Sun. Oct 2nd, 2022
Ninja's defunct Twitch page, as it briefly looked this weekend (the explicit thumbnail in the top left corner has been blurred by Ars Technica).
enlarge Ninja’s defunct Twitch page, as it briefly looked this weekend (the explicit thumbnail in the top left corner has been blurred by Ars Technica).

Popular video game streamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins is no longer on Amazon’s popular Twitch service after Microsoft paid to move him to its rival Mixer earlier this month. But Ninja’s Twitch page lives on without him, existing in zombie form who accidentally promoted a pornographic channel over the weekend.

Most of the defunct, offline streamer pages on Twitch revert to some sort of permanent archive form, where streamers can direct their followers to new locations and viewers can access old streams and clips. After Ninja Twitch left, Twitch used that premium online real estate (which at its peak had over 14 million followers) to direct users to other popular Fortnite streaming on Twitch. “The Ninja you’re looking for is in another castle” read a header on the page. “Watch these popular live channels.”

This anomaly wasn’t causing too much trouble for anyone until this weekend, when a stream of hardcore pornography somehow climbed to the top of that one. Fortnite recommendations. Visitors to Ninja’s old Twitch page this weekend were confronted with an explicit thumbnail of the stream along with a Cyrillic description of the content. After the explicit content promotion was noticed, Twitch quickly reverted the Ninja page to the default archive mode, as normal.

“Our community comes to Twitch looking for live content. To make sure they find great, live channels, we experimented with showing featured content on Twitch, including on offline streamer pages,” Twitch CEO Emmett Shear tweeted late on sunday

“However, the lewd content that appeared on the offline channel page violates our terms of service and we have permanently suspended the affected account,” Shear continued. “We have also suspended these recommendations while investigating how this content was promoted. On a more personal note, I apologize, I would like to apologize directly [sic] to Ninja that this has happened. We didn’t mean to, but it shouldn’t have happened. No excuses.”

Ninja also used his own tweeted message to apologize for a situation that doesn’t seem to be his fault. He also expressed a barely controlled anger at Twitch itself.

“We didn’t say anything bad or negative about Twitch, because there really was no reason to,” Ninja said. †[But] I’ve been streaming for eight years to build my brand and build that channel: 14.5 million followers. And they were still using my channel to promote other streamers.”

“I have nothing to say about these things,” he continued. “So this is the rule, this is the last straw, we’re trying to start by removing the entire channel, or at least not promoting any other streamers, other channels on my brand, on my freaking profile. So for everyone I have Given that, to anyone whose child clearly didn’t want to see that, my apologies and I’m sorry.”

“This wouldn’t even have been an issue if they hadn’t used my channel to promote others in the first place…” added Ninja in a follow-up tweet

Twitch has had issues with this kind of explicit stream trolling before, especially when the landing page for Valve’s Artifact was inundated with violent, pornographic, racist, misogynistic and copyright-infringing videos. Twitch took the extreme step of cutting off streaming for newly created accounts in the wake of that attack, later filing a lawsuit against 100 unnamed suspects the company says were responsible. A year ago, the Google Play Store faced a similar problem (with less harmful impact) when Epic decided to move Fortnite outside of Google’s storefront and prefer direct downloads on Android instead. In response, Google posted a custom message on top Fortnite searches in the Play Store tell users that “Fortnite Battle Royale by Epic Games, Inc is not available on Google Play” and directs users to similar games.

By akfire1

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