When Twitch started, it soon became the premier streaming site in a few years. Several pioneering streamers got the support of the platform to pursue their passion. Soon, the platform became the ultimate go-to platform for slots fans who wanted to enjoy or learn about gaming.
However, around 2016, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive developer Valve warned skin betting sites from using its skins. Consequently, Twitch started cracking down on streamers streaming skin betting channels and warned members about promoting content from these sites.
The interest in casino gaming reached a new high at the end of 2018. By September of the same year, the platform had created a category for casino gaming. The initial channels were just 18, but they attracted over 4,500 viewers each day.
By December of the same year, the platform created a category specifically for slots. This category soon started attracting over 10,000 a day. However, some market watchers started noticing several unlicensed operators featured in the streams. Some accounts were also suspicious due to their high growth rate.
As casino gaming gained momentum, operations jumped on board. Providers like PokerStars started allowing users to connect their accounts to their Twitch accounts. Better than normal growth was noticed in several Twitch channels.
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic opened the floodgates for casino streaming growth. Because many people are unable to leave their homes, online gaming and watching have become popular pastimes.
Some channels also raised cash for charity during the period. For example, the LetsGiveItaSpin channel, hosted by Kim Hultman, raised €47,000 for relief efforts after a 24-hour streaming challenge. At this time, there were few concerns from Twitch.
June 2021 and 2022
It was in mid-2021 that controversy over gambling streaming started. Many streamers were found to receive cash from their casinos, misrepresenting the risk involved. Other users also started complaining about the high number of casino gaming channels.
However, the real crackdown came in 2022 when it banned all links or casino codes to the operators. New platforms started to emerge to counter the Twitch challenge. The sector took a hit, but numbers started coming up again.
The crackdown has gone on until the latest updates on unlicensed operators. It is expected that there will be additional restrictions in the near future.