Live-streaming platform Twitch has reported its service has been banned in China. This included the removal of the app from the nations app store and the disabling of the website, which rendered it completely inaccessible to most of the country's residents.
This marks another in a list of large internet companies banned by China's government censors. Other banned sites include Twitter, Reddit, Facebook and YouTube. Google has also been banned in the nation which recently led them to start development of a censor-friendly search engine, Project Dragonfly which has faced staunch criticism for enabling human rights violations.
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Despite Twitch's popularity in the West, due to slow service in the region it had yet to fully take off in China. However, recently the company had shot up the rankings to become the country's third most popular app. This was largely attributed to its coverage of the Asian Games e-sports tournament which, despite a good performance by Chinese gamers, was not broadcast on state-run TV stations.
China has a history of banning western sites once they gain popularity in the country, especially those with the potential to give individuals using the platforms the ability to voice views censors find troublesome to a large audience instantaneously. This is what reportedly happened on live streams at the e-sports event.
Other than confirming the ban, Twitch has declined to comment further.