Twitch announced recently that it was banning the popular PogChamp emote. The move came after the person associated with the emote published tweets encouraging further violence in the wake of the violent riots at the US Capitol earlier this month.
The video game streaming platform noted in a statement that while the PogChamp emote had become an integral part of its community, the company couldn’t in good conscience continue to enable its use.
The PogChamp emote is one of the oldest on Twitch. It’s often used as a show of excitement by viewers and has in recent years become integral in the gaming culture online. But it seems this is the last time we are going to see it.
The PogChamp emote features the face of professional “Street Fighter” player Ryan “Gootecks” Gutiérrez. Mr. Gutiérrez is accused of publishing tweets that appeared to encourage more violence in the US Capitol after a pro-Trump mob forced their way into the Congress. Five people were killed in the fracas including a police officer who was hit in the head with a fire extinguisher.
Twitch noted that it intends to replace the PogChamp emote, saying that it will work with the gaming community on its platform to find a more suitable replacement. Twitch is the latest tech company to take action against incitement to violence.
After the riots at the Capitol, more tech companies moved to remove accounts related to conspiracy theories about the election. Twitter went as far as permanently removing President Trump from its platform. Facebook then followed suit, noting that it had decided to block Trump from posting on its platforms for at least two weeks.
The president was largely accused of fueling the violence that rocked the Capitol on Wednesday. Trump and his allies were hoping to pressure Congress to overturn the election of Joe Biden, something that ultimately failed. But the fallout after the riots seems to be huge. Some GOP members have moved to distance themselves from the president and some are even considering a motion of impeachment brought forward by Congressional Democrats.
The president released a statement after the riots denouncing the acts of his supporters adding that all those involved in storming the Capitol will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Trump, however, hasn’t acknowledged he lost the election and continues to hold on to frail conspiracy theories that the November vote was stolen from him.
But the president and his team have failed to present any substantial evidence to support these claims. Over 50 lawsuits filed by the Trump campaign challenging the outcome of the poll have been dismissed by US Federal judges and two by the Supreme Court.