Twitch is introducing 350+ new community tags that will enable streamers not just to tag the content of the games they’re playing, but also “who they are and what they [stand] for”, too.
“We had planned to share this next week, but we’ve heard a lot of you talking and want to make sure the record is clear. Next week we’ll be adding 350+ new tags to celebrate yourself and your community,” explained a tweet on the official Twitch Twitter account over the weekend.
The new tags – which were drawn up in consultation with “independent, third-party organisations” and “other experts focused on the progress of underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, LGBTQIA+, disabled, and marginalized communities” – are “related to gender, sexual orientation, race, nationality, ability, mental health, and more”.
“The list of tags include transgender, Black, disabled, veteran, and Vtuber, among many others,” a post on the official website explains. “We will also remove references to “ally” from the LGBTQIA+ tag, and are instead creating a standalone ally tag. These additions won’t change how tagging works and are completely optional. They simply give creators more choices.”
The post also acknowledges that prior effects to inhibit streamers from tagging “what they stood for” instead of “what they were streaming” was “wrong”.
“When we launched tags in 2018, we did so to boost discovery, to help creators describe their content and to help viewers find streams they’re interested in. We intentionally designed that system for creators to be able to describe what they were streaming, not who they were or what they stood for. We have maintained this distinction since that time, and we were wrong.”
The news comes on the heels of confirmation that Twitch has launched a new Pools, Hot Tubs, and Beaches category in response to “community and advertiser feedback”.
As Wes explained yesterday, the announcement came after a controversial week for Twitch and its “hot tub meta”, with some streamers complaining that advertising had been suspended from their channels without warning or explanation.
Twitch said its new Pools, Hot Tubs, and Beaches category is not its long-term solution to “improve brand targeting capabilities”, but solves a few issues in the short-term. Crucially, advertisers will be able to either opt-in or opt-out of the category, which from Twitch’s point of view will probably keep the brands at bay for a while at least.