Twitch fights view-inflating bot makers with lawsuit

The lawsuit is part of an effort by the livestreaming site to prevent video creators from gaming the system and artificially inflating their view counts.

Twitch has just about had it with bots that artificially inflate view counts for videos. In fact, it’s taking the makers of such bots to court.

In a post published to the Twitch Blog on Friday, Matthew DiPietro, Twitch’s senior vice president of marketing, explained how the company is working to combat fraudulent view counts. In addition to the current steps Twitch takes—such as human moderation and technical measures to combat view-count inflation—the company announced that it would sue “seven of the most active sellers” of video view-inflating bots.

In Twitch’s formal complaint (PDF), which it filed with the United States District Court in San Jose, the company describes the bot services as “illicit and illegal,” and states that, “these deceptive actions inflate viewer statistics for some channels while harming legitimate broadcaster channels by decreasing their discoverability.”

“That, in turn, hurts the quality of the experience community members have come to expect from Twitch,” the claim continues.

Twitch’s filing also explains how gaming the system with bots harms other streamers who use the service legitimately, and “make it harder for Twitch users to discover legitimate broadcasters and for those broadcasters to succeed.”

The story behind the story: Although it may not seem like a big deal to viewers, view-count inflation is a big issue for streamers and video producers, especially given how it can impact a streamer’s bottom line. It isn’t new to Twitch, and it isn’t exclusive to Twitch.

Other sites, such as YouTube, also employ tactics to cut down on view-count inflation. In YouTube’s case, if a video surpassed 301 views, that video’s page would temporarily stop updating the view count so that YouTube could filter out “dubious” views, according to Business Insider. YouTube has since updated its filtering system so that it will filter out suspicious views on the fly, as The Verge reported last year.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Twitch

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Nick Mediati

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?