Esports Under Threat as Twitch's New Advertising Guidelines Target Third-Party Ads
Twitch's recent update to its has sparked significant concern within the Dota 2 community. The revised policy restricts the use of burned-in video, display, and banner ads during streams, limiting monetization opportunities for both tournament organizers and individual streamers.
Twitch responded to community backlash over the new advertising guidelines, acknowledging the confusion caused and apologizing for the broad policy update. Twitch clarified that streamers' ability to work with sponsors would not be restricted and recognized the importance of these partnerships for revenue generation. Twitch admitted that the policy language was not effective and promised to rewrite the guidelines, expressing gratitude for community feedback and assuring users of future notifications. The organization also rolled back some of the changes made shortly after the community backlash.
Impact on Dota 2 Tournament Organizers
The restrictions on burned-in video, display, and banner ads imposed by Twitch's new guidelines have the potential to hinder the revenue-generating capabilities of Dota 2 (and other Esports) tournament organizers. Previously, these ad formats provided a crucial source of income for organizers by allowing them to showcase sponsorships and gather funds to support the event.
With the new limitations introduced by Twitch's guidelines, Tournament organizers may be forced to run full-screen ads that hide the stream entirely, forcing fans to miss out on key moments during matches, including intense team fights or critical gameplay decisions. These limitations present a challenge for tournament organizers in attracting potential sponsors and monetizing their events effectively.
Streamers Caught in the Middle
Not only do Twitch's new guidelines impact tournament organizers, but they also have ramifications for individual streamers who heavily rely on sponsorships and branded content to support their streaming careers. Before these guidelines were introduced, streamers would often use burned-in video and banner ads which allowed them to monetize their streams without their viewers missing out on key moments.
These streamers often have direct relationships with sponsors, and the ability to display burned-in video, display, and banner ads allowed them to maintain these partnerships and earn revenue. However, with the restrictions now in place, streamers may find it challenging to meet the requirements of their sponsors while adhering to Twitch's guidelines. The limitations imposed by the new policy put Twitch in a delicate position, potentially creating a rift between streamers and their sponsors and impacting streamers' ability to monetize their content effectively.
The recent updates highlight the complex dynamics between the streaming platform, individual streamers, and their sponsors. The new guidelines can complicate the negotiation process between streamers and sponsors, potentially affecting the income stream of streamers and hindering their ability to provide engaging content to their viewers
Moving forward, the guidelines may seem to be restrictive for individual streamers and organizations on Twitch, however, Twitch’s promise to revise its ad guidelines serves as a starting point for the organization to align itself with its users and other organizations within the platform. As the streaming landscape continues to evolve, it remains crucial for all stakeholders to find a balance between ad policies, sponsorships, and the financial sustainability of Dota 2 tournaments and individual streamers.