The United States Army is coming back to Twitch. The community was spamming messages in their chat and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tried to pass a measure to prohibit the military from recruiting on the platform. After public pressure built, the Army and Navy decided to lay low for a while. Now, Kotaku reports that the military is headed back to the platform. Some users reported that they were led through giveaway processes that led them to pages advocating for them to sign up to enlist. The Army emailed Kotaku to give out an official statement on the decision. However, it would seem that users probably won’t give up on their griefing anytime soon as a lot of them perceived the esports channel to be an overreach by the Army.
“The U.S. Army Esports Team is reinstating access for accounts previously banned for harassing and degrading behavior on its Twitch stream,” reads the statement. “The team is reviewing and clarifying its policies and procedures for the stream and will provide all who have been banned the opportunity to participate in the space as long as they follow the team’s guidelines.”
In talking about her move to help remove the Army from the platform, AOC took to Twitter to put her thought processes in front of her followers.
“When our legislative bodies aren’t sufficiently responsive to tech, then that means we don’t have the tools required to protect people,” AOC wrote on Twitter. “This is partially why companies know way more about you than you may even be aware of - bc it’s legal, and Congress is struggling to keep up. The good news: a majority of the Dem party supported this amendment. That’s a really solid start for this being the first time this issue has been brought before Congress. We’ve made great strides since *that* Senate FB hearing, but we’ve got a lot of room to still improve!”
Katie Fallow, a senior staff attorney at the Knight First Amendment Institute issued a press release about the Army’s practice of banning people for speaking up on Twitch when all of this fervor began.
“Once the government opens up a space for expressive activity to the public at large, the First Amendment prohibits it from excluding speakers from that space on the basis of viewpoint,” Fallow said. “The Army and Navy can’t constitutionally delete comments or ban people from these Twitch channels simply for asking questions about issues they would rather not address.”
Did you see the Army’s channel interactions on social media? Let us know down in the comments!