On Tuesday, Twitch released new rules concerning the way streamers could display ads on the platform. The rules prohibited “burned in” video, display, and audio ads — the first two of which were popular and common formats used throughout Twitch. Twitch apparently did not discuss the new rules with ambassadors or streamers beforehand, and many were furious about the new policies.
Twitch content creators took to social media to decry the changes. OTK, a network of popular, high-value streamers like Asmongold, released an open letter to Twitch, telling it, “The once-unique and admirable vision of a creator-first platform now feels like a fading and distant dream.”
Charity streamers were upset and fearful, believing the new rules would impact their ability to raise money. It was the same with esports creators, as the new rules would have made it more difficult for the already struggling esports industry to monetize its broadcasts.
Twitch apologized for the rollout, explaining that it would rewrite the rules for greater clarity. Now it seems that rewrite has turned into a full rescinding of the rules totally. From the company’s Twitter thread:
Yesterday, we released new Branded Content Guidelines that impacted your ability to work with sponsors to increase your income from streaming. These guidelines are bad for you and bad for Twitch, and we are removing them immediately. Sponsorships are critical to streamers’ growth and ability to earn income. We will not prevent your ability to enter into direct relationships with sponsors – you will continue to own and control your sponsorship business. We want to work with our community to create the best experience on Twitch, and to do that we need to be clear about what we’re doing and why we’re doing it. We appreciate your feedback and help in making this change.
The new rules would have been potentially devastating for creators, charities, esports broadcasts, and brands. Now, what seemed like another attempt to take a portion of streamer earnings has backfired.