Twitch, a streaming site, faced calls for a one-day blackout on June 24. Users and viewers were requested to switch off for up to 24 hours. Recently, this site has faced controversies amid allegations of harassment and sexual abuse made amongst gamers.
Our previous research has revealed, that Twitch added 3.5 million new streamers this year and recorded a growth of 87% YTD (year-to-date). However, this incident may derail that growth if the allegations are true.
What is the Twitch blackout?
The entities behind the blackout urge Twitch viewers and streamers to boycott the platform. They insist on the boycott to respond to what they term as a sluggish response to claims of sexual abuse and harassment made towards several of its users.
A few of the popular streamers have faced harassment allegations from many women. Although Twitch issued a statement about these claims, some of the users are not contented by that apology.
People behind the blackouts want to compel Twitch CEO Emmett Shear to take stern action against members implicated in sexual harassment and related incidents. A tweet from Third Artifact read:
‘We are asking streamers of all sizes to WITHHOLD FROM STREAMS ON WED 6/24 12 am – 11:59 pm. MAKE THEM NOTICE. Use #twitchblackout’
Also, there is a petition calling upon Shear to act accordingly and it has attracted 2,000 signatures so far. The petition reads:
We have been hearing story upon harrowing story from streamers & associates on Twitch…women &men outing people publicly for their behavior. ‘Partnered streamers who have been outed…are being investigated, but they have not been suspended despite the countless cases racking up against them. People have been banned for less than this immediately.
Twitch responded via Twitter after the petition was activated launching complaints against the company’s lack of action:
CEO Shear took to social media on June 23 to share a copy of an email that he sent to all his staff about that sensitive situation. He acknowledged that he was aware of these complaints. In the email, he said that multiple important conversations have been happening in the past several days.
For now, all eyes are on Twitch and its CEO awaiting to see what action they will take after the blackout.