Internet streaming company Twitch TV closes the gamer’s account following accusations.
Popular online game streamer zilianOP, Angel Hamilton, has been accused of faking his disability in order to rake in donations from well-meaning fans.
Having built a career around streaming his games live to the internet, the self-proclaimed wheelchair bound man shocked fans as he stood up from his chair mid-stream – presumably having thought the webcam was turned off.
Fans reacted furiously to what they saw as a cynical deception designed to encourage viewers to donate money, with some estimating that as much as $20,000 had been given this way.
A quickly assembled site, Diablowned, posted videos, pictures and criticism of the streamer, pointing out that his girlfriend, thought to be in on the act, immediately blurted: “Oh my God”.
Streaming service Twitch confirmed to Kotaku that it had shut down zilianOP’s account in response to fan criticisms and the recorded video clips.
“We have zero tolerance for this type of behavior and the character demonstrated in this situation is truly reprehensible,” the company explained.
“His actions are a huge slap in the face to Twitch community members with real disabilities such as Aieron, and groups such as AbleGamers, who have helped spread a message of inclusiveness and positivity to not only the Twitch community, but gaming as a whole.”
The broadcaster promised to offer refunds to any users who subscribed to his channel.
image: © Steve Snodgrass