There’s a lot to unpack in the latest blog update. Read on to find out what’s allowed and what’s not.
Twitch has long been accused of confusing policies especially when it comes to sexual content on the platform. To address this issue, the Amazon-owned company has now a streamlined policy that should clear most of the confusion but also points to a more lenient approach to sexual content moderation on the platform.
Changes to Twitch’s Sexual Content policy
Consolidating the various sexual content policies under one policy, Twitch will also enhance its reliance on the Content Classification Labels (CCL). These labels were first introduced in July earlier this year and was a way of informing users that the content on the platform might not be suitable for all audiences.
Changes to Twitch Content Recommendations
There will also be changes to the Content recommendations after the latest update. Streams labeled Drugs, Intoxication, or Excessive Tobacco Use; Violent and Graphic Depictions; Gambling; and/or Sexual Themes will no longer show up on the Home Page recommendations.
Streams featured on the Home Page usually have thumbnails that provide a near-accurate description of the type of content. For the abovementioned categories, these thumbnails might end up displaying to users who have not granted explicit permission for the same. However, all streams will be recommended in the left bar as Twitch does not show any previews in that section.
Users will have to manually go to the categories or search for the above categories to land on these streams. Streams with Mature-rated Games and Profanity labels will be featured on the Home Page (unless they also carry one of the prohibited labels mentioned above).
What type of content is now allowed on Twitch
Some of the previously prohibited content, mostly under the Sexual Content Policy is now allowed on Twitch. The purpose of streamlining the policy is to ensure an equal enforcement for all channels irrespective of their size and popularity.
Previously prohibited but now Allowed With Label
- Content that ‘deliberately highlighted breasts, buttocks or pelvic region,’ even when fully clothed. Streamers found it difficult to determine what was prohibited and what was allowed and often evaluating whether or not a stream violated this portion of the policy was subjective. In addition, the former Sexually Suggestive Content policy was out of line with industry standards and resulted in female-presenting streamers being disproportionately penalized.
- Fictionalized (drawn, animated, or sculpted) fully exposed female-presenting breasts and/or genitals or buttocks regardless of gender. There is a thriving artist community on Twitch, and this policy was overly punitive and did not reflect the impact of the content.
- Body writing on female-presenting breasts and/or buttocks regardless of gender. The Twitch Attire Policy already allows body art on breasts and buttocks, so this change makes these policies consistent.
- Erotic dances that involve disrobing or disrobing gestures, such as strip teases.
Changes to Popular Dances
- Popular dances, such as twerking, grinding, and pole dancing are now allowed without a label. Previously some dances were prohibited and others were allowed with a label. Enforcing on dances regardless of context meant our policy prohibited twerking at a wedding or taking a pole dancing exercise class, for example. The policy now takes context into consideration, and only prohibits streaming inside of an adult entertainment establishment.
Streamers can also stream content with fictionalized sexual body parts as long as they have a Sexual Themes label. However, fictionalized sexual acts or masturbation remain prohibited. Similarly, streaming Body Painting is now allowed with some restrictions.
Interestingly, failure to use a CCL classification will not result in a suspension. Repeat offenders will have a CCL label locked onto their stream temporarily following official warnings and correct application of the CCL.
You can read more about the recent changes in the last section of the official Twitch update page.