Gaming is one of the greatest inventions of mankind. With the development of Internet technology, there are many opportunities to enjoy a variety of amusements. It is logical that they are available, both for free and for money. In the second case, casino games deserve special attention. Their specificity is that the player pays money to get a chance to win money.
The development of streaming services has allowed it to bring to a new level of promotion of casino games. Content-makers actively advertise the services of the gambling operator, but they do not do it in the classic style. How? — We will tell you about it in our review, dedicated to Twitch and the attitude of the service to casino games.
What is Twitch?
Twitch is a streaming service owned by Twitch Interactive, a subsidiary of Amazon.com. The platform originally specialized in video games, including broadcasts of gameplay and eSports tournaments. Videos on the Twitch platform can be viewed both live and on-demand. In 2019, the service introduced a paid subscription system. If a Twitch user without a subscription goes to such a stream, they will see a small snippet from the stream as a ‘preview’.
What Casino Streamers Do
In the last few years, stream bloggers who veiled or openly advertise online casino services have gained a lot of popularity on Twitch. This has become one of the fastest growing content segments of the service. As it turned out, thousands of people are willing to watch such streams and even pay money for it. It goes like this: the blogger agrees with this or that online casino that will hold a stream, during which he or she will demonstrate how he/she plays slots or other games. During this process, the streamer communicates with subscribers, plays, explains the rules of the game and veiledly advertises the services of their partner (casino).
Gambling streamers earn money from broadcasting their casino game play as follows:
- Receive donations from their customer base that watches the streams;
- Activate a paid subscription feature. The streamer’s most loyal fans are willing to pay money to watch an exclusive broadcast;
- Receive sponsorship rewards from online casinos;
- Can participate in tournaments on slots or other games with a chance to win money.
The potential of gambling streaming was and is so great that many new users are trying to take away their share of the market. But it is very difficult to do this because it requires developing the popularity of the channel. It is not easy to do this in a highly competitive environment.
Read also about Online Casino.
Twitch’s Attitude to Casino Streams
Initially, Twitch had a positive attitude to gambling streams, because it contributed to the growth of the user base of the service. But over time, the situation began to change. In June 2021, some popular gambling services announced that they were suspending or ending casino game streaming. In August of the same year, the service banned referral codes and links belonging to questionable gambling sites.
It is worth noting, the popularity of casino streaming has not decreased, but, on the contrary, increased. By October 2021, the total number of views of online slots game streams reached 18.3 million. By March next year, it exceeded 36 million, and in June, gambling streams entered the top 10 categories of Twitch in terms of popularity.
That said, the service still kept a close eye on violations of its policy against unfair gambling broadcasts. In September 2022, a major scandal erupted. The famous streamer Slicker fraudulently borrowed money from colleagues and viewers, and after spending it in gambling. When the man took money, he claimed that he needed financial help because he was in trouble.
Following this, several popular content creators including Pokimane and Mizkif called on Twitch to tighten its policy on gambling during streams. They stated that the platform currently not only does not discourage such behavior, but instead encourages it.
Streamer Bans on Request from Russia
Twitch’s tightening policy on gambling broadcasts has affected other countries as well. In February 2022, the service administration began responding to requests from the Russian Federation authorities and banning streamers who promote casinos to Russian audiences. The initial list included 15 content makers. Each of them actively advertised the services of illegal online casinos on their streamers. Among the blocked streamers were rapper Egor Creed, bloggers Ilya (Maddyson) Davydov, Yuri Khovansky, and others.
Problems Associated with Gambling Streams
Why is Twitch intolerant of streams that promote illegal online casinos? There are several reasons:
- Illegal online casinos do not support the principles of Responsible Gaming. This means that they are only interested in attracting new users. They have no interest in people playing responsibly and understanding the risks associated with uncontrolled gambling;
- Streams can be watched by underage people, who thus receive information on how to become a client of an illegal online casino. Underage people quickly develop a gambling addiction;
- Streamers mislead subscribers, telling them that casino games are easy, and the winnings are quite real. At the same time, casinos frequently provide their partners with a certain budget for broadcasts, and they do not play with their own money;
- Promoting illegally operating gambling sites leads to streamer subscribers registering on these sites and making a deposit. If they get scammed, have their money stolen, or their personal information is sold to third parties, players have nowhere to turn for help. That’s why it’s important to play at legitimate online casinos.
Subscribers of gambling streamers should realize that winning at casino games is not guaranteed. If the content maker doesn’t say so, then they are essentially pushing you into the risk of losing money. Unfortunately, many people tend to blindly believe their favorite bloggers, and frequently this leads to unfortunate consequences.
Twitch Executive’s Statement on Gambling Streams
In June 2023, Twitch CEO Dan Clancy said that his service is not going to completely ban gambling streams. According to him, only illegal sites deserve to be banned. If such sites become regulated, if they are willing to comply with the laws of most countries in the field of gambling, then Clancy is ready to remove bans. Otherwise, such streams will not appear on Twitch. “We don’t want to encourage the community to visit these sites with a VPN,” Clancy said.
In our opinion, Twitch will not block all gambling streams in the foreseeable future. The service’s audience has a very high demand for watching such streams, and it is unlikely that it will want to lose it. Suffice it to say that in June 2022, the total viewing of streams on slots play reached the figure of 36.3 million! Of course, streamers will have to be more careful about following the rules of the site. Violators will be banned, but in their place will always come new content-makers. The gambling entertainment industry never loses its popularity. If there are people ready to play games, there will be people who will show and tell them how to do it.