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A Note from Emmett about the Safety Advisory Council

May 19 2020

Last week, we announced the formation of our Safety Advisory Council, a group of online safety experts and Twitch creators we brought together to advise on issues related to trust and safety at Twitch. We’ve since seen a lot of discussion and questions, as well as some concerns, and I want to provide some clarity to help everyone understand our thinking about the council’s role and what we’re doing next.

The role of the council is to advise, offer perspective, and participate in discussions with our internal teams pertaining to the work we do to help keep our community safe and healthy. We made an intentional choice to recruit advisors with strong independent opinions and the courage to challenge our thinking. Our goal is to hear a wide range of points of view informed by truly different people within Twitch and outside Twitch. Because a position on the council is not a test of ideology or an endorsement by Twitch on a specific viewpoint, we expect that members of the council will sometimes have very different viewpoints from each other, from Twitch staff members, or from the official Twitch policy. We recognize that hearing from a diverse set of voices is valuable when crafting products and policies to serve our entire community.

We said in our blog post we were looking for the council to advise on a variety of things, from advising on new policies to promoting healthy streaming habits, but we could have been clearer about tasks the council will not be involved with. Council members will not make moderation decisions, nor will they have access to any details on specific moderation cases. They are not Twitch employees, and they do not speak on Twitch’s behalf. While we value their opinions and their right to share them, they are independent actors who will have opinions that aren’t shared either by Twitch, Twitch employees, or even by other members of the council. Nevertheless, we believe that having diverse viewpoints will make the council and its recommendations stronger, and ultimately better for our community.

All participants care deeply about the Twitch Community and want to help make it a better place. It’s a commitment of time and energy from them, and we’re grateful for their contribution to help us improve Twitch policy. Harassment directed at council members or anyone at or on Twitch only underscores the importance of the council. We do not condone bullying or harassment of any kind and will continue to take action against accounts who engage in that behavior.

At the heart of the Safety Advisory Council and all of our work at Twitch is the desire to foster a safe, inclusive, and creative community of passionate people. As with every community, there will be disagreements and differing points of view, and we are committed to considering a diversity of perspectives as we work to help keep our community safe and healthy.

- Emmett 

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