Twitch Enhances Blocking Features to Address Online Harassment

Twitch, the popular live video streaming platform, is taking significant steps to combat harassment and abuse within its community, particularly among gamers. Starting in September, Twitch will introduce a new feature allowing users to completely hide their streams from blocked or banned individuals, a move that extends beyond the current ability to block users from chats.

The Amazon-owned platform is also considering implementing bans on specific IP addresses to prevent harassers from creating new accounts. Harassment has been a chronic issue on Twitch since its launch in 2011, with many women sharing experiences of abuse from male members of the community. The platform has also faced problems with “hate raids,” where fans of particular streamers attack others with hateful comments.

A recent study revealed that 50% of British female gamers have faced online abuse, with numbers rising to 75% among those aged 18-24. The consequences have been severe, leading to feelings of depression and even suicidal thoughts in some cases.

Twitch has previously introduced tools to detect account circumvention and has shared ban lists between streamers for transparency. The new “Blocked Playback” feature aims to give streamers and moderators greater control over their channels, reinforcing safety and community building. This initiative reflects Twitch’s commitment to evolve its safety policies and provide a more secure environment for users to share their passions and connect with others.

Source: Twitch to provide new blocking powers to combat online abuse

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