Hate Raids are what they sound like. Actually, they're probably worse. And so, Twitch streamers are striking. You might already have seen the hashtag #ADayOffTwitch. Here are the details.
It's easy for us to sit back and laugh at streamers, they often force us to cringe and they seem to be happy to do anything for attention. But that's the nature of the industry they're in; if they didn't do gimmicky stunts they simply wouldn't get as many subs, and subs are their livelihood.
Teasing streamers has, for this reason, always been quite popular among trolls. As targets, they're also attractive because they give instant visceral feedback to the abuse. But the trolling has taken a more organized form recently - and streamers say it's too much for them to handle.
September 14 - Update: We updated this article when Twitch began pursuing legal action against two hate raid gang leaders who had been identified. You can find the full details beneath.
What Are Hate Raids?
In a hate raid, a streamer's channel will be 'raided' while they're live and the new visitors will spam the chat with offensive language. If a streamer is gay they will use homophobic language, if they're African American they will use racist language, and so on.
These raids have seen a dramatic increase in recent weeks. It seems many a troll Discord group has been set up for this exact purpose. And yet, Twitch is yet to produce tools to combat these raids, which has led other users to also share the hashtag #TwitchDoBetter.
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#ADayOffTwitch is the hashtag being shared to spread the news of a platform walk-out. Streamers are banding together and agreeing to take the 1st September 2021 off.
The aim is to motivate Twitch to do more for the community. They've probably already got their hands full today with news that TimTheTatman has left the platform. But let's keep our fingers crossed that Twitch does try and act here. YouTube are stealing talent left right and center and it's not a good look to ignore this kind of abuse.
Update: Twitch Begin Hunting Down Hate Raid Leaders
A few weeks after this article was originally published, Twitch filed lawsuits against Cruzzcontrol, based out of the Netherlands, and CreatineOverdose, from Austria - two leaders of separate hate raid gangs. The pair had deliberately targeted BIPOC and LGBTQ channels, spamming the chat with exactly what you can imagine. The suit, unfortunately, claims that both users are still on Twitch and using thousands of bots to continue their campaign of hate.
It's unclear at this stage how successful Twitch can hope to be at apprehending these two, but we'll keep you updated as this story develops.
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