Will gambling be banned on Twitch? Answered

Sometimes, the gamba gets too big.

Image via Twitch

Gambling has become a major point of contention between Twitch, its streamers, and its larger community. While gambling and virtual casino streams have seen incredible popularity on the platform, many consider the ease of access and ready availability of these streams as potentially harmful to viewers with active gambling addictions or addictive personalities. Following a handful of gambling-related controversies, including two Twitch staff members accepting bribes from a popular gambling streamer, the interactive live streaming service has stepped forward to change its policies relating to games of chance.

Did Twitch ban gambling?

Image via Twitch

As part of Twitch’s pre-existing user policy, streamers are prohibited from sharing links to, or advertising referral codes for, third-party sites that host the gambling of real money. Despite this, streamers actively playing games like slots and roulette had become immensely popular with audiences and incredibly lucrative for streamers, as brands like Stake offered creators large deals to play on their sites. As long as these gambling streamers did not go out of their way to advertise these sites to their audiences or in their chat rooms, they could continue to gamble while obeying Twitch’s rules.

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The changes made to Twitch’s policy intend to account for and prevent the exploitation of this loophole. In a statement released by the platform, Twitch outlined its plan to “prohibit streaming of gambling sites that include slots, roulette, or dice games that aren’t licensed either in the U.S. or in other jurisdictions that provide sufficient consumer protection.” Listed among sites banned by this new rule include Stake, Rollbit, Duelbits, and Roobet — all of which were made famous through brand deals with streamers.

Does this change inherently mean that any gambling is banned on Twitch? Not exactly. Websites and betting services that are notably licensed and regulated can continue to operate on and alongside the site. Listed as examples of this exception include poker games, fantasy sports sites, and formally sanctioned sports betting services.