Following a surge in targeted harassment on the streaming platform Twitch, an organized boycott of the site by users, and lawsuits against two suspected harassers, Twitch announced new measures it is taking to protect users from the platform. Targeted sexual harassment, including a new feature: phone verification chat. Twitch told Polygon on Wednesday that the new setting will enable anchors to require “some or all users to verify phone numbers before chatting.” New features will also be launched on Wednesday.
A blog post from the company said: “Containing this behavior is and will continue to be our top priority.” “We are optimistic that this will have a significant impact on curbing any chat-based harassment, including targeted bots. Attack,” a representative told Polygon via email.
Creators can also add email-verified chats, and they will be able to customize chat rules according to different standards. For example, the creator can set it to verify only the users who have followed in a certain period of time.
According to Twitch’s description of how the feature works, the idea is that phone-verified chats will make it harder for bad actors to evade channel bans by creating new accounts. With this feature, users can verify up to 5 accounts with one phone number.
Before this announcement, Twitch also took legal actions against at least two accounts that it determined to be behind the attack. At the time it had not announced expanded security features.
All of these actions occurred after the increase in harassment activities against creators on the platform. The above-mentioned “robot attack” refers to a harassment technique called “hate raid”, through which malicious actors use the “raid” function of the platform to send hate messages to creators’ chats, usually using a robot account.
What started as an awareness-raising label turned into an organized boycott called “ADayOffTwitch”, calling on anchors not to broadcast live all day, which made Ratings drop On a streaming site owned by Amazon.