It’s not uncommon to hear stories about spambots invading live streams, as Twitch has had an unfortunate case of it becoming all too uncommon. But now the situation has become so troublesome, that now some streamers are having trouble distinguishing the bots from actual followers.
Evan Gao has been active on Twitch for almost a whole year, initially sporting a total of six thousand followers. He had gained prominence on the site for wearing maid outfits, a now-signature style for his online persona, while also regularly streaming Minesweeper among other games. He also takes part in a podcast on his YouTube channel called S3K, which sports 4,410 subscribers at the time of writing. Unfortunately, he made a fatal mistake in trying to remove spambots from his page because, in an attempt to get rid of them, he deleted all of his followers from his page.
During one of his streams under Twitch’s Just Chatting category, while watching random YouTube videos, Gao noticed that the chat was overrun with spambots. Deciding to get rid of them, Gao utilized the Twitch Tools website to simply delete the bots from his account. However, Gao forgot to add the filters to select the bots properly, and instead had all six thousand of his follower selected instead. Subsequently, after accepting to delete the accounts, his entire follower count instantly dropped to zero.
It took a while before Gao was notified that his follower count had disappeared, with his co-host pointing out that many of them were trying to reach out about the situation, making him realize the error that he made. Not only that, but to prevent the bots from reappearing, Gao set a Twitch block filter, meaning few people could actually re-follow until he fixed the situation.
While it’s heartbreaking to see such unfortunate circumstances befall someone, at the very least it seems that Gao’s audience is taking it in stride, as the clip of the event was uploaded to Reddit’s r/LivestreamFail page, where it’s so far received 103,181 views. Gao, too, believes that the incident, and the popularity of the clip, should supply him with enough funny material for content.
Gao is now starting to rebuild his follower base, currently sitting at 6,300 thousand followers again. Hopefully, the situation has cautioned those seeking to get rid of the hate-raiding bots lurking in Twitch chats to take extra care in how they deal with the problem.