A Twitch streamer was threatened by hundreds of people, after she made a comment during a stream about having killed a dog.
Simone Scott is a part-time streamer on Twitch under the name Aqualadora. Scott guested on a stream last night hosted by well known streamer RajjPatel, and when asked what the worst thing she ever did was, Scott claimed to have intentionally killed a four-year-old dog.
“I used to work as a veterinary technician and I once killed someone’s dog on purpose,” Scott can be heard saying in a saved video. “No one knew because, you know, professional ... I mean, it was a really bad person.”
Another video that was posted just after includes more of Scott’s comment on the apparent confession from her conversation with Patel. Scott can be heard saying “the dog was pretty shitty too,” before asking to “just move past this” not long after making the confession.
Patel’s livestream quickly caught attention. People began tweeting him asking why he allowed Scott onto his stream. Patel put out a statement on Twitter, saying that he did kick her off the show once she finished talking, adding that he doesn’t condone or tolerate the mistreatment of animals.
“The abuse of animals is completely unacceptable and morally reprehensible,” Patel said. “The individual involved was removed as a result and will never be welcome on my platform again. Im really upset about it and can’t believe that anybody would have the capacity to do something like that.”
News of Patel’s stream spread on Twitter overnight, with threads popping up on Discord and Reddit asking why Scott’s channel hasn’t been suspended or banned by Twitch administrative staff. Scott’s channel is still active at the time of this writing, and it’s hosting a very active chat discussing private details of Scott’s life.
The big question is whether or not what Scott said is an offense that could result in a ban or suspension from the company. Technically, what Scott said doesn’t directly break any of the company’s community guidelines, even if she led people to believe she was confessing to committing a serious crime. Polygon has reached out to Santa Cruz police for comment on whether Scott’s comments are being investigated.
Twitch’s guidelines state that streamers “must respect all applicable local, national, and international laws while using our services. Any content or activity featuring, encouraging, offering, or soliciting illegal activity is prohibited.” This is the tricky part. Scott didn’t feature anything illegal on her own channel, since she was streaming on Patel’s, nor did she encourage, offer or solicit illegal activity.
Scott then tweeted about the incident later this afternoon, referring to her statements as a joke and saying, “You would think this community would know how to recognize a troll when they see one.” If Scott was making a joke, however, Twitch’s guidelines state that users who “express diverse or unpopular points of view, or do so in humorous or controversial ways must make [their] intent clear.” Scott never did that during the stream.
But whether or not that’s the case, a streamer talking about personally being involved in the murder of an animal violates ethical standards. Conversation over transparency surrounding its rules, a controversial topic for the company, has returned with this situation. Twitch’s new guidelines, which are expected to roll out in the coming weeks, dictate that off-platform activity and content can result in a permanent ban. If Twitch deems Scott’s alleged behavior and actions to fall in-line with its new policies, Scott could face severe consequences.
“Users now have the ability to add off-platform conduct to their reports,” a Twitch representative told Polygon at the time. “Twitch will consider a number of factors to determine the intent and context of any reported hateful conduct.”
There are other murmurs of concern among the Twitch community that threats being left in Scott’s chat and comments being sent to her via Twitter break the company’s rules, and could result in even more bans for angry people. The chat logs from Scott’s Twitch page today include threats of violence against Scott, and links to information about her private life including where she goes to school and who her bosses are. Twitch’s stance on harassment states that “revealing someone’s personal information against their will or with the intent to harm them” is in direct violations of its rules.
“Violating our policy against harassment will result in your account being suspended,” the section on harassment reads. “Depending on the severity of the offense, harassers may be indefinitely suspended on the first violation.”
Commenters on Scott’s Twitch page and anyone tweeting derogatory or violent threats at her could soon face severe penalties once Twitch’s new rules go into effect next month.
“Conduct we deem to be hateful will result in an immediate indefinite suspension,” a blog post reads. “Hate simply has no place in the Twitch community.”
Polygon has reached out to Twitch for further clarification on whether Scott’s comments could result in a suspension or ban. Polygon has also reached out to Scott about her comments.
Update: Polygon has removed links and screenshots that included reference to details about Scott’s personal information.
Update 2: Scott tweeted about the incident this afternoon, referring to her comments as trolling. The story has been updated to reflect these changes. Polygon has reached out to her again for further comment.