After streamer AverageHarry was permanently banned because his account was created when he was under 13, Twitch viewers have pointed out that other streamers in a similar position have not faced the same consequences.
Twitch regularly faces scrutiny over their moderation decisions and bans for streamers, which often spark confusion over what exactly the rules allow.
The DMCA drama from October left many big streamers stripping their channels of content in fear of a takedown, and Twitch’s TOS policy change that restricted the use of words like ‘simp’ left streamers in fear of breaking the rules unintentionally.
15-year-old streamer AverageHarry was denied Twitch partnership earlier in January due to the fact that he made his account before the age of 13, after waiting 72 days for a response to his application.
While that was already a pretty tough blow, things were made worse when, on January 23, he was perma-banned. He clarified on Twitter that: “I am allowed to make another account, but I have just lost nearly 90k followers.”
But now Twitch users are noticing some inconsistencies in Twitch’s decision to ban Harry, as popular streamers, with millions of followers, also made their account when under 13 – but have not faced bans.
One user pointed out that hugely popular 16-year-old streamer TommyInnit had his account when he was only 11, but has not faced the same issues in terms of partner status and bans. The user called it “gross hypocrisy” from Twitch.
Tommyinnit’s Twitch account was made when he was 11 years old. Gross hypocrisy from Twitch or what? from r/LivestreamFail
Another commenter pointed out that several Fortnite streamers are all in a similar position, with some of them having likely started their accounts when they were under the age of 13. Streamer ONSCREEN highlighted a list of streamers with millions of followers, all of whom made accounts when younger than 13 – some as young as 10.
If Twitch followed through on bans for all of the streamers who made their account when they were below 13, even if they have since surpassed that age, it would certainly spell bad news for a lot of large communities on the site.
However, it is also possible that there are conditions within the Twitch TOS that are accounting for these discrepancies, meaning some streamers are still permitted to keep their account according to the rules, even if they made their account before the age of 13.
The reason for the 13-year-old age limit is linked to COPPA laws, which aim to protect young people online. In 2019, Google and YouTube had to pay a record $170 million to settle allegations of COPPA laws.
Harry revealed that he only signed up for Twitch two months before he turned 13, saying: “I spent 2 years and nearly 2000 hours streamed just for it to be taken away because I signed up 2 months early.”
Fans of Harry are now looking to Twitch for answers regarding the confusing situation.
AverageHarry makes new Twitch account
As he was allowed to do, AverageHarry has now made a new Twitch account, and asked for his fans to follow him there.
Within 24 hours of opening the account, he has already accrued 3,700 followers, and will be gunning to hit five figures soon. But, getting back to his original 90,000 will prove a challenge.