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Entertainment • Aug 01, 2019

Can streamers breastfeed on Twitch? Streaming platform updates rules after HeatheredEffect controversy

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Can streamers breastfeed on Twitch? Streaming platform updates rules after HeatheredEffect controversy
Instagram/HeatheredEffect

Twitch has decided it will now allow streamers to breastfeed after a recent controversy in which Heather “HeatheredEffect” Kent had a clip removed without warning.

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As Dexerto previously reported, mother-of-four HeatheredEffect was breastfeeding during a Just Chatting stream in an attempt to normalize breastfeeding. 

When a clip of the streamer went viral and was viewed over 20,000 times, some users thought this was a violation of Twitch’s policies on nudity. The clip then disappeared from Twitch without any warning. 

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An angry Heather posted the deleted clip to Twitter on July 24 and wrote, “This clip (which had over 20k views and would’ve helped tremendously with the  #normalizebreastfeeding movement) was deleted by Twitch with no explanation. We obviously have a long way to go in the fight to normalize breastfeeding."

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After users pointed out to Heather that the clip went against the company’s ToS, she pointed out that content matters in these situations. 

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“ToS takes context into consideration which is why @TominationTime can stream shirtless,” the activist wrote. “Regardless, some rules are meant to be broken to move society forward. I believe this is the right thing to do.”

Now, after backlash, Twitch has finally confirmed that breastfeeding will be allowed going forward. 

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“WE DID IT!” an elated Heather wrote on August 1. “@Twitch just confirmed what we were saying all along—breastfeeding is NOT sexual & it is NOT against ToS.” 

“Moral of the story: Never back down for the things you believe in regardless of the backlash you receive. You can make a difference!” 

Twitter: HeatheredEffect
Twitch ruled in HeatheredEffect's favor regarding its stane on breastfeeding

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HeatheredEffect also included a copy of a message Twitch sent her. “After further discussions between Partnerships, Safety Ops and Trusty and Safety there is alignment between all teams that breastfeeding is not and will not be against the ToS.” 

 “As you so eloquently put it ‘breastfeeding is not lewd’ and we agree with you,” they added and revealed the the site’s guidelines will need to be updated.

Twitch has had a lot of controversy regarding what is and what is not considered nudity lately. Recent, xQc was apparently supposed to be suspended for three days after he showed what he called “a piece of dick” during a broadcast.

However, the very next day, the streaming platform restored his account. 

It will be interesting to see what else changes with Twitch in the future as the company decides what is acceptable to broadcast and what isn’t. 

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