Twitch will ban controversial crypto gambling livestreams after backlash against recent multi-million-dollar sponsorship deals enjoyed by top Twitch personalities.
Twitch, which is owned by Amazon.com Inc., will prohibit livestreaming gambling sites like Stake.com, Rollbit and Duelbits.com that “aren’t licensed either in the US or other jurisdictions that provide sufficient consumer protection,” Twitch said in a statement posted on Twitter. Stake.com, the most popular of these sites, is licensed in Curacao. The ban goes into effect October 18.
“While we prohibit sharing links or referral codes to all sites that include slots, roulette or dice games, we’ve seen some people circumvent those rules and expose our community to potential harm,” the statement reads.
Watching streamers gamble is almost as popular as watching gamers play Fortnite on Twitch, according to data from TwitchTracker. At any given time, over 50,000 people are watching Twitch celebrities play slots, Blackjack and other games of chance, primarily gambling with cryptocurrencies like Ether and Bitcoin. Sites like Stake.com sponsor the biggest influencers for upwards of $1 million a month, according to a streamer.
Both Twitch streamers and fans have spoken out against gambling livestreams. This week, several top Twitch personalities threatened to stop live streaming on Twitch should Twitch not act on gambling. Some fans have become hooked on crypto gambling after watching their favorite streamers participate, Bloomberg reported.