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Twitch seriously botched this streamer ban

Is Twitch a little too haphazard with its bans and suspensions? That question is being raised more and more as of late, especially following an episode in which the service suspended a streamer for five days before admitting that it was "a mistake."

The streamer in question goes by the name PayMoneyWubby. according to the website Insider. And by the looks of it, PayMoneyWubby isn't a content creator that shies away from controversy. He doesn't stream a lot of video games, instead engaging in chats and hosting game shows for his viewers. And his YouTube channel, in particular, is a trove of eyebrow-raising takes, featuring titles like "Single Mothers are ruining Father's Day," and "Spiritual Channeling and the Return of Fake Animal Rescues."

But what got PayMoneyWubby banned from Twitch wasn't a particular swipe he took at a group of people, or his covering a topic that would be considered risque by Twitch's standards. Instead, he appeared to have been hit with a ban because of the platform's newfound sensitivity to streaming in public. After Dr. Disrespect got hit with a ban this year for streaming in a bathroom at E3, Twitch has made more of an effort to sniff these types of inappropriate streams out. And that makes sense. Dr. Disrespect didn't just violate the privacy of others with his stream: he violated California law.

The problem with Twitch's action against PayMoneyWubby, however, was that he wasn't streaming in a bathroom: he was streaming in a public restaurant. Not only that, PayMoneyWubby actually had permission from the restaurant to do so. Yet the ban from Twitch came in swift. And PayMoneyWubby, needless to say, was not happy.

Twitch apologizes for the ban

Five days is an awfully long time to be gone as a streamer. Most content creators on Twitch and YouTube keep to a schedule; they upload or stream on certain days, take certain days off, and generally keep their audience in the loop about when they can expect new stuff. It's understandable, then, that PayMoneyWubby would be a little miffed.

Not only was he banned for doing the right thing — streaming in a place where he had permission to do so — his channel was initially put out of commission for 14 days. That's an eternity in Twitch time.

Fortunately, after five days, PayMoneyWubby received the following email from Twitch:

"Your account was recently suspended or blocked due to a mistake on our part. I've gone ahead and reversed this suspension on your account, so you are free to use our services again." And just like that, PayMoneyWubby was free to go about streaming again on Twitch, where he undoubtedly makes a substantial amount of income from ad revenue and donations.

Such a short suspension doesn't seem like a big deal from the outside looking in, as all of PayMoneyWubby's followers and subscribers are still present. Judging by his recent streams, it doesn't look like he lost much of his audience. In fact, news about the ban may have helped gain him some popularity with Twitch's viewership.

According to PayMoneyWubby, however, Twitch's actions had some serious consequences for the streaming side of his business.

The damage has already been done, says PayMoneyWubby

To say PayMoneyWubby came storming back onto Twitch is an understatement. In one of his first post-ban broadcasts, he took it to the team over at Twitch, performing a skit as a clown in which he lampooned the platform for its uneven application of its Terms of Service, evening going so far as to imply that Twitch only pays attention to cleavage when choosing female Partners.

And he didn't stop there. While showing the apology email he received from Twitch, he claimed his five days off of the platform ended up costing him "thousands" of dollars, as he'd recently collaborated with another content creator and expected a bunch of new Twitch viewers as a result. Not only that, the streamer came pretty close to losing a brand new sponsor after the ban went into effect.

Many streamers rely on outside partnerships to supplement the income they generate from ads and donations, so having a sponsorship put into jeopardy is something that could've greatly impacted PayMoneyWubby's bottom line going forward.  Fortunately, he was able to renegotiate that particular deal. But the fact remains, the ban wasn't ever supposed to happen in the first place. It was a mistake; one that Twitch, at the very least, owned up to.

We'll have to keep an eye on PayMoneyWubby's situation going forward. Perhaps some of the sponsors who bailed will come back now that the streamer's name has been cleared of any wrongdoing. In any event, the whole debacle raises that question we brought up earlier: is Twitch a bit too quick to ban some streamers, especially when it seems to let the behavior of others slide on the regular?

It's some food for thought as we head into the holiday season.