Chinese government has been cracking down on video games lately, noting that their addiction has reached dangerous levels. And now, as part of that regulation, it looks like the popular streaming website Twitch has been blocked as well.
This report from GamesIndustry International, based on details from Abacus News, indicates that the website has become inaccessible for a number of users throughout China. On top of that, the app that ties in with the website through the App Store has been removed as well, so users can no longer download it.
During the Asian Games last month, Twitch saw a huge surge in Chinese traffic, and managed to reach the number three spot on the free app charts at the time. This enabled fans to watch competitions that couldn’t be seen through other channels.
This is the latest move by the Chinese government to regulate gaming content in their country. YouTube actually can’t be accessed at all, as it’s been blocked in its entirety. As for Steam, it appears to still be available, although Valve had to modify its site a certain way in order to get it approved by censors that work for the government.
As for game development, it’s still gone through a temporary halt per government orders, and no new date has been given on when it will start again.
We’re not sure what prompted the Chinese government to make all these moves, but part of it might be due to the violent nature of some of the games that are popular in the market, as well as the numerous deaths of people that spend hours on end in gaming cafes without getting any food or sleep.
It’s unknown whether the Twitch ban is temporary until the network is reconfigured, or permanent, but the Twitch team did acknowledge the channel is in fact blocked, with no further statement past that.
For now, it doesn’t appear that there’s a viable solution in place for those that want to watch their favorite Twitch programming, unless you previously downloaded the app. And even then, with the website blocked, we’re not sure if you can access any services.