Video Game Gambling Streams Still Active on Twitch Despite Ban

Posted on: December 15, 2023, 07:01h. 

Last updated on: December 17, 2023, 05:12h.

Amazon-owned content streaming platform Twitch continues to allow CS:GO gambling content despite company’s active ban. Players often use “skin” to bet on content on the platform.

A man pressing the Twitch icon on his cell phone
A man pressing the Twitch icon on his cell phone. Video game skin gambling continues on the platform despite a recent ban by Twitch. (Image: Getty Images)

Video game skin gambling uses virtual in-game items, often called “skins,” as currency to bet on the outcome of professional or amateur eSports matches or other virtual events. Gambling typically involves streamers conducting live streams of matches or events while viewers can place bets using their own in-game skins. The streamer acts as a mediator or host, handling the distribution of winnings and managing the overall betting process.

Users can still find access to sites promoting video game gambling on Twitch. This is something the platform expressly began to prohibit in August.

Dexerto, a news outlet that follows the global gaming industry, reported on Thursday that it has yet to identify a single channel penalized for promoting these sites. It analyzed familiar gambling content channels and found no difference between August and now.

The media outlet reported that individual streamers and tournament organizers continue to promote case-opening platforms and stream their gambling activities. They even still use Twitch extensions like Magic Wheel to win prizes. A user on Reddit, “atalanthus,” also recently verified the connection.

CS:GO Concerns 

In response to growing concerns regarding promoting CS:GO (Counter-Strike: Global Offensive) gambling sites on its platform, Twitch banned promoting CS:GO case opening sites and gambling this past August. Designed to help prevent underage gambling, this move was met with positive feedback from the gaming community, and it was assumed the streamers who profited off the case openings would take a financial hit.

Before the ban, YouTuber “HOUNGOUNGAGNE,” a self-described CS:GO “addict” with 727K subscribers, discovered that approximately 75% of the top 300 CS:GO streamers on Twitch incorporated gambling sponsorships into their broadcasts. Surprisingly, according to Dexerto’s investigation, this figure appears to have remained consistent despite the explicit ban, raising questions about Twitch’s enforcement of its guidelines.

Twitch, which recently pulled out of South Korea for financial reasons, specifically said in August, “[CS:GO gambling] promotion/sponsorship is not allowed on our service.”

Sexual Content Policies

Twitch recently revamped its policies on sexual content for streamers, aiming for clarity and transparency. The updated guidelines, detailed in a blog post, ensure content creators understand the rules and that viewers can expect the intended experience.

One significant change allows “artistic nudity,” encompassing nude figure drawings of any gender. The policy allows for content that shows the “breasts, buttocks or pelvic region.” The creator must include the ‘Sexual Themes’ label to prevent unwanted access, according to Twitch.

Twitch has confirmed that it will also allow other types of content, including “fictionalized (drawn, animated, or sculpted) fully exposed female-presenting breasts and/or genitals or buttocks regardless of gender,” “body writing on female-presenting breasts and/or buttocks regardless of gender,” and “erotic dances that involve disrobing or disrobing gestures, such as strip teases.”

Despite this, there appears to be some ambiguity in Twitch’s definition of “artistic content,” as demonstrated by recent incidents. Steamer and OnlyFans model Morgpie recently received a ban for a viral video of her dancing, although she didn’t actually show her “private parts.” Her ban is still in place.