On Wednesday, Twitch announced an expansion of its Hateful behavior and harassment policies This takes into account the behavior outside the platform. A blog post from the company announced that it is hiring a “Third Party Investigation Partner” to assist Twitch’s internal team with investigations and help enforce infringements outside of the platform.
According to Twitch’s post, the new partner is an “experienced investigative law firm” that will help the company “more thoroughly investigate and respond to reports of off-duty misconduct.” Not only did the post add numbers to the team investigating incident reports, it also stated that there is a dedicated email address that people can use to report “outrageous off-duty misconduct”.
While disciplining users for off-platform behavior isn’t new to Twitch – inappropriate off-platform behavior has led to bans since 2018 – this addition will improve on the existing policies that the company enforced in January 2020 unclear how the company would address violations outside of the platform.
Two categories of external enforcement were discussed in the article:
Category one: Someone’s being harassed on Twitch as well as from Twitch. In this case, we will consider verifiable conduct or statements outside of the Service relating to an incident on Twitch. For example, if we review a harassment report of an incident that happened live on the stream, related or ongoing harassment on Twitter may be considered when reported to us. This is how our current off-service policy works in the vast majority of cases and will not change.
Category two: We will now take action against serious crimes that pose a significant security risk to the Twitch community. even if these actions take place entirely outside of Twitch.
The newly expanded enforcement will focus on some of the “most egregious types of physical and psychological harm” including, but limited to: fatal violence and violent extremism, performing or acting as an accomplice in inconsistent sexual and / or sexual assault and sexual activity Exploitation of children.
Twitch has long struggled with the toxicity attached to its platform, despite trying to positively highlight color creators on the platform. Personalities and community members who participate in homophobic statements, racial slurs and emotes and sexist comments are all areas that Twitch has tried to address with varying results over the years.