) recommendation system. Until very recently, “blind playthrough” was one of these official Twitch tags. Now, however, it’s not.
Today, Fortnite players battled Galactus, devourer of worlds, in the culmination of the game’s Marvel-flavored fourth season. With the event ending on a cliffhanger, the biggest boy in a fictional universe of very big boys did not end up going down. But Twitch sure did.
Last night Jagmeet Singh, leader of Canada’s New Democratic Party, challenged US Democrat Ocasio-Cortez to a streamed game of Among Us. AOC agreed, and it’s on, tonight at 4 pm PT/7 pm ET. USA vs. Canada. Pick a side.
When many of us were kids, popping open a pack of Pokémon cards and flipping to a holographic Charizard meant bragging rights or a hypothetical hundred dollars if we chose to sell it on eBay (or, in my case, if an eBay-addicted aunt could pry the card from my cold, dead hands). But now those old cards and boxes are hard to come by, caked in dust, and in a few specific cases, worth thousands. On Twitch, obtaining them has become a popular pastime.