A group of Twitch streamers who are fed up with hate raids against marginalized creators is striking from Twitch for a day.
Rek It Raven (@RekItRaven), a content creator and Twitch streamer, originally helped lead the charge against hate raids with the #TwitchDoBetter trend on Twitter earlier this month. Now, they're back, and—with help from fellow creators Lucia Everblack (@LuciaEverblack) and ShinyPen (@ShineyPen)—have organized a one-day broadcast boycott from the platform.
Twitch Streamers Organize One-Day Broadcast Ban
Raven, Everblack, and ShineyPen have taken it upon themselves to spark change and inspire solidarity with a one-day boycott from Twitch on Wednesday, Sept. 1. For 24 hours, the trio encourages anyone interest in participating to simply take a break from the platform.
Despite Twitch coming forward at the start of August in response to the trend and, again, on Friday, Aug. 20 to follow-up with reassurances of change, several marginalized creators are still finding themselves on the receiving end of hate raids. It appears the cascade of intolerance has become too much to simply sit back and take while Twitch works on its moderation system.
"No one should have to experience malicious and hateful attacks based on who they are or what they stand for," the company said on Friday, "We want every creator to feel safe doing what they love, and our team is constantly working to develop lasting, impactful solutions that make Twitch safe for everyone."
Unfortunately, photographer and Twitch affiliate, Art of the Apocalypse, showcased just how meager these tools actually are. As an experiment, he decided to try and ban the word "jogger" from his channel in all recognizable forms using a handwritten program. That program generated 21.9 million variations of the word using Latin characters, alone. Worse, he explains, is that Twitch doesn't allow creators to ban the words "en masse." Even with a channel bot handling moderation, the process is near impossible.
"In order to block 21.9 million words, my channel bot will need to run 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for 76 days—to block one word." He explained.
Not all streamers are on board with the boycott—for a variety of reasons. Popular creator Asmongold was quoted by Dexerto's Alex Tsiaoussidis saying that "nobody gives a f***" about the boycott due to its small audience.
"You can’t get a bunch of 20 [small streamers] together and think you’re going to do anything. Nobody gives a f**k." He said, though admitted he would join in on the condition other larger streamers did it first.
When Tsiaoussidis asked why Asmongold doesn't step up and be the first to lead the pack, the streamer replied that his audience "got annoyed about it" in the past. Unsurprisingly, this didn't sit well with other creators.
However, as Everblack pointed out, this has gone far beyond a few "small streamers". She wrote, "The amount of media attention about is proof that September 1st isn't about creators remaining silent but instead choosing to be loud in other ways."
Raven and their team have been taking the disagreement in stride. They encourage their audiences to be polite with dissenters and those with differing opinions on how to go about the protest—and, of course, take a healthy amount of time to dunk on the most outrageous haters. Additionally, some of those who can afford to take off streaming have committed to protecting those who can't.
The boycott has generated massive buzz in the form of a Twitter trend and has dozens of participants declaring their support on social media at the time of writing.