In 2022, the top streaming platform, Twitch, put in place a policy update that was a targeted effort, aimed at banning unlicensed gambling streams on the platform. It was a change that came at the height of a gambling-focused controversy, with countless top-tier streamers and creators actively broadcasting long gambling sessions to their viewers. In the weeks that followed, some gambling creators began looking for an alternative, and it seems that their saviour has arrived in the form of Kick.com.
Since December of last year, some prominent streamers – most notably Tyler ‘Trainwrecks’ Niknam – have pivoted to using Kick.com for their broadcasts. Originally, Trainwrecks – an avid supporter of gambling content – announced his intention to launch his own streaming platform, but instead, he stepped in to support Kick.com as an advisor.
Now, Kick.com, which is backed by an instantly-recognisable crypto gambling site, is screaming up the charts, and more influencers and creators are getting on board. But is it the next hottest thing in the gambling space?
Will Kick Change the Face of Gambling Streams?
For some, gambling streams were a game changer, but for others, they were a crushing life lesson. Last year, one of the most popular streamers on Twitch, xQc, began getting heavily involved with gambling streams, often wagering hundreds of thousands of dollars across a single session, live on stream. It was a worrying message for some, and the morality of the thing came into play, especially as xQc’s audience consists mostly of young people.
Therefore, to answer the concerns wrapped around the Twitch betting scandal, the platform issued a change that brought a cage crashing down around gambling streams – and streamers.
Within weeks, those that had rebelled immediately against Twitch’s decision began looking for an alternative platform. They couldn’t broadcast their gambling content on YouTube for similar reasons, but Kick.com surfaced as an all-new fledgling competitor to the titan platforms, and thanks to the backing of some big names, it began growing extremely fast.
Kick is backed by Stake.com, one of the leading sites for cryptocurrency casinos and crypto-backed betting markets. Coincidentally, Stake.com is one of the top platforms specifically named by Twitch in the update that banned gambling streams. There are many who claim that Kick.com is a suspicious platform, but in what capacity, it’s yet to be confirmed.
If there’s one thing that’s for sure, it’s that Twitch’s shutdown of most gambling streams has opened the door for Kick to grow at an alarming rate.
Why Has Kick Grown So Fast?
It’s growing fast, but it’s being driven by some questionable characters. Most recently, scandalous streamer, Adin Ross, pivoted to Kick.com following a permanent ban from Twitch. In one of his first streams, he broadcasted the Super Bowl, pulling in more than 100,000 viewers by doing something that would have been a clear breach of the terms of service on Twitch. It seems that Kick.com is growing rapidly not just because of its lenience with gambling streamers, but because it’s so controversial.
In February 2023, another Kick streamer was banned for one day for performing a sexual act during a live stream. Following the incident, that particular streamer grew at a rapid pace on the platform. As the site grows in footfall, its top creators are urging more streamers to use the platform, as there are key benefits being touted by the site – such as the claim that the platform boasts a 95% revenue split for streamers.
So, not only can these creators continue to play crypto slots on stream without being banned, but they can make more money doing so than if they were using Twitch.
It’s worth stressing that Kick.com does have rigorous Terms of Service, but it seems that it just isn’t enforced as strictly as Twitch’s ToS is.
Is This The Future?
There’s no doubt that gambling content has an extremely strong pull. With the rise of the popularity of gambling in general, people have found a passion in watching wealthy creators wager thousands of dollars on slots, casino games, and sports betting – or esports betting – markets. There’s something exhilarating in watching someone else chase the win – it’s anticipation by proxy, and it’s why Kick.com, with its relaxed rules on gambling streams, is set to grow immeasurably.
Of course, a platform that’s built on controversy and made up almost exclusively of members moving over from another platform as a means of escape isn’t a secure one – at least, not for the time being. In terms of comparison, Kick.com’s numbers can’t even begin to rival those of Twitch and YouTube just yet, but should the exodus continue, they may do in the near future.
It’s safe to say that, given the scope of the scene at present, Kick.com certainly could be the future home for all gambling streamers.