Through Twitch's new animated emotes, one streamer has pranked others with a "bits" emote that looks like they've been given enormous donations from new viewers. It's safe to say that not everyone has seen the funny side.
In the last couple of months, the streaming service has undergone a large number of changes in reaction to the new metas that arrive like tsunamis crashing onto a teeny tiny sandcastle. Firstly, the hot tub meta divided audiences into those who thought that sitting in a pool in a swimsuit was sexualised and those who congratulated the streamers on cultivating a new brand in an evolving online space. This was no simmering conflict either, as VIPs like xQc called the hot tub meta "the most pathetic thing we've seen on Twitch in forever." Yikes.
After hot tub streamers received their own dedicated category, superstars like Amouranth and Indiefoxx shifted to the ASMR category, dressed in cosplay or yoga leggings and licking their microphones for subscriber goals. Twitch swiftly took action against this and banned the two content creators which was welcomed by the community. "We need consistency and equal treatment. What's the point of the TOS then?" said Alinity, regarding the fact that Indiefoxx had been banned six times in as many months this year.
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Here's the thing: no matter what the rules are, you'll always find people straying from the straight and narrow to see how far they'll be able to push it. The latest infraction is to use animated emotes- that are only available to partnered streamers - to prank people into thinking they've just gotten a massive donation. Redvines is one such streamer who created the $100 bits notification into an emote and allowed access to the emote to his subscribers.
His first target was FaZe Mew, who was casually chatting with his audience when the $500 "donation" arrived. FaZe Mew was extremely excited and couldn't believe his eyes but then the realisation set in. "'Get pranked?' What do you mean?" he said, clearly confused that the cash wasn't real, but he soon laughed it off. Redvines has encouraged his subscribers to prank other streamers, and Emmagination's experience has led to Twitch taking the emote out of circulation permanently.
Today Twitch hit a new low for me. I was just telling my community how I am in risk of ending up homeless after my divorce because of my government's inability to support disabled people and then this happened in my chat (those are animated emotes, by the way, NOT bits) pic.twitter.com/NvevZ3rBvu
- Emma :flag_white:️⚧️:flag_white:️:rainbow: (@theEmmagination) July 10, 2021
"Today Twitch hit a new low for me. I was telling my community how I am in risk of [sic] ending up homeless after my divorce because of my government's inability to support disabled people and this happened in my chat," said the streamer on Twitter, attaching a screenshot of the fake donation. It would have amounted to $5,400, which would have changed her situation significantly. "All of a sudden someone 'donated' several hundreds dollars to me...except they didn't, it was all a prank for content..."
It's a wonder that this emote made it through the Terms of Service on Twitch as it evidently did have the capability to hurt people's experiences on the platform. "My new emote is no longer available, thought it would be a funny prank but some people used it maliciously," said Redvines in a response to the controversy. "Sorry."
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