Twitch has been handing out bans like candy during Halloween in the past week, offering neither rhyme nor reason as to why the gavel is swinging. Guy Beahm was recently banned in an incident that no one appears to be willing to talk about, and now Fernando ‘Fer’ Alvarenga has recently experienced the unpleasant feeling of being unceremoniously removed from the platform.
The MIBR star has been with the team since they were relevant in 2015, and has recently been fined for racist comments made on stream against blacks. He’s since been riling up his fans along with the rest of the MIBR roster, calling teams ‘shit’ and claiming that players are cheating and using various hacks after they take a loss.
It hasn’t been a tremendously successful couple of years for the MIBR team, as they seem to curtail more controversies than achievements as of late. Some users of Twitch allege that ‘Fer’ has been banned due to his recent rants against ‘Mongoloids’ or that this could be an extenuation of the racist comments Fer made early this month, which Twitch did not publically crackdown on.
— StreamerBans (@StreamerBans) June 30, 2020
It’s worth noting, however, that these shadow-bans that Twitch has been doling out isn’t tremendously helpful to any cause or users. Without Twitch specifying what occurred, and why punishment has been enacted, it isn’t helpful for fellow streamers to ensure that they’re well within the standard ‘rules of engagement’ on Twitch beyond the boilerplate clauses that all streamers must adhere to.
In the case of Guy Beahm (Dr. Disrespect), poring over videos has been fruitless; there hasn’t been any exponential jump in character or demeanor that one could point to with certainty as to why he was banned. If streamers are now going to begin getting banned for their personal lives, instead of what they stream, that brings a bit of what one may consider excessive force to the streaming juggernaut.
If a user is to vote for a politician that Twitch disproves of, is their career at risk? If they disagree with the cultural reforms occurring within their nation, is that putting their income in jeopardy?
It can become a slippery slope if Twitch is looking at banning streamers for their personal lives, yet other streamers have abused animals live on Twitch and never faced repercussions. Which brings into question whether the rules and following enforcements are universal, or if Twitch is only going after streamers that they have a vendetta against.
Fernando Alvarenga may be viewed as one of the most toxic professional Counter-Strike players on the most toxic team, yet you simply can’t ban toxic people without solid cause lest you lose all form of authenticity and goodwill that brings people to your service in the first place.
All of which is plausible to ponder, as Twitch isn’t offering any statements as to why users are being banned, and the banned channels aren’t necessarily stepping outside of their standard confinement.
If Twitch is attempting to make a statement with its current bans that seemed to have redoubled in the past week, it’s falling on deaf ears. Because no one knows what the hell Twitch is trying to say other than ‘we can remove your source of income and voice on our platform’. It’s well within their rights, of course; it just isn’t inspiring any change.