Gaming influencers using Twitch to market certain games and services will now be without one form of content monetisation. Twitch has recently banned some affiliate links from their platforms, which will significantly impact millions of content creators and subscribers. Uncover more details about the affiliate link ban here.

Recap - What is Twitch?

Twitch is a streaming platform similar to YouTube, where content creators can monetise their production based on subscriptions, advertisements, affiliate links and more. However, unlike YouTube, where the mix of content is diverse, Twitch mainly offers gaming content. This includes live streams of exceptional gamers as well as gamers offering reviews, hints and tips. The content covers a wide variety of gaming niches. The platform is estimated to have over 140 million active users.

What is the Twitch affiliate ban?

In August 2021, Twitch made a decision that none of us saw coming. The streaming platform often monetised by gamers and content creators decided to ban affiliate links to play dice games, slot games and roulette in the UK. In a nutshell, content creators are no longer permitted to provide referral codes and bonus promotions to external online gambling activities.

It is believed the ban is due to a significant proportion of users promoting slot gaming and a worry that it could lead to unhealthy gambling habits among a small percentage of its users. Twitch Tracker indicates that in May 2021, a record number of people streamed a slots-related video equating to over 35 million hours of content.

It should be noted that the Twitch Affiliate ban only applies to gambling referrals and discount codes. It does not prevent any content creators from continuing to produce content and streams surrounding online gambling activities.

This is arguable because the company doesn't want to lose such a significant proportion of creators and views but simultaneously doesn't want to be seen inactive on the issue. It's why one gaming group CEO suggests the move pushes the matter to the side without really solving the problem.

Will the ban apply in Canada?

Canada's Twitch cohorts are significant producers and viewers of online gambling-related content. The same ban will apply, meaning no gambling affiliate links will be allowed, reducing the number of creators who seek to include links in their content.

As a result, gambling businesses may choose to use other platforms or invest in different methods to promote services and games, such as blogs or social media. Casinos and influencers are unlikely to steer away from Twitch completely, especially when so many online gamblers are using the platform. Still, it could make them consider other forms of affiliate gambling marketing.


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