About a fortnight ago, we reported that Guy Beahm, better known as the popular livestreamer Dr Disrespect, had resolved its long-running dispute with Twitch. He was permanently suspended for unknown reasons in June 2020, before release legal action about the ban; unfortunately, the resolution gave no idea why it was imposed.
“Resolved my legal dispute with Twitch,” Disrespect said in a message posted to Twitter. “Neither party admits any wrongdoing.”
“Moving on” was clearly doing a lot of heavy lifting there, and for both sides, because now Twitch has suspended Chess Grandmaster and five-time US Champion Hikaru Nakamura for watching Dr Disrespect play chess. On March 16, Nakamura streamed himself, on Twitch, watching Dr Disrespect play against another streamer, Dr Lupo.
Next week’s Grand Prix is going to be fascinating, but even more interesting is @DrDisrespect vs @DrLupo – we have two streaming PhDs here doing this. Tune in! https://t.co/1IAaMM5tcJ pic.twitter.com/TG9BYbkYagMarch 16, 2022
At the time, Nakamura’s viewers immediately alerted him to the possibility of suspension. Despite the agreement, Dr Disrespect remains banned from Twitch and, per the site’s community guidelines, is also not allowed to stream with others on Twitch.
“Calm down you guys, you think I care” Nakamura said at the time, “this is chess.”
It might have been chess, but it was also a pretty clear violation of Twitch policy. Nakamura may have genuinely believed that being the game of kings made everything okay, but he’s also probably the most popular chess streamer and someone with a mischievous streak. He likes to poke the bear.
And in this case, he received a small slip:
Doc tweeted that things get resolved with twitch… I think he was wrong. See all in 3 days.March 22, 2022
It’s a little crazy that a Chess Grandmaster was suspended by Twitch for streaming Dr Disrespect playing chess, but this is the world we live in, and from a streaming platform perspective, it’s as simple a case as it gets. Nakamura’s own profile is probably a help with this: Twitch wants streamers to know not to play around and try to stream Dr Disrespect in cute ways, or their very status will be threatened.
Nakamura has a habit of making chess videos more accessible than your typical chess streamer, and during the broadcast he offers quite kind words about Dr. Disrespect It turns out that the most ruthless competitor in video game history is terrible at chess.
We still have no idea what caused Dr. Disrespect, and possibly we never will. The mega-popular streamer won’t be returning to the platform — and clearly won’t even be allowed anywhere near it. The conclusion of this saga, if indeed it is over, could only be called an anticlimax.
Dr Disrespect is doing great in YouTube of course, where he has 3.82 million subscribers and has his own game development studio: midnight society. Unfortunately the main product is selling NFT beta access to a game that doesn’t yet exist.