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Twitch addresses the 'dark corner' of the games industry with new transparency policy

New policy changes at Twitch are aiming to protect both viewers and content creators by highlighting if content was paid-for or sponsored, the company said today in a post on its official blog.

The game streaming platform will now provide clear labels for videos created as part of a partnership between the content maker and an additional party. Similarly, content sponsored by Twitch itself will be marked with a tag and tweets linking to that content will also include a warning.

Despite this, no new policies are in place to highlight content from Twitch users created as part of a deal with third-parties. Instead, the company is leaving users to declare their own external sponsorships.

"While we have always encouraged our broadcasters to acknowledge if they are playing games as part of a promotional campaign, we are now establishing a much more transparent approach to all paid programs on our platform and hope that it sets a precedent for the broader industry," reads a post on its official blog.

"Simply put: We want complete transparency and unwavering authenticity with all content and promotions that have a sponsor relationship."

According to the company, the decision to enforce this level of transparency was the result of concerns over the ethics of sponsorship.

"Because of a lack of clear best practices and shifting regulatory guidelines, coupled with a sometimes less-than-transparent sponsor relationship, these kinds of campaigns have become a bit of a dark corner in the industry, and that's bad for everyone.

"For these reasons, gamers can tend to look skeptically on the ecosystem because they don't know what is paid-for content and what is not. It also opens influencers to potential criticism."

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