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Some countries are banning Kick, here’s where and why

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Turkey has banned the streaming platform Kick, further disrupting the streaming scene in the country further and adding another country to what is becoming a list of places that have banned the platform.

Kick has been a steady source of controversy since its inception. In addition to the usual roundup of silly streamer nonsense, the platform continues to bring aboard controversial figures. The active courting of banned Twitch streamers has made it an attractive landing spot for a number of toxic fandoms.

But it’s the site’s association with online gambling that is central to it getting banned in multiple countries. Streamers like Adin Ross have admittedly lost millions on gambling with much of that taking place on-air. Streamers have also openly discussed or alluded to an on-air gambling requirement as being part of their contract. This has gotten the site banned in multiple countries, which claim the site is a funnel for betting sites.

Why did Turkey ban Kick?

Turkey reportedly blocked access to Kick due to its negative effect on the youth.

According to a report by Ibrahim Haskoloğlu, Turkish officials stated the primary reason for Kick’s ban was its close ties to gambling. The officials claim that Kick was “attracting Turkish youth to roulette.” The Turkish government is not historically accepting of gambling, having banned casinos entirely in 1998 and non-state-sponsored gambling in 2006.  

Even so, that hasn’t stopped the growth of online gambling in the country. With Kick’s public ties to online gambling on top of its content creators openly doing the same, Turkey’s ban on the platform was all but inevitable. If one tries to access Kick.com from Turkey, a wall of text proclaiming gambling’s ties with terrorist organizations greets them.

With Kick gone, Twitch and YouTube have become the major streaming platforms for Turkish audiences. Unfortunately for users, Twitch significantly raised subscription prices for Turkey shortly before this move, which may push Turkish viewers toward YouTube to support their favorite creators.

While this is rough for viewers in Turkey, it’s also a burgeoning trend for Kick. The ban in Turkey comes less than a year after the site was banned in Greece. Like Turkey, Greece banned Kick due to its ties to unlicensed online gambling.

Notable streamers like Imane “Pokimane” Anys have also expressed disinterest in joining Kick over these gambling controversies. Pokimane claims she would never stream on Kick due to the platform’s ties to online crypto-gambling. Whether other countries will take a closer look at Kick after Turkey’s ban remains uncertain. 

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Written by Gab Hernandez

Gab Hernandez has a particular love for video games that give players control over the narrative direction, such as Divinity: Original Sin 2 and Disco Elysium. Gab spends just as much time playing games as they do gushing about them online to anyone who will listen. Their work has also been seen on TheGamer, Gfinity, and Wargamer, and you can follow them on Twitter / X at @HardlyWorkinGab.

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