After a year that saw it struggle to protect its users from abuse and harassment, Twitch has rolled out a 2021 safety effort that includes a look at how the company plans to tackle the issue in 2022. Specifically, Angela Hesion, Twitch’s vice president of global trust and security, says the company. It will update the user notification and appeal process.
It also plans to upgrade its feature. The artificial intelligence tool, which the company launched at the end of last year, automatically identifies individuals it thinks may be evading bans. In 2022, Twitch made planned updates about how operators can use information from that tool. As the company previously indicated, it also plans to update the sexual content policy to clarify various aspects of it. Twitch simultaneously intends to share more “better” educational content across its Security Center and other areas.
Twitch spent much of the latter half of 2021 trying to stop automated “hate raid” harassment campaigns. The attacks saw malicious individuals using thousands of bots to send spam in hateful language, often targeting broadcast channels from marginalized communities. In September, the company filed a lawsuit against CruzzControl and CreatineOverdose, two of the most productive individuals involved in those campaigns.
“We probably won’t be able to eliminate this matter [hate raids] Hesson said, “However, it claims that Twitch has ‘significantly’ reduced the number of bots on its platform through some of its actions in 2021. In 2022, it appears to be continuing this work through the improvements announced today.”
If the company’s safety roadmap feels too light on details, Hesion says it’s out of necessity. “The honest and unfortunate truth is that we can’t always be specific because bad actors can and have used this transparency to try to thwart our efforts,” she said.
At the same time, the CEO acknowledged that Twitch needs to do a better job of communicating what it’s doing to make people feel safe on its platform. It’s easy to see why the company says so. Feeling that the hate raids that were happening on Twitch couldn’t get any worse, several creators banded together for the lack of action they saw from the company.
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