The streaming platform Twitch has caused a stir in recent months. The reason for this are so-called casino streams, in which streamers play live in front of an audience for a lot of money on virtual slot machines.

A trend that has been heavily criticized by many viewers. Because the streamers, who are often sponsored by gambling providers, earn a lot of money with their live broadcasts, while they introduce their mostly young viewers to the world and the associated dangers of gambling. After popular streamers threatened to boycott the platform, Twitch responded in October and partially restricted gambling streams. However, critics consider the measures implemented to be far too harmless and are calling for stricter regulations.

Gambling streams aren't completely disappearing from Twitch

According to Twitch, streaming roulette, dice and slot games has been prohibited since October 18, 2022 if the respective gaming provider does not have a US license or a license from other countries with sufficient consumer protection.

In a September tweet, the streaming service explicitly named casino sites Stake.com, Rollbit.com, Duelbits.com and Roobet.com as being banned when the new guidelines came into effect. In the past few years, some of these providers had earned hundreds of millions of US dollars through advertising from international and German casino streamers - and that without a valid gaming license.

While casino streams have been restricted under the new rules, streaming of sports betting, poker games and fantasy sports loungers will remain permitted under the new policy change.

Gambling opponents criticize the new measures

Critics have drawn attention to the dangers of casino streams for years, warning that the easily accessible streams normalize gambling and make it attractive even to underage viewers. The announcement of stricter rules for the regulation of casino streams therefore initially caused approval among gambling opponents.

With the implementation of the policy changes, however, critical voices that had been silenced for a short time became loud again. Although the new guidelines are a step in the right direction, there are no far-reaching changes due to the restrictions.

This gives streamers the opportunity to switch from gambling providers that are now prohibited to ones that are still allowed and so easily continue their casino streams. In addition, it is not unlikely that soon permitted casino sites will cooperate with the streamers who were previously under contract with the currently banned providers.

Consumer advocates call for an unrestricted ban on gambling on Twitch

It also remains questionable whether Twitch in Germany will also comply with German legislation on online gambling and will block providers with a license from other EU countries. Consumer advocates are therefore calling on the streaming platform to ban all gambling content from the platform without restriction. "Otherwise, Twitch will continue to do its part in the future, so that young people are driven into gambling addiction and financial ruin," comments Angelika Menze, first chairwoman of the Berlin/Brandenburg Consumer Protection Association (VSVBB).

Numerous gambling companies advertise with high bonus payments and other offers for German players via platforms such as Twitch. However, most of them are illegal in this country, because in Germany online gambling can only be offered with a German license. So far there are only 14 companies that have a nationwide license to offer virtual slot games online. Since the contracts between the illegal online casinos and their German players are thus void, players are entitled to a full refund of their lost wagers. Of the VSVBB helps players recover their gambling losses.

And now?

Twitch reacted quickly after high-reach streamers threatened to boycott the platform due to the large amount of gambling content. However, the action does not seem well thought out. Casino streams will not disappear with the new regulations. Both gambling streamers and providers will sooner or later find ways to continue this extremely lucrative business. This could only be stopped if Twitch banned all gambling content without restriction.

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Last updated on 3.02.2023/XNUMX/XNUMX / Affiliate Links / Images from the Amazon Product Advertising API. * = Affiliate links. Images from Amazon PA API