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May 14, 2021
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Twitch outlines plan to take action against off-platform misconduct

Twitch outlines plan to take action against off-platform misconduct

April 8, 2021 | By Alissa McAloon

Twitch closed out 2020 with an overhaul of its Hateful Conduct and Harassment policy and now the streaming giant has now followed up that shift with another change, this time one that aims to address behavior that takes place outside of Twitch itself.

Moving forward, Twitch will take action against certain behaviors deemed a substantial safety risk to the Twitch community even if the behavior occurs entirely off of Twitch.

A blog post from the company shares a list of what kind of behavior it considers to fall into that substantial safety risk category. Behavior like violent extremism, explicit and/or credible threats of mass violence, membership in a known hate group, acts of sexual assault, involvement in sexual exploitation of children, and threats against Twitch or Twitch staff are all covered by the new policy even if that behavior happens outside of Twitch streams or chats.

"While this policy is new, we have taken action historically against serious, clear misconduct that took place off service, but until now, we didn’t have an approach that scaled," explains Twitch.

"These investigations are vastly more complex and can take significant time and resources to resolve. We have access to the relevant data about activity that occurs on the Twitch service, which enables us to investigate reports and enforce our policies. For behaviors that take place off Twitch, we must rely more heavily on law enforcement and other services to share relevant evidence before we can move forward."

Part of the enforcement change Twitch details involves setting up an email address to confidentially report violations of this policy, increasing its internal law enforcement response team, and bringing in an experienced investigations law firm to better investigate and respond to reports of off-service misconduct.

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