Dr Disrespect’s removal from Twitch made massive waves last year. The former Call of Duty developer was one-year into a two-year exclusivity contract with Twitch, but in late June 2020 Twitch banned the streamer for a supposed violation of the platform’s terms of service. Twitch never clarified exactly what Dr Disrespect did that warranted the ban and cessation of his contract, and in an interview afterwards the streamer still didn’t appear to entirely know the reason why.
One suggested theory at the time was that Dr Disrespect’s final stream, which brought up controversial conspiracy theorist David Icke and his documentary, might have been the reason for the ban. But in an interview with the Washington Post, the streamer said he was only informed of the ban while watching a fellow streamers channel.
“We worked really hard to get to this point, and all of a sudden it’s just like everything’s kind of halted,” Dr Disrespect said at the time.
The streamer would eventually return to streaming through YouTube, where he remains today with 3.46 million subscribers. But in the most recent stream, the former Call of Duty community manager said he learned of Twitch’s reasoning “months ago”.
“A lot of people ask, do you know the reason–I do know the reason why now. I’ve known for months now, the reason why,” he said. “There’s a reason why we’re suing the fuck out of [Twitch] … I don’t know how else to put it.”
Providing context, the streamer explained that the media attention and resulting coverage around Twitch’s ban — with no clarity as to why — has had an material impact on his life. “You also see Doctor banned from Twitch, no reason why. You think a big time company like Nike is going to want to work with that question mark, or Disney? It fucking sucks. It really fucking sucks. I don’t know how else to put it, it’s affected us in so many different ways.”
Earlier in the stream, the streamer clarified that him and his team are making “a fourth, a quarter” on YouTube now, compared to what he was making on Twitch a year ago.
“Whether it’s obvious or not, the blacklisting, the shadowbanning — it’s happening. And as well as you think we’re doing, and we’re doing well enough, I tell you man: it’s been extremely disheartening, it’s been a rollercoaster of emotion, and it absolutely fucking sucks.”
The only public statement Twitch has provided to date is that “we take appropriate action when we have evidence that a streamer has acted in violation of our Community Guidelines or Terms of Service”. The platform has never clarified what that evidence was, and they have never publicly refuted allegations from Dr Disrespect that there was no communication prior to the ban. But as we’ve seen with the Epic and Apple lawsuit, if this does go to court, we’re likely to learn plenty.