I’ve been streaming on Twitch since this summer. I have always been uneasy. But, at first, that was definitely eclipsed by my excitement to meet new people — a whole new group of people. What’s unfortunate is I didn’t really do my homework. I knew the Twitch community had problems with racism, misogyny, and classism but I was literally working under the assumption that, because it seemed trolls and haters were still upset at Twitch, that Twitch was on the side of those people the trolls harass. I really thought this: trolls blame Twitch for “titty streamers” —> Twitch supports those women —> Twitch works against trolls and for women. I had no idea that Twitch had actually caved to the demands of the trolls to censor us. I had no idea that Twitch, a supposedly 21st century company, would implement the kind of arbitrarily enforced and interpreted dress code I endured at catholic school.
There is no way I can continue streaming for the Twitch network if they continue to demean people by imposing arbitrary rules, almost exclusively to women and LGBTQ people, without any warning or communication. It’s one thing to have crazy rules, its another thing not to give warnings in order to teach compliance. I invest time and money in streaming! Their policy is draconian and meant to appease insecure incels who want us to experience their cruelty. It’s the same strategy a lot of shitty cops use: its easier to remove the victim from the perpetrator than it is the perpetrator from the victim. It’s a difficult practice for people to notice because most people aren’t the type of dickheads that would even think of doing this, because they value justice and protect innocence and assume others do to. In fact, a lot of people would sooner believe that the innocent person is guilty rather than the “honest” cop hauling him in.
When Twitch banned me I got an email that said I had on “sexually inappropriate attire” and that I had gotten a “strike.” I live in California; wearing a bikini top with blue jeans is a fine outfit. But somebody decided to shame me for my body and maintain a precedent of women being up to no good. The ban was for 24 hours and when it was lifted all of my videos were hidden away as “private”, unavailable to my viewers and subscribers. I worked hard and invested actually money in streaming. I’m an affiliate with 14 subscribers. I just couldn’t believe this all happened. I also couldn’t get out of my mind the fact that if I can get one arbitrary, bigoted “strike” I could easily, unknowingly, be given another. This scares me.
Streamers shouldn’t be scared of both the platform and the users. And kids shouldn’t be taught that women’s bodies are for others to control and judge. I’m switching to YouTube. I’ll be on both networks, simultaneously, for about a month and then turning off Twitch.