Twitch has introduced Subscriber Streams, a new feature of the streaming platform that enables affiliates and partners to set streams that can only be viewed by subscribers of the channel.
To be eligible for the program, the host must be an affiliate or partner, not have violated Twitch’s Community Guidelines, and have streamed for 90 unique broadcast days. Streams broadcast to paid subscribers can continue to log them as VODS (videos on demand), but they too will only be available for subscribers. Clips, however, can be viewable for all.
“If you are not a current subscriber of a channel broadcasting a Subscriber Stream, you can still tune in for a free preview,” Twitch said. “You will be notified when your free preview has expired. A free preview is available daily for each channel broadcasting a Subscriber Stream.”
Twitch is keen to emphasise that Subscriber Streams “are not private streams”, which means “whether or not your content is being broadcast to everyone or just your core supporters, the rules are the same” and “all content must follow Twitch’s Terms of Service and Community Guidelines“.
Twitch recently added compulsory two-factor authentication for new streamers after a number of new accounts broadcast illegal content, including pornography, last month. In a series of tweets shared over the week, Twitch apologised for the inconvenience but insisted “the safety of our community is our top priority and we’re doing everything we can to restore all access as quickly as possible”.
While these kind of illegal livestreams have happened before, it’s thought the most recent incident – which seemed to primarily target new channels attached to channels listed in Twitch’s Artifact game directory – was particularly prolific. Consequently, Twitch has now made two-factor authentication mandatory for all new users, and temporarily prevented new sign-ups from live-streaming at all.