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Published: March 4, 2022

Written by: Stefan Velikov

  • New rules coming to the platform’s spam, scams, and malicious conduct policy
  • The new guidelines should not affect many streamers
  • Twitch will not enforce against one-off statements containing misinformation.

Twitch is implementing new policy changes to combat the spread of misinformation and false news on its platform.

The Streaming Platform Adds New Policies

Twitch has had many problems with spam bots spreading hate on its platform or just simply being annoying. The Amazon-owned company has before taken steps to target these malicious actors. In its latest policy update, Twitch added a misinformation clause to its existing spam, scams, and malicious content regulations. The platform aims to “prohibit harmful misinformation actors from using our services.”

Twitch said that the new rules will not impact many streamers, but only those who spread apparent misinformation through the platform. “We do not believe that individuals who use online services to spread false, harmful information, have a place in our community,” reads the update.

The streaming service is keen to point out that the new policies will likely not affect many people’s favorite streamers. “We will not enforce against one-off statements containing misinformation.”

Twitch seems to be racking down on its rules and their enforcement the past few months. Just a few weeks ago, the Amazon-owned platform implemented a new naming policy to combat inappropriate usernames.

What Does This New Update Mean Exactly?

With everyone having access to the Internet it becomes increasingly easy for people to both spread and receive false news, often posted with malicious intent. Like any other mass form of inline media, Twitch is not immune to being used in that manner.

The company said that it has partnered with over a dozen researchers and experts to understand how harmful misinformation spreads online, and ensure it mitigates its risks to their community. Twitch has identified three characteristics that all bad actors share. “Their online presence – whether on or off Twitch – is dedicated to (1) persistently sharing (2) widely disproven and broadly shared (3) harmful misinformation topics, such as conspiracies that promote violence.”

Twitch says these three criteria create the highest risk of harm including inciting real-world harm. It underlines that it will sanction only actors who meet these three criteria. It is interesting to ponder if these new policy changes have anything to do with the war in Ukraine. The war is an event characterized by mass misinformation spread, and also collectively condemned by the gaming community.

The streaming service’s update ends with Twitch saying that misinformation is not currently widespread on it, however, Twitch notes that it can spread very quickly.

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