Popular streamer, Hasan Piker (otherwise known as "HasanAbi"), revealed that Twitch has warned him not to promote virtual private network (VPN) software to his viewers as a means to bypass ads on the Amazon-owned streaming platform. This was revealed during a recent livestream that Hasan hosted on 14th October.
An hour into his Twitch stream, Hasan said: "If you'd like to enjoy this broadcast in an ad-free experience, there are some things you can do." The streamer continued to add that there were some things he could say, but some things that he was "warned not to say."
Twitch told Hasan to stop promoting VPNs to his fans
Continuing to explain legitimate ways that viewers could avoid ads, Hasan said: "You can, for example, subscribe with a $5 subscription; you can subscribe with a free subscription if you have a Twitch Prime, that is." He then (very discretely) hinted that viewers could use a VPN, saying: "You can also do some other stuff that I can't say anymore."
The Twitch star later said that he "got in trouble" in the past and jokingly said that he removed the word "VPN" from his vernacular soon thereafter.
Understandably, Hasan telling his viewers to bypass ads on Twitch is rather unethical (at least from a business standpoint) given that he is a partnered streamer on the platform and earns literally millions of dollars for it. With that said, there is also a very valid argument to had regarding the seemingly burdensome (*cough* broken) way in which ads are shown on Twitch and I'm certainly not the only person that feels this way.
"Honestly, it is a bit ridiculous that streamers sign expensive contracts with running ads being a big part of them and then constantly tell people ways to avoid the ads. I don't mind it, them taking money away from Amazon, but it's still a bit ridiculous and definitely amusing," a Redditor wrote, adding that it's ridiculous that "Twitch's ads system is so broken that streamers have to recommend their viewers ways to avoid ad."
The same Reddit user put forward a valid argument regarding ads on YouTube, saying that it is "significantly better" and that you "never [hear] big YouTubers having to recommend their viewers ways to avoid ads."
The user concluded, saying: "Twitch needs to figure out their ads system, sh*t's broken and unsustainable. Ads shouldn't be such a burden" and I absolutely agree.
And don't get me wrong -- there is certainly a place for ads, but I certainly feel that it should be done in a far less intrusive manner than outright stealing the entire stream. To make things worse, the ads aren't even skippable and there's no way to scale down the bitrate.
I also feel especially sorry for mobile users who, for the most part, don't really have many solutions to avoid ads on Twitch, other than using VPN software.
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Featured image courtesy of Cosmopolitan.