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Twitch is the biggest name in live-streaming. Launched in June 2011, Twitch quickly became the go-to home for video game streamers, growing to tens of millions of monthly viewers within just a few years. Amazon acquired the company in 2014, offering the commerce giant a powerful competitor to YouTube, with an audience the Google-owned video platform has struggled to reach. Twitch is best known for being home to Fortnite streamers like Ninja and Tfue; e-sports like Overwatch and League of Legends; and new phenomena, including Grand Theft Auto V role-playing. It’s also expanded beyond games to include activities like social eating and musical performances.

Twitch is dropping its feature that lets you pay real money to pin posts in chat.

The feature just launched in June, but Twitch is removing it “based on community feedback” starting November 15th, according to a support document. However, Twitch partners and affiliates can allow viewers to pin cheers, which are special chat messages purchased with Bits (Twitch’s virtual currency).

A GIF demonstrating what Twitch’s Hype Chats look like in a Twitch chat window.
GIF: Twitch
What year is it?

Fortnite has gone back in time, and Ninja has more than 76,000 people watching him, DrLupo, CouRageJD, and timthetatman squad up for the new season. Ninja is nearing hour 23 of his Twitch stream.

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Twitch is going to let permanently suspended users apply to be reinstated.

The company is also getting rid of one-day and three-day suspensions in favor of a system of two warnings and then a seven-day suspension. Twitch detailed the changes in a new blog post.

Discord also recently announced some changes to its moderation practices, including giving out warnings instead of permanent bans.

Nothing, Forever is currently nothing, forever.

The AI-generated Seinfeld-like Twitch show (which was briefly banned for transphobic content) is, as I write this, completely silent, as spotted by a Twitter user Friday morning.

I reached out to Skyler Hartle, a co-creator of the project that I spoke to earlier this year, to ask what might be going on, but I haven’t heard back.

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Twitch is starting to roll out its tool that will let streamers stop banned users from watching their streams.

You can read more about the feature on a Twitch support page. Twitch said in August the feature would be arriving in September, so the company is a bit behind schedule on delivering the feature.

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More layoffs at Twitch.

The job cuts hit Twitch’s customer experience organization, according to Amazon cut “just over” 400 jobs at Twitch earlier this year. Zach Bussey, who covers Twitch closely, says Tuesday’s cuts are “significantly smaller” than that round of layoffs.

Roll for initiative.

The phenomenal cast of Baldur’s Gate 3 is now live on Twitch playing a Dungeons and Dragons one shot as their characters. I don’t typically watch D&D actual plays, (sorry Critical Role fans) but I will be present and seated for this because I love all my murder hobo companions and I can’t get enough of them.

Post your Twitch clips right to TikTok.

Twitch launched the ability to edit vertical clips in its clips editor in May, and starting this week, you’ll be able to publish those clips directly to TikTok from the editor. Seems like a handy way to save a few steps.

Ninja has permission to multistream, Twitch’s CEO says.

Twitch’s terms of service only allow “simulcasting” on “Twitch-like” services with written permission, and CEO Dan Clancy confirmed that Ninja is cleared to do so. “We don’t have any problem with what Ninja is doing right now,” Clancy said.

Ninja often streams across multiple platforms at the same time. He has the leverage to be able to do so — Ninja, one of the biggest streamers out there, will be fine whether he can stream on Twitch or not — but it’s still interesting to see that Twitch is actually giving multistreaming permission to at least one person.

Twitch is making it easier to keep assholes out of your streams.

Twitch will soon allow streamers to block banned users from watching their streams. Twitch streamer Lowco reported that the new feature will be showing up in creators’ settings in September. Currently, bans only remove them from chat.

Bad actors can still circumvent this by signing out of a banned account, as it’s not an IP ban. But Trevor Fisher, a senior product manager for community health at Twitch, said the company is considering IP bans or other safety measures for future updates said in a video.

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Rough news for the World Scrabble Championship, which was down to a peak of just 900 Twitch viewers this year.

Wait, sorry, my mistake: 900 is a “Scrabble-record audience,” according to Slate.

I love Scrabble, but there’s a dude asleep in bed right now who has over 1,000 concurrents.

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The most abysmal policy debate I’ve ever seen ended with a multi-millionaire doing the worm.

Copyright law can’t seem to keep up with how fast YouTube and streaming trends evolve, so creators have long taken it upon themselves to set up industry norms for “react”-style videos.

Recently, Twitch and Kick star xQc caught a lot of heat for breaking those norms after posting what essentially amounted to reuploads of content by smaller creators.

He challenged YouTuber Ethan Klein to a debate over the merits of fair use, but the conversation devolved into... xQc doing the worm? I think there’s a real discussion to be had about copyright and content creation, but this definitely wasn’t it.

Kai Cenat’s AMP group posts first public statement since Friday’s “riot” in Union Square.

Popular Twitch streamer and influencer Kai Cenat is facing charges of inciting a riot at his giveaway event in New York City on Friday and hasn’t posted on social media since being released from custody on Saturday morning.

Now (via Variety), the first statement on the incident has appeared on the Instagram story for his AMP (Any Means Possible) group.

AMP statement: Yesterday members of AMP hoped to create a positing experience for fans and give back as a show of appreciation for their support....We are deeply disheartened by the outbreak of disorderly conduct that affected innocent people and businesses and do not condone that behavior. We apologize to all of those impacted, and we are fully cooperating with local authorities.
AMP Group - “We apologize to all of those impacted, and we are fully cooperating with local authorities.”
Image: AMP Group (Instagram)
Two more gambling sites, Blaze and Gamdom, are now prohibited on Twitch.

Since banning unlicensed gambling content last year, Twitch says gambling viewership on the site has dropped by around 75 percent.

Twitch posted more context in a thread on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter.

Update August 2nd, 2:53PM ET: Added a Twitch post from X.

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Twitch is launching a new series of blog posts about its safety efforts.

The first post is focused on Twitch’s efforts to keep its younger users safe.

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of ...Twitch??

Twitch streamer Nutty has built the most incredible Twitch widget which will allow his viewers to play the Ocarina of Time. Viewers input ocarina commands in chat and a little Link avatar plays the notes. If chat can work together to input the commands for a known song (like the Song of Storms) Link will play the song in full just like he would in Ocarina of Time.

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Twitch is finally making it easier to find new streamers to follow.

Twitch revealed a lot of new features today at TwitchCon, coming over the next few months.

Updates include a new discovery feed that will surface streamers you aren’t following; the ability to export clips to TikTok; a new shared streams update letting streamers go live on their individual channels during a Guest Star session; and a new "stories" format.

Despite protests in France, Twitch is still planning on hosting TwitchCon Paris next weekend.

“The venue is not near the epicenter of the protests, or any of the areas that have seen protest activity, and has continued to operate business as usual,” Twitch said on Twitter. The event is scheduled for July 8th and 9th.

The protests began earlier this week after a 17-year-old was shot by police.

A screenshot of a tweet about TwitchCon Paris shared by the Twitch account.
Here’s the link to the tweet.
Screenshot by Jay Peters / The Verge
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Twitch star Félix “xQc” Lengyel has signed a $100 million deal with rival platform Kick.

Lengyel’s two-year deal with Kick is for about $70 million, with incentives making up the rest.

The deal isn’t exclusive — Lengyel says he will still be streaming on Twitch, though “not nearly as often” as before he signed this deal.

Meanwhile, Twitch walked back unpopular changes this month and introduced a new 70/30 split revenue sharing program as other platforms have begun to more aggressively court streamers.

The Verge
I visit Twitch nearly every day, and somehow I didn’t know about Turbo until I had to write about it today.

And it wasn’t the best introduction — the subscription, which removes most ads, is getting more expensive! But you might be hearing more about Turbo soon, as the company promises that new features are on the way.

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Twitch is launching its own alerts tool for streamers.

Many streamers already use third-party products to show alerts for things like new subscriptions or followers, but now Twitch is introducing its own alerts system. Streamers can access it from the creator dashboard.

Hopefully, the alerts aren’t too annoying — though one example in Twitch’s blog post on the news is a bit much.

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The Washington Post has a big feature about Twitch’s recent struggles.

Take the time to read about Nathan Grayson’s big report about troubles at the Amazon-owned streaming platform, which just changed CEOs and is set to lay off “just over” 400 people. (I’d recommend reading Grayson’s Twitter thread about the story, too.)

How Twitch lost its way

[Washington Post]

The Verge
Amazon’s layoffs included ‘just over 400’ job cuts at Twitch.

Twitch CEO Dan Clancy, who just stepped into the role on Thursday, shared the number as part of a new blog post shortly after the announcement of Amazon’s next huge wave of layoffs.

“Like many companies, our business has been impacted by the current macroeconomic environment, and user and revenue growth has not kept pace with our expectations,” according to Clancy. “In order to run our business sustainably, we’ve made the very difficult decision to shrink the size of our workforce.”

You can read more about Amazon’s layoffs in our post from earlier today.