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Twitch makes change to banning, then changes its mind

Accidental update was to curb followbot abuse.

Twitch has rolled back a ban feature it said was accidentally released early.

A change to the way bans work on the platform meant that banned accounts were automatically removed as a follower.

However, Twitch has rolled back on this change a day later.

"While working to curb followbot abuse, a product feature was inadvertently released early," Twitch tweeted. "As a result, accounts that were banned in a channel were automatically removed as a follower. We've rolled back this change and bans should now be functioning as expected."

At the very least this offers some insight into Twitch's thoughts on how to deal with followbot abuse. Marginalised streamers have been suffering from hate raids and demanded Twitch make changes so streamers can better protect themselves.

This update to banning is a sound one. In theory, if a streamer bans an account from their channel for abusive comments, it makes sense that they would automatically be unfollowed.

However, some streamers complained about the change. In part that's because of the potential for accidental bans by either streamers or their moderators. But more common is that temporary banning of regular viewers for fun by moderators is a frequent joke on the platform - even though a temporary timeout would have a similar effect should any permanent changes be made to banning in future.

"We've heard your feedback about this change and the final product should address many concerns raised," said Twitch. "We're continuing to build, and we'll let you know what is happening when we're ready to launch."

It's unknown when any definitive changes will be made to the banning process in the future. It's at least a positive that Twitch are looking into methods of protection, even if this was accidentally released too early.

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About the Author
Ed Nightingale avatar

Ed Nightingale

Deputy News Editor

Ed has an interest in streaming, people and communities, and giving a voice to marginalised people.