You may have heard a lot of news surrounding Twitch’s move to “ban” the streaming of gambling sites from October 18th. As usual, the details are lost on the masses…
The world-renowned streaming platform, known to have changed the lives of gamers and pornstars alike, has announced plans to cut down on the errant sharing of unregulated gambling sites, banning all casinos without a US license or registration recognized to enforce consumer protection tools strictly.
On September 21st, Twitch took to Twitter to announce all the details…
So, what changes? Not much.
The United States online casino market is a burgeoning behemoth, headed by many brands that have already made their name in the strictly regulated European market. Despite, even, the toll COVID regulations took, New Jersey’s reported a strong recovery – with the nine casinos in that state raking in a collective $470.6 million in August, up 10.1% from the previous year.
Despite mounting controversy surrounding the sector, it continues to expand – with new markets emerging in more US regions, as well as South America and Africa.
Twitch is a domino yet to fall, but there are transparency issues that need to be worked out…
Take their superstar, xQc, for example. He regularly goes live with slot streams and places bets as high as $100,000 a spin. Unbeknownst to his viewers, the casino operator he’s playing through has funded his wager.
It is common practice for casino operators to promote their sites via popular streamers. The problem arises when viewers adopt the risky behavior on display – unaware of the fact that no real risk was taken.
Social media has birthed an age of “clout chasing”, in which people appear to forgo morality and/or common sense to gain popularity – whether globally or locally, among their peers. According to Twitch, the average age of their viewers is 21, but an estimated 20% of global users are aged between 13 and 17 – meaning there are, likely, highly impressional children (who are far too young to gamble) watching xQc drop $100,000 on a single spin.
Some streamers have a worse story to tell…
Manchester-based content creator, ItsSliker, reportedly borrowed money from other popular Twitch streamers to fund his gambling habit. Like most, he’d ask for money under false pretenses, only to lose it playing online casino games.
Once the news broke, some of Twitch’s biggest influencers – Pokimane, Mizkif and Devin Nas – planned a strike, threatening to cease uploading any of their content until all forms of gambling sponsorship were banned on the platform.
It appears Twitch has responded with the banning of Stake.com, Roobet and Duelbits, among others.