Recently Twitch.tv made an update to their Code of Conduct:
Nerds are sexy, and you’re all magnificent, beautiful creatures, but let’s try and keep this about the games, shall we?
Wearing no clothing or sexually suggestive clothing – including lingerie, swimsuits, pasties, and undergarments – will most likely get you reported by the community, as well as any full nude torsos*, which applies to both male and female broadcasters. You may have a great six-pack, but that’s better shared on the beach during a 2-on-2 volleyball game blasting “Playing with the Boys.”
* If it’s unbearably hot where you are, and you happen to have your shirt off (gents) or a bikini top (ladies), then just crop the webcam to your face. If your lighting is hot, get fluorescent bulbs to reduce the heat. Xbox One Kinect doesn’t zoom? Move it closer to you, or turn it off. There is always a workaround.
We sell t-shirts, and those are always acceptable. #Kappa
When the news dropped, multiple streamers, mostly female, raised quite the stink. The main reason being that they felt by diminishing their ability to show skin, it would lose them followers and subscribers who pay an amount of money monthly to watch their streams without ads. Anyone who has used twitch.tv can confirm that in order to become a paid streamer, you either need to be extremely skilled, extremely friendly and cute or simply reveal a lot of skin if you are a female and are in shape.
An example of this is “…a Sexy Lil Actress, Model, Cosplayer, & Gamer. Silly, Snarky, Professional Eccentric, PartTime Flake, Feisty Lil firecracker” named Liz Katz.
Before I begin, please don’t get me wrong, I am a huge fan of Liz Katz. I’ve followed her work for some time now and have to admit that I am more of a fan of how kind she is as opposed to her sexually charged cosplay. However, I am not here to talk about her cosplay nor her personality but her streaming sessions.
When playing video games on Twitch.tv, she tends to dress in her previous cosplays. Because all of them are in fact revealing and meant to be sultry, it is a prime example of what is prohibited. I will mention that Liz Katz was not banned, to my knowledge, during this time. The only offense that had been made was a few suggestive photos that Twitch requested to be taken down, in which Liz Katz complied. She stated in her blog:
In my opinion Twitch did a wonderful job laying out their wardrobe rules and it should really help prevent any questions about what we can or can not stream in. For cosplay gaming play streams I know: Slave Leia = bad Catwoman = good. If I want to be a little more racy, I can post it on my own website.
Since the update, Twitch.tv has weeded out many streamers who would still not comply after several warnings and quite a few have threatened to take their streaming elsewhere such as hitbox.tv, a competitor of Twitch.tv. There are however, a few lady gamers who are still hated upon by the community. So much so that they have even begun a petition which targets KneeColeslaw, catcam69, Poopbutt101, and kaceytron.
Personally, I agree with Liz Katz. Twitch.tv was once a place players could go to see gameplay from games they were on the fence about, watch much more skilled individuals than themselves play their favorite games or even watch older games they love be played for the first time by streamers. It’s unfortunate that the old saying ‘Sex Sells’ applies in this regard as well. The running joke of ‘How to be famous on twitch: skinny waist, cute face, large breasts and then watch the subscribers roll in’ began and although not all female gamers could quit their job and stream full time, they still collected quite a bit of money.
I do hope that the community of twitch does revert back to paying more attention to the video games at hand rather than how sexually appealing the streamer is.
Here is to hoping!