China puts block on Twitch game-streaming service

Twitch's app is no longer available in China.                  Nicole Cozma  CNET

Twitch's app is no longer available in China. Nicole Cozma CNET

As CNN points out, Twitch was quite popular in China before its ban, thanks in part to its recent coverage of the Asian Games, which were not televised by the country's state media. Twitch did carry the eSports portion, and its iOS app reportedly climbed over 300 places in China's App Store to become the third most-downloaded free app. Details are still pretty slim at the moment, with Twitch confirming to Abacus that it has been banned but failing to elaborate on the situation. Many users have been reporting about whether they can or cannot connect to Twitch's website in their respective province.

China has a history of banning western sites once they gain popularity in the country, especially those with the potential to give individuals using the platforms the ability to voice views censors find troublesome to a large audience instantaneously. According to the Hong Kong website Abacus, Chinese fans were annoyed that state-run TV wasn't covering the event and thus turned to Twitch in droves.

The surge in popularity occurred during the 2018 Asian Games esports event. The Chinese government so far has not issued any official statement.

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Twitch's app is no longer available in China.

The Chinese government has clamped down on Twitch in a surprising move that has Chinese gamers upset. Services that have been blocked for a period of time are include Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook. Google and its services have been absent from the country for nearly a decade, but the company is reportedly working with authorities on a heavily restricted, custom censored search engine codenamed Project Dragonfly-a plan that has reportedly seen a senior researcher from the company quit in protest.

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