Thursday, May 28, 2015

Twitch Update: No More AO Games

Twitch is undergoing more changes, now stamping out AO titles from their servers. If a game is rated AO by the ESRB, you can not stream it. Their goal is to create a safe environment for their users, with the understanding that a number of their customers are under 18 years of age. With the rise of Let's Play videos and YouTube stars, kids turn to internet celebs for their entertainment.

Originally they made game specific decisions on what and was not acceptable content. Some AO games dance the line, while others are no worse then an M rated product. But it can be a battle with users because the guidelines were never really clear. If the content in GTA is okay, why isn't this section of Leisure Suit Larry that has no violence, swearing, or nudity?

So to add to the ease of the consumer, and their staff, now it's a blanket of no AO games.

To be fair, the list of AO games is pretty small. I doubt that many users are actually playing these games, but with the Mature filter tag, it seemed to be a free-for-all on content. And if you're wondering about a game being M in the states but 18+ in Europe? That's okay to play. The "safe list" of games are based on the ESRB ratings, and their ratings along. It would get too complicated when you throw in the European and various other markets. Keep it simple.


  1. My only issue with this, I'd say, is the idea of the rest of the world adhering to the ESRB (i.e. American) standards. That's about it, though, because I frankly think this is a good idea. Twitch is trying to curb severely adult content being streamed to minors, and this is a smart way to do it.

    Also, it's a pretty blatant middle-finger to Hatred, considering its imminent release, which is a very business-smart way of handling that without saying, "screw this game in particular."

    1. Agreed. But I can also see why it would be a ball-buster for Twitch if they have to consider all of the rating systems in place. GTA has 4 different ratings I can think of in 2 continents. Just 2 continents. Crazy. I can only imagine the headaches that would ensue for Twitch staff if they have to check every single game the crosses their servers, and the arguments that follow. "This is good in this country, but we can't show it in this country, but it's okay for an M in this one." Yeah. No. I'm having GameStop flashbacks now. lol And given the longevity of the ESRB, and Twitch being a US company, I'm not surprised they went with their standards as the baseline.

      And yes. Hatred. That game is going to be hard-lined, fast. But it was a business-savvy way to respond to it. lol


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