Twitch is taking measures against “hate raids” with its new Shield Mode.
LGBT streamers have long been rallying against hate raids, where groups of bullies target specific users’ chats to harass them. Twitch users have boycotted the platform over the issue, while Twitch has sued users for engaging in the behavior.
It’s a hot-button issue, and many have felt Twitch hasn’t done enough to prevent hate raids. On Nov. 30, the platform launched Shield Mode, a new safety tool to combat intense harassment.
“Shield Mode makes it easy to pre-set safety settings and helps you quickly remove harassing messages and users from chat,” Twitch said on Twitter.
If a streamer feels like their chat is vulnerable to harassment, they can enter Shield Mode to reinforce its safety.
What makes Shield Mode a step up is the ability to “Bulk Ban” or automatically mass ban people who use specific phrases the streamer has deemed inappropriate. Users can add these banned words in the “Terms and Phrases” tab.
“Banned terms and phrases will reset after every Shield Mode session,” Twitch stated. “So your community isn’t accidentally impacted by older terms that are no longer being used maliciously.”
Another feature of Shield Mode is “No First-Time Chatters.” This allows streamers to permit entry only to chat users who have been in previous chats and prevents new users — or potential bullies – from entering to start hate raids.
“Safety work is never over, and we’re working on more tools that make it easier to moderate your channel,” Twitch said. “We’re also working aggressively to stop more harm before it ever occurs.”
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