No naughty games on Twitch

Twitch announced today that it has revised its Rules of Conduct and would not allow games ratted AO by the ESRB to be streamed on its service.  

If a game’s US version is rated Adults Only by the ESRB, you should not broadcast that game on Twitch. However, ESRB rated Mature versions of Adults Only titles are permitted for streaming, such as Mature versions of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy.

Games rated 18+ by other rating systems are fine to stream, so long as they are not rated AO by the ESRB, and they don’t violate the standard language of our RoC and ToS.

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Our goal at Twitch is to create a safe, welcoming, inclusive community platform where everyone can feel comfortable and have fun. From time to time, we update our Rules of Conduct (RoC) in pursuit of this goal and to match emerging issues in the video game industry.

Previously, we made game-specific decisions about which games would and would not be available for broadcast – sometimes due to overtly sexual content, sometimes due to gratuitous violence. This is unsustainable and unclear, generating only further confusion among Twitch broadcasters. We would like to make this policy as transparent as possible.

Today, we’re updating the RoC with regard to Adult Only (AO) games. Simply put, AO games are not welcome on Twitch. Please refer to the ESRB’s Ratings Guide and list of Adults Only games for more information.

While the ESRB ratings apply exclusively to US titles, our policy extends to versions of these games in all territories. Generally, if the US version is rated for Adults Only (18+) or has an equivalent rating in your territory, you should not broadcast that game on Twitch.

The RoC is a living document that we update regularly based on community feedback and industry developments. We would appreciate your feedback, too.

As a parent of a kid that loves watching people play video games, I'm glad this is the case.  I don't think its the best possible solution though.  What if instead Twitch allowed streamers to set thier content level, perhaps if I'm streaming an E game it sets me to E and if I swear a lot I can increase it.  If I load up an M game the system sets me to M.  Then give parents the ability to set parental permissions on accounts.  I give my son a twitch account, I can flag if he can see chat or not, I can set what level of content I allow him to watch.  This makes it a lot easier to keep the safe, inclusive and welcoming tone that they talk about in their blog.