Boasting an impressive 25,000,000 unique viewers every month, Twitch is by far the most popular live streaming platform in the Western world. While it’s mostly known for video games, the platform also hosts a wide variety of other content. One of the more popular categories of such content is online gambling.
The presence of gambling activities on the platform is a complex, multifaceted issue that sparks heated debates in the twitch community whenever it’s discussed. Read this article to find out everything you need to know about the current status and legality of Twitch gambling streams.
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Twitch Gambling Rules: Is It Legal to Stream Gambling Content on Twitch?
First things first: are gambling streams even legal? The short answer to this question is yes. The long answer is that it’s complicated.
For the most part, gambling streams are completely legal. For example, if you were to start your own live casino Twitch channel, would not have to worry about facing any legal repercussions for doing so. Your online casino Twitch account would also not violate the platform’s terms of service. But all of this is only true if you follow a certain set of rules when conducting your gambling activities.
The most important of these rules is, obviously, legality. Streamers must be of legal gambling age and the gambling activities they are streaming must be legal in their country of residence. For example, if online gambling is not legal in your country, you cannot legally start and run a Twitch casino slots channel.
Choice of Gambling Venue
The venue the streamer plays on also matters. Casino streamers playing on a legitimate, licensed, and regulated gambling site are unlikely to get into trouble. On the other hand, those using gambling streams to deceive their audience by promoting a scam casino will inevitably get banned.
Twitch is very serious about fighting scammers. In recent years, there’s been a war on fake casino streaming channels. Such channels promote disreputable venues by altering the win rates and streaming themselves getting big win after big win. Although some of these channels manage to stay active for long periods of time, they are inevitably banned.
Mature Audience Flag
Lastly, in order to protect children from the negative influence of gambling, your stream needs to be clearly labeled as serving content for a “Mature Audience”. Some jurisdictions also require gambling streamers to put up information about responsible gaming practices, as well as websites people can turn to if they are suffering from gambling addiction, in their channel descriptions.
Twitch Gambling Policy
As of June 2021, all casino streams must abide by the Twitch gambling policy, a set of rules designed especially to regulate twitch slot and card game streams. Here are the most important aspects of the policy:
- 30-minute limit. Streamers can only show gambling games in increments up to 30 minutes. If they don’t want to get in trouble, streamers must break up their gambling content with something else periodically.
- Inability to advertise online casinos. While playing online slots is allowed on Twitch, the platform has been loud and clear about their stance on anything that looks even remotely like online casino advertising.
- Legal age. The streamers must be of legal gambling age in the jurisdiction from which they are streaming. Otherwise, Twitch will interpret their stream as an illegal activity.
Twitch Raffle Rules
Giveaways and raffles are very popular on Twitch. To discourage its platform from being used for gambling, Twitch has implemented a set of rules that all Twitch raffles must abide by:
- Users cannot pay for participation in the raffle. Subscriptions and donations count as «payment» for these purposes. If the streamer wants to create a paid raffle, they must obtain an online gambling license.
- All users must have equal opportunities to win. The streamer cannot give any preference to their subscribers or people who donate more than others. Some users attempt to get around this rule by implementing a pseudo-currency with which their «reward» their users for certain tasks (e.g. donating).
Gambling Skins on Twitch: Is It Considered Real Gambling?
When it comes to CS:GO skin gambling and other types of video game item gambling, Twitch’s policy is quite clear. If the items you’re gambling for are exchangeable for real money, Twitch gambling rules will apply to your content.
For a real-life example of what not to do, let’s take a look at the case of James Phantoml0rd Varga. The popular streamer received a permanent ban for streaming himself playing on a Counter Strike: Global Offensive skin gambling website.
The reason Varga got banned wasn’t because he was streaming a gambling activity. As we discussed above, that’s perfectly legal. Varga was banned because he owned that skin betting website and didn’t disclose the fact to his audience.
Varga also used his access to the website to tip the skin gambling odds in his favor. This was done in order to make his viewers believe they might get a big win if they played on the website.
Taken altogether, Vargo’s behavior can be summed up in one word: fraud. Hence, it’s no surprise that he was permanently banned from Twitch.
Later on, Phantoml0rd went on to sue Twitch for removing him from the platform. Here’s a short recap of what went down:
Gambling in Twitch Chat: Are Twitch Raffles and Giveaways Legal?
When it comes to raffles and giveaways, their legality should be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Using a twitch bot to give a random viewer a non-monetary reward, such as letting them choose the next game you’ll play on your stream, is perfectly fine. This is because they didn’t pay anything to participate in the raffle and what they receive for winning does not have a monetary value.
In most cases, if subscribing to your channel or paying a certain sum of money was not a condition for entering, giving a monetary prize to the winner of a raffle is also fine. Most publisher-sponsored giveaways with gifts of free games fall into this category.
Giving a prize with no monetary value to a paid subscriber is also fine. For example, you could use a random number generator to make one of them your Twitch moderator for a month.
What is decidedly illegal is actual gambling in Twitch chat, i.e. having users pay for a chance to participate in a giveaway with monetary rewards. Having a paid subscription to your channel may be interpreted as a payment.
Twitch Betting Bot (Twitch Chat Gambling)
A relatively new development in the casino streaming scene are Twitch betting bots. These bots allow viewers to place wagers on the outcome of an event on the stream, in a way that is similar to live betting on sports.
For example, during a poker stream, users can bet their virtual points on whether the streamer will win the current hand.
Twitch chat gambling is becoming more popular than ever, with more and more streamers adding this mechanic to their broadcasts.
Top Twitch Casino Streamers
Here is a list of the top 5 most popular Twitch casino streamers as of January 2021:
- ROSHTEIN (total followers: 465,000)
- CasinoDaddy (total followers: 164,000)
- ClassyBeef (total followers: 139,000)
- JugiPelaa (total followers: 66,500)
- Jarttu84 (total followers: 54,100)
Frequently Asked Questions About Twitch Gambling
Article updated on 27/01/2021.
Can You Stream Gambling on Twitch?+Yes, gambling streams are perfectly legal and do not violate Twitch’s terms of service in any way whatsoever.
What Are the Rules for Streaming Gambling on Twitch?+Gambling streams can be only be run by players of legal gambling age who reside in countries where gambling activities are legal. Streamers must not use their broadcasts to deceive their audiences. Streamers must also put a “Mature Audiences” warning on all streams of gambling activities.
How to Gamble on Twitch?+As long as you comply with the above-mentioned rules, you are free to start your very own online gambling channel.
How Do You Play Casino Games on Twitch?+To play casino games on Twitch, you must create a Twitch account, choose a reputable online gambling site to play at, and launch your stream. If you do not know how to set up a Twitch stream, this guide will help you get started.
Who Are the Biggest Twitch Slot Streamers?+As of January 2021, the top 3 biggest Twitch slot streamers are ROSHTEIN, CasinoDaddy, and ClassyBeef.
Can You Gamble on Twitch Chat?+Yes, many streamers use Twitch gambling bots to allow viewers to gamble on their performance.
What is the Raffle on Twitch?+Raffles are free giveaways that Twitch streamers periodically organize to promote their streams.
How Can One Set Up a Twitch Betting Bot?+There is a multitude of ways to set up a Twitch betting bot. Solutions range from free options that require extensive coding knowledge to one-click solutions that the streamers need to pay for.