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Home Science Twitch Suspends Leafy, The Banned YouTuber Who Harassed Pokimane - Kotaku

Twitch Suspends Leafy, The Banned YouTuber Who Harassed Pokimane – Kotaku

Illustration for article titled Twitch Suspends Leafy, The Banned YouTuber Who Harassed Pokimane

Photo: LeafyIsHere

LeafyIsHere is a creator known primarily for picking on other creators. Last month, he was permanently banned from YouTube for repeatedly violating the company’s harassment policies after a series of videos about Twitch star Imane “Pokimane” Anys—one of which kicked off a hashtag campaign around the existence of her supposed, secret boyfriend—as well as a feud with YouTuber Ethan “H3H3” Klein. Now he’s been booted off Twitch as well.

Today, Leafy’s Twitch account, which he began using frequently shortly after he got banned from YouTube on August 24, stopped showing up on the platform. Its URL now returns Twitch’s trademark error message: “Sorry. Unless you’ve got a time machine, that content is unavailable.” Esports consultant and journalist Rod “Slasher” Breslau claimed on Twitter that the ban is permanent.

Per its standard policy, Twitch would not confirm or deny whether Leafy’s account is done for, but it did issue a statement.

“The safety of our community is our top priority, and we reserve the right to suspend any account for conduct that violates our rules, or that we determine to be inappropriate, harmful, or puts our community at risk,” a Twitch representative told Kotaku in an email.

Earlier today, Leafy claimed to have received a strike against his account from Twitch. He posted an image of an email that he said was from Twitch, which stated that he had engaged in “hateful conduct and threats of violence against a person or group of people.” Twitch did not specify what he’d gotten in trouble for beyond that, however.

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When Leafy first began streaming on Twitch in the wake of his YouTube ban three weeks ago, many streamers were not pleased. Satirical streamer Kaceytron, for example, wondered on multiple occasions why Leafy was allowed to have an account in light of his previous actions on other platforms (Twitch has rules against “hateful conduct or harassment that occurs off Twitch services that is directed at Twitch users”) and more recent statements. One of those statements, shared on Twitter by Klein, featured Leafy saying to generally reprehensible YouTube drama monger Daniel “Keemstar” Keem that he’d shown up to a recent protest with a gun “underneath my jacket” and that he wants “one day in my life for someone to give me an excuse to shoot them.” After a pause and awkward laughter from Keem, Leafy followed this up by saying that it was “a joke, bro, kind of.”

Kaceytron’s objection to his statement is especially relevant considering that, earlier this year, she made a joke about giving old people coronavirus and got temporarily suspended from Twitch in the immediate aftermath. There was no indication that Twitch planned to in any way remove Leafy from the platform until today, however. On August 27, Kotaku reached out to Twitch about Leafy’s history and comments, and the company provided the exact same statement it sent out today, but did not take any public action against Leafy. Conspicuously, however, Leafy’s channel would not appear in Twitch’s search results at the time, something many users noticed and Kotaku verified. One source close to Twitch who chose to remain anonymous told Kotaku that Twitch used to frequently “shadowban” risky channels by doing this, though it appears to utilize this tactic less frequently these days. The next week, Leafy’s channel began showing up in Twitch’s search results again.

Now his account has actually been banned—at least, for the time being. Kotaku reached out to Leafy for comment, but as of this publishing, he did not reply.

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