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To succeed as a Twitch streamer, you need to have a robust community that’s hyper-engaged with your content. Huge streamers like Pokimane, xQc, and Hasan Piker obtained millions of devoted followers by cultivating their streams to feel like a destination you’d want to visit and hang around in—hence the importance of Twitch chats, where viewers go to discuss the stream, the streamer, and more.
The more wholesome Twitch chatters spam emotes, type questions, and engage with the streamers, ultimately making a specific streamers’ scene feel vibrant and worth being a part of. But not every viewer provides a valuable resource—others enter the chat to cause chaos, push boundaries, or endlessly type slurs. To keep their community healthy and safe from breaking Twitch’s complicated Terms of Service, streamers can ban viewers. If, when, and why they ban viewers is up to their discretion—but like any punishment, there are some people who don’t take it too well.
When viewers get banned in a streamer’s chat, they have the chance to appeal the decision if the streamer has the option enabled. The streamer or their mods can then look at the messages the banned user has sent in the chat room and decide if it’s worth granting amnesty or sending them straight to the banned shadow realm. Streamers can even add a message back to the banned chatter explaining their decision. The excuses can be anything, from a brief lapse of judgment to pure, unbridled remorse for what they typed. That’s probably why seeing the plight of the most distraught members of their fan base pull in hundreds of thousands of views after the streamer turns it into content.
Here are some of the interesting and outlandish reasons why viewers have asked to get unbanned.
– One Kwite viewer posted a series of thirsty messages to streamer Kwite like “Whenever I see Kwite is live I literally bust a nut” and “Kwite I had a dream you were degrading me (best dream ever).” After a ban put them in the corner of shame, they responded with a ban appeal ending on a much sadder note.
“Sorry I thought it would be a funny joke,” they wrote. “I dreamed about my mom dying so I tried to just make a joke out of it considering I just found out he had breast cancer on my birth date last week to make a joke out of dumb shit.”
The viewer went on to say that Kwite is the only person that’s “keeping them alive” and that normally they don’t chat at all, so they weren’t aware of the rules. Kwite’s response was that he would probably go to hell if he didn’t give this viewer a chance, so they got unbanned.
One Saintone viewer really wanted to get unbanned and wrote a 500-word essay trying to convince the streamer to let them back in. Initially, the ban was instituted to force the viewer to go and study for their test, which they were neglecting. Saintone told the viewer to come back with a 500-word essay, seemingly as a joke, except the viewer did exactly that. It even had references and a very heartfelt apology.
Requests claiming the viewer wasn’t exactly responsible are common, but this is a new one. Streamer Niki Nihachu has a lengthy list of banned viewers, many of whom couldn’t stop themselves from writing misogynistic and body-shaming comments in her chat. One of those commenters, who thought it would be appropriate to spam chat asking for sex, wrote in an unban request that lightning struck their phone. “Pls I promise I didn’t do it,” they begged.
Miller Ross is a Twitch streamer with 2,700 followers who mainly plays RPGs and MOBAs. During a 24-hour stream in 2021, Ross passed out on camera and woke up to angry community messages after an active member paid for text-to-speech donations so they could spam the n-word. Though they did it anonymously, their PayPal information was linked back to them. Ross confronted them.
“He had this ridiculous story about how his PayPal had gotten hacked, and that they’d made a bunch of bogus transactions and that this was one of them,” Ross said. “Obviously I banned him.”
Normally, when people try and petition Hasan Piker to unban then, they express remorse, write in Turkish, or explain where they were coming from. Not this viewer, however. Prior to getting banned, they had flooded the chat asking Hasan for feet pictures seemingly at every opportunity. And the appeal request followed suit, for whatever reason.
“I’ve tasted a wide rage of indigenous fruits from the west andes mountains to the exotic produce of Malaysia and Thailand,” the message started. “But never has something caught my eye quite like Hasan’s large build but disproportionally small head. I can only imagine his feet are equally as disproportionate and need proof. Now my final offer is either you unban me so that I can look Hasan dead in his eyes and continue to ask him to provide feet pics, or you yourself provide.”
Hasan responded by noting all the different rules the viewer had violated, like spamming, being a weirdo, soliciting sex work without consent, and also the high crime of being a “foot guy” in the first place. Miraculously, though, the viewer got unbanned!
While Esfand was out in the California sun, a fan walked up to him and asked why he was banned. When asked why he was banned, he said “I think I said something weird.” But Esfand came with receipts, seeing that the chatter wrote “That’s why you are a fat piece of shit.” After some awkward back and forth, Esfand unbanned the user and promised to get up and do more IRL streams.
Twitch streamer XoAriel, who has 350,000 followers on the platform, regularly hosts her stream in a bikini by a pool, attracting an audience that requires heavy moderation to follow Twitch’s strict community guidelines. At any given time, she told Kotaku that she’ll have between “one and four moderators” banning people “once every 10 minutes or so.”
“We try to not ban people for little things, so like racist remarks, doxxing, and threats will get you banned instantly,” XoAriel said.
Some ban appeals are just created to continue trolling. XoAriel said that she’s “stopped looking at ban appeals because they’re not really funny anymore.” It’s a lot of the same she said, like “You’re a stupid slut” or “Sorry my brother got on my computer, won’t happen again.”
Continuing to be toxic is not a good way to get unbanned. There are very few streamers that are going to fall victim to a neg and reinstate a viewer with a track record of harassment. Not only is it cringe, it can also cause them to have their channels punished for lack of chat moderation.
This viewer wanted to experience something new, it seems. Older messages revealed the viewer kept begging mods to ban them, to no avail. It was only until the viewer crassly complimented Pokimane’s bosom that they finally got their wish.
Despite this, however, the viewer sent in an unban request! The message not only pleaded to be let back in, they also asked Poki to not include his replies in a video compilation because they were afraid of being called a simp by their friends. Welp.
Kaitlyn “Amouranth” Siragusa, known for her NSFW content, deals with a lot of young, inappropriate viewers who ultimately get banned for the rude things they type.
“I’m trying to give you the big SHMEAT better than your hubby,” wrote one aggressive viewer in 2019. In 2022, he appealed with “I’m sorry :(.” Siragusa unbanned, adding the comment “reformed?” She recently promoted an AI Chatbot service that she hoped would “put trolls in their place.” The service provides fans of Amouranth with the chance to talk to an AI version of her. “How it works is a user leaves a voice message and the [artificial intelligence] program will take that voice message, turn it into text internally, formulate a response in text, and then what it sends back to the user is a voice message with a voice that is replicated by my Twitch streams and my YouTube videos to try and sound like me and it’ll answer in a way that I would also respond,” Amouranth told Kotaku. “It says [almost]exactly what I’m thinking, so it’s pretty good.”
Siragusa recently signed a deal with rival streaming platform Kick.
In their defense, the viewer said, they were drinking along with Ludwig during a stream. So if they said something untoward, surely Ludwig would understand where they were coming from, right?
This one will undoubtedly be controversial. The viewer’s chatlog showed them spamming in all caps lock, basically screaming at xQc to stop promoting gambling to kids via his stream. The message wasn’t at all apologetic: it simply reiterated that anyone reading the appeal should stop working for “someone who promotes gambling, an addiction that causes the highest amount of suicide than any other addiction, to children,” they claimed.
xQc is of course now partnered with Kick, a website owned by gambling site Stake.com
Usually, when someone types profanity into the chat, there’s no excusing it. They messed up and probably have to apologize. In this rare instance, though, the viewer says that while they did say “blow me” in Pokimane’s chat, it wasn’t them being shitty at all. Instead, they were simply pointing out how much something she said sounded like those words.
When Pokimane went back and looked at the footage, she ended up agreeing with the viewer.
When streamers become judges, wielding virtual ban gavels as they determine the fate of a viewer who is just begging to be allowed to type Pepe emotes in a chat with other meme lords, it creates content with stakes. And then chat can vote on if they stay banned or not. There are a near-infinite amount of reasons a viewer can ask to get unbanned, from the absolute mundane to the outright creepy.
Banning is a powerful tool that needs to be wielded correctly. A ban appeal gives streamers the power to invite a repentant fan back into their chat and it gives viewers a second chance. Even if the ban is upheld, those banished can at least get some closure with a reason why they were punished. It’s a system entirely unique to Twitch and one of the reasons the platform has remained so relevant.
And when you appeal to your favorite streamer, remember that “my brother did it” is not a good excuse.