xQc is back in hot water (Source: xQc)
One of the top streamers in the world, xQc, has begun to gamble on his streams again, much to the ire of his fanbase.
Félix Lengyel, aka xQc, may be the fifth most followed streamer on Twitch but he’s drawn backlash from his fanbase after being called out for gambling on stream again, this time while sponsored by a gambling company.
Fans have begun to get aggravated over his return to gambling, after he admitted being addicted and losing $2 million in a month before giving up.
xQc is not a stranger to controversy, having been suspended from the Overwatch League for misconduct and ‘disparaging’ language. He was also temporarily banned from Twitch due to showing nudity and had to forfeit winnings made during the Twitch Rivals event for ‘stream sniping’ another player.
More recently, he entered the conversation surrounding the Heard v. Depp trial, as people begin to analyse the current streaming meta of reacting to the live broadcast for monetary gain.
Despite all this xQc has broken viewership records and continues to be one of the most followed users on the platform.
His gambling addiction came to light when he was on Pokimane’s streaming channel, where he admitted his problem. This even caused his father to reach out to scold him over the loss.
Fans have pointed out that xQc gambling for hours on end can lead to influencing his younger-skewing audience and as a result others have come forward with their own stories about how they lost everything.
xQc and his mod team have added ‘#ad’ to his stream title, but only did so as he switched to gambling and not when he went live. If users had been watching the stream without refreshing, it wouldn’t have appeared.
The issue seems to stem from xQc playing it off as if the chat asked for gambling when in actuality the other options were more favoured. It is also against the terms of service to have a sponsored stream that’s not advertised.
Fan response has gotten to the point that xQc has now railed against his audience, claiming that he isn’t a role model and shouldn’t be. This fails to take into consideration how an audience perceives someone they can spend up to six or eight hours watching through the day, every day.
In a video clip of his stream explaining things, he goes on a 40-minute rant about the situation, without ever coming to any real conclusion.
A further collection of messages from xQc on Discord follows a similar path:
xQc’s subreddit has turned into a minefield of memes, jokes, and messages disparaging him, while others have taken to unsubscribing to the channel in protest at the response.
A mixture of emotions currently surrounds the issue, with other streamers now speaking out. Ludwig, known for hosting poker streams, spoke about how he thinks that these types of sponsored streams should come to an end, while Pokimane has also stated that ending them would be a big help.
Meanwhile, other streamers like the recently banned Adin Ross and Trainwreck have signed seven-figure deals to promote xQc’s newest sponsor, Stake.
Stake is a fairly standard gambling website with access to slots, virtual football, and other sports betting. The difference is that it can use cryptocurrency in place of real cash, which with the recent boom (and current crash) has been quite profitable for the company.
They’re currently partnered with Drake, taking over his Instagram feed on a regular basis and the aforementioned Trainwreck earns over a million dollars a month with them as a flat fee.
Trainwreck is known for gambling massive amounts of money (even doing a multiple day long stream), with frequent messaging popping up encouraging viewers to not gamble. Whether this has any real effect or not is unknown, as Stake continues to spend more money on sponsorships every month.
Stake’s advertisement methods are something to keep an eye on in the future, as they will refer to a website called Hacksaw Gaming, which shows off replays of slot games that are successful.
Stake also partnered with the UFC and Watford FC as the official betting partner.
The issue with sponsored streams and gambling is that a lot of the time, the money being spent isn’t even the streamer’s, but money or a different money-free platform provided to them for use. This has lead to further criticism, as the massive wins are far out of reach for impressionable viewers.
Gambling is massive on Twitch, with an 11% increase over the last month for the slots category alone, which also ranks at number 10 out of all other categories on the platform.
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