The banning spree continues as StephenIRL's Twitch channel has been one of the latest to go dark. StephenIRL was a very quick-to-rise streamer, using his bounty hunter occupation as the main subject for his content. In June, he experienced instant internet stardom when a clip of him busting a door down to apprehend a woman went viral, gathering over 120,000 views (now deleted). Since then, Stephen had a seen a steady gain in followers and views.
However, on September 11th, he received word from Twitch that his channel would be permanently removed from the platform and took to Twitter and Discord to inform his fans.
Just received notice from Twitch of an Indefinite Ban that goes into effect tonight. Last Stream Debrief will be at 1800 HRS CST.— Stephen (@StephenIRL_) September 11, 2019
Not long after, he announced via another Twitter post that Twitch had removed his channel even earlier than they originally told him, without explanation. Nevertheless, he took to YouTube to explain the situation in a since deleted video.
His indefinite ban was the result of "brandishing a weapon" on a live Twitch broadcast during one of his raids. The reason itself isn't necessarily odd, but the timing of it seems to be a bit interesting when taking into account Stephen's line of work, not to mention consistent use of weaponry on stream.
Supposedly, a moderator preemptively cut the offending stream short, as an out of context clip was sent to their staff that implied the person inside had a gun.
Although we've heard nothing yet on whether or not Stephen will be returning to Twitch, bans can be appealed, even when labeled "indefinite." Apparently, he is indeed appealing the ban in an attempt to get the channel reinstated; this comes as no surprise considering he had over 90,000 follows at the time of its removal.
Twitch often seems to find itself scrambling to ensure that its streamers are acting in compliance with their guidelines, but judging by the reactions of many of the platform's viewers, the company might look to find a way to clarify their approach. Users tend to react negatively to vague and abrupt suspensions of their favorite streamers. However, even fans of Stephen have pointed out the difficulty that Twitch's moderators are faced with when interpreting the trickier details of Twitch's TOS — many remain hopeful for the channel's return.