In June 2020, ItsSlikeR signed a contract with one of the most famous esports organizations, Team Liquid. The English streamer has 430,000 Twitch followers and a wide interest profile. Most often, he communicates with the audience in the "Just Chatting" section, where he discusses current topics, and sometimes plays different games, such as Among Us.
Less than a year later, in April 2021, Team Liquid announced they were ending their partnership. In a farewell tweet, they did not name the reasons for the breakup, only thanked ItsSlikeR for his cooperation and wished him all the best. Fans speculated that the reason was that ItsSlikeR had stopped streaming.
“My family and I are now going through a difficult period,” he wrote a couple of days before the official termination of the contract, “so I completely lost motivation. I apologize to the viewers, but for now I myself do not know when I will return to the streams. I'll definitely let you know.
Gradually, his life returned to normal, and he quickly returned to regular streaming with an audience of 500 to 1,000 people. It is curious that the other day, when information about debts surfaced, his popularity increased dramatically.
Data for the last 3 months:
The first reports of ItsSlikeR's debts appeared in mid-September. As is often the case in such situations, the amounts began to snowball. As a result, it turned out that he owed a total of around $300,000.
On September 17, user Mikelpee posted a video in which ItsSliker asks him for money.
– I'm very embarrassed. 4 days ago they closed my bank account, and tomorrow is the last day for paying interest on the loan. I would be immensely grateful if you could lend me some money. I promise to return everything within a couple of months. I understand if you refuse, just please do not tell anyone about this. I'm so incredibly ashamed. I reached out to other streamers and even subscribers, but they couldn't help me.
This clip immediately hit the top of Reddit in the LivestreamFail section.
Screenshots were posted in the comments of how ItsSliker begs for money in the discord. One of the members regularly transferred small sums to him during the year and in total he lent about $8500.
After that, ItsSliker went on the air and admitted that he invented everything about the closed bank account and loans, and lost money on sports betting.
– I lost a lot of money – everything that I earned on twitch. Then he started borrowing from other streamers. Naturally, I did not want to say that I need money for gambling. I had to lie. I never had any thoughts of scamming people, and I promise to pay everyone back.
ItsSliker was not always asking for small amounts, at times he was in big.
Streamer Lukeafk admitted that he transferred $27,000 to him.
And Trainwrecks lent a whopping $100k within a month.
“Gambling is to blame,” ItsSliker said in his latest stream, followed by 10,000 people. This shit is very dangerous. I became a typical gambling addict, began to lie to the audience. He said on streams that he left gambling in the distant past. This is also a lie. All this time I kept betting. I will seek professional help soon.
Among popular streamers, this story caused a wave of calls to ban any form of gambling on Twitch.
“xQc and I are working to pay off everyone who was scammed by the sliker,” wrote Ludwig . “It’s time for Twitch to do something about gambling streams.
– We are aware of the situation with Sliker, – xQc supported him. “Ludwig and I will do everything possible to return the victims their money. It will take some time, the amount of his debts is ~$300,000.🤝
As a reminder, both Ludwig and xQc were part of a big game at the Hustler casino with Phil Hellmuth and Tom Dwan.
xQc once advertised a popular crypto casino on his streams. Six months ago, in a Pokimane podcast, he admitted that he himself was experiencing problems with gambling addiction.
It's fun and I can afford it.
– Would you get the same pleasure if you played outside the streams?
Of course, I have an addiction. This month alone, I lost $1.85 million at an online casino.
– God. Guys, never play in the casino!
– But now I have refused sponsorship contracts with casinos. I get addicted too easily, so I just can't play. But I still continue. Is it good? No, it's terrible. It's sick, but I can afford it. In this I was lucky.
In 2021, after a data leak on earnings on Twitch, it became known that xQc was in second place in the list of the highest paid streamers. From August 2019 to October 2021, he received $8,454,427. These are payments only from the twitch itself, excluding sponsorship contracts, donations and other additional earnings.
Streamer Pokimane has long been calling for tougher anti-gambling policies on Twitch, and she has not stood aside even now.
“Like if you think twitch should ban gambling,” she tweeted and got 300,000 likes.
Many poker players have expressed their fear that no one will understand the intricacies of the issue, and poker will also be banned if it comes to drastic measures. We talked about the reaction of some poker streamers to this tweet in telegram.
Jaime Staples tried to reach out to a wide audience and recorded a video to explain how poker is different from other forms of gambling.
And for anyone that may not know about gambling and the difference between poker and everything else in a casino, here is a simple explanation as to why it is different: https://t.co/hKPuOFcwjS pic.twitter.com/ZFxBc54l3k— Jaime Staples (@jaimestaples) September 19, 2022
– ''We play poker with each other, our opponent is another player, not a computer or a dealer. Poker rooms make money from rake, which can be compared to rent. Professional players are those who earn more on the course than they lose on the rake. There are very few such players, it is incredibly difficult to become successful in poker. But amateurs can also enjoy the game. It's like golf, most players don't come to the course to make money. They are attracted by competition with rivals, the opportunity to unravel their plan and succeed thanks to their own mind. Poker has nothing to do with slots, where you play against a pre-configured algorithm with payouts of 97-98% and huge variance.''
Trainwrecks streamer, who was scammed out of $100,000 by ItsSlikeR, also for a reasonable approach to solving the problem:
– ''I want to make it clear. Everyone pounced on slots, blackjack and roulette, although a specific person is to blame for this situation. The real problem is in it. Sliker is obsessed with sports betting – almost the only form of gambling that society recognizes as normal. I haven't heard any of you powerful fucking goblins talk about it.
But I agree that streamers and viewers who sell fake reality should be banned. People who continue to give away promo codes for gambling deserve a ban too. Streamers should also go there, showing only their winnings and hiding their losses.''
“You can’t just ban all gambling content,” Kevin Martin is sure . – ''Streamers should be honest about the realities of gambling. But you can't erase an entire area of content just because some guy has a serious illness.
The difference between poker and gambling is a separate issue. Definitely need to protect against gambling minors. And adults need to be educated and taught to work with sources, after that they themselves must make decisions. A ban on the platform is not a solution to the problem.''
Fintan "EasyWithAces" Hand hopes poker won't be banned:
I didn't really follow this gambling ban drama on twitch. There are many such calls now, but I would like to believe that poker will not be touched by this wave. We are still from a different category, there is too much difference with slots. Poker is a game of skill. But 99% of people should still perceive it only as entertainment. I keep repeating this. Treat the game like going to the movies. You pay $20 and you will most likely lose. Poker is a great game, but not when you're playing with money you can't afford to lose.
I'm not at all familiar with slot streamers. Do they claim that they are playing in the plus at a distance? If so, then I understand the calls for a ban. One more question – do they play with their own money or at least with real money? I doubt. This is another problem. What I think is completely out of the question is if they receive a percentage of the losses of their viewers.
But where is the line?
Any game with loot boxes is gambling. When you open cards in FIFA, it's gambling. Loot boxes in Counterstrike are gambling. Cards in Pokemon are gambling. These games don't even have an age limit. Because of what children and their parents suffer. For me, this is no better than slots.
Ideally, Twitch should be better at keeping track of age restrictions. Do not limit yourself to this pathetic 18+ inscription in the title. It is also necessary to explain more clearly what gambling is. I wish streamers didn't see their audience as cash cows. Also, the platform must fight against illegal sites and their advertising.
If none of this happens, I at least hope that my favorite game will stop being lumped together with cheap money making. Poker is the best game of all time, it's variance chess. You can be at the table with the best players in the world, and you will have chances to win, however small. Poker is great. I hope to continue streaming it for many more years.