Right on the heels of announcing a very poorly received pay cut for creators on their platform, Twitch hosted Twitchcon 2022, an event loaded with controversy.
When a massive event is superseded by the hosting company cutting its creators’ pay — a round-up of this info has been provided by Joe Findlay’s ‘Dear Content Creators‘ — and then consciously making the choice to hire a renowned artist like Megan Thee Stallion to headline a three-day event, its safe to say tensions were high. But Twitchcon 2022, San Diego, is in the headlines for all of the wrong reasons, not including this one.
The major incident circulating the incident is unsafe practices surrounding a foam pit that saw Twitch streamers like Hasan Piker and xQc have a skirmish with foam swords above what initially seemed to be safe conditions. This was immediately debunked when another popular Twitch streamer, Adriana Chechik, jumped into the very same foam pit and suffered severe injuries from the fall. A video (CAUTION GRAPHIC) can be found showing the injury from fellow attendee Twitter Jake Lucky, and her confirmation can be found on Twitter.
Chechik wasn’t the only attendee who suffered injuries from the foam pit, as another Twitch streamer LochVaness also went to Twitter to confirm injuries from the Lenovo Legion pit with “I will never be able to trust @Twitch at another convention in my entire life. Here’s how I dislocated my knee and sprained my ankle at their Lenovo Legion booth,” while also posting a video of the injury sustained at Twitchcon 2022. Reporter Nathan Grayson said they spoke to a member of staff regarding the exhibit, and the staff said:
-not twitch’s. booth is a collaboration between intel and lenovo
-the foam pit is now closed. they shut it down at noon bc people were breaking rules (and bones)
-people had to sign a waiver acknowledging the possibility of physical harm or damage to, say, phones (and also that they were ok with appearing on stream)
-unclear whether intel/lenovo will foot the bill of the people who’ve been injured (seen reports that there’s more than one)
-rules regularly broken included people hitting each other in the face
-to me, looks like there’s more foam in some places than others, but shallow overall– Nathan Grayson, Twitter
These tweets from Grayson seem to suggest Twitchcon 2022 deflecting blame to Lenovo and Intel for the injuries, but this wasn’t the only controversy at the event. There have also been reports of other issues, such as security problems, as Twitter @astraharaa posted a thread outlining many of the issues attendees have seen over the weekend.
Among the chief Twitchcon 2022 complaints, the thread outlines poor security and mistreatment or inaccessibility for disabled congoers. Further down the list are complaints of predatory behaviour, unsafe overcrowding, a notice of positive COVID-19 test results, misgendering attendees by event coordinators and sexual harassment. Popular Twitch streamer xQc outlined some of the behaviour he experienced during a stream following Twitchcon 2022, as dotesports reports ” Even after numerous attempts to tell the woman he was “taken,” and ask her to stop touching him, the woman continued to try and make advances on him, according to xQc.”
With all of the negative reports surrounding Twitchcon 2022, Twitch has yet to address any of it, as does Lenovo or Intel. Fans can stay queued into their Blog page for updates on their response to the event.