Posted on: November 4, 2022, 12:12h.
Last updated on: November 4, 2022, 02:55h.
Twitch made changes to its policies last month that removed certain gambling content from the menu. Only a few short weeks later, an analysis of traffic flows on the streaming platform shows that the policy change has definitely left its mark.
Although the decision to remove some gambling content received a lot of backlash, campaigners praised it. At the same time, however, they hoped Twitch would ban all forms of gambling content.
That isn’t likely to happen, especially considering that gambling was one of Twitch’s primary sources of revenue. Still, the loss, according to data company Casinolytics, is hitting the company’s popularity.
Twitch Twitches at Loss of Content
Twitch’s updated “Prohibited Gaming Content” section was an effort to appease certain streamers, who have fought for years to reduce gambling on the platform. It effectively suspended four domains from being promoted to Twitch, including stake.com, robot.com, rollbit.com, and duelbits.com.
After the policy update, users cannot share links or affiliate codes with websites offering dice, roulette, and slot games. Because of differences in time zones, some users could stream gambling content for several hours even after the new rules went into effect.
Casinolytics, a data science company that covers the iGaming industry, recently produced a report highlighting the effects of Twitch’s recent gambling policy update. To reach its conclusions, it used its own data and expertise in compiling the results.
In the third quarter of the year, Twitch remained the king of streaming content. It was responsible for 95.9% of the entire audience in the period, while YouTube held 4.1%. YouTube still commands the lead in terms of reviews, replays, and big-win videos, but Twitch remains the undisputed champion of casino live streaming.
It now represents 74% of the market, according to the Casinolytics report. Prior to the policy change, it controlled around 96% of the market. Twitch is still at the top, but the 22% drop in only a matter of weeks is significant.
As a result, Twitch could be looking to offset the difference through new ad revenue channels. The company recently confirmed that it’s testing new ad streaming services, with an ad channel possibly running concurrently alongside the streamer’s content.
When it began the transition, Twitch said it will more closely scrutinize whether streamers are using a virtual private network (VPN) in order to circumvent geolocation-blocking tools. In addition, it is now more consistently monitoring whether gambling streamers who promote to US audiences have an operating license from a major gaming authority.
The changes were good news for YouTube; its popularity increased following the Twitch policy update. The Casinolytics report shows that the platform has seen an on-average 40% increase in its reach since the Twitch transformation.
Some users began to stream simultaneously through Twitch, YouTube, and Dlive. Not surprisingly, the four gaming entities Twitch specifically targeted quickly jumped to Dlive, the alternative platform that the Southern Poverty Law Center describes as being popular with “white supremacists and other extremists.”