Skip to Content

Twitch Landed in a Porn Controversy. Why the Streamer Will Be Fine Even If Ninja Is ‘Disgusted’

It's been a rough few weeks for Amazon-owned streaming site Twitch. Earlier this month, Tyler "Ninja" Blevins, the platform's biggest star, announced he would leave for Microsoft's streaming service Mixer. Over the weekend, a pornographic video was promoted on Blevins' old page.

After the inappropriate material was flagged, Twitch responded by removing the content and CEO Emmett Shear issued an apology.

According to Shear, the pornographic video in question came up on the Ninja Twitch channel, as the site promotes live video recommendations on accounts that don't have a live stream playing at the time. Shear also said the offending account was in violation of Twitch's terms of service and has been permanently suspended. Twitch's recommendation mechanism has also been suspended, in light of the incident.

Despite the high-profile hiccup, don't count Twitch out yet, says Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter. "I think this will be yesterday's news as soon as tomorrow," he adds.

The news of the Ninja channel's pornographic video gained traction as Blevins called out Twitch online. Blevins said he was "disgusted" on Twitter adding, "This wouldn't even have been an issue if they didnt [sic] use my channel to promote others in the first place…"

In addition to offering background on the situation, Shear addressed Blevins directly.

"On a more personal note, I apologize want to apologize directly to @ninja that this happened. It wasn’t our intent, but it should not have happened. No excuses," Shear added on Twitter.

Pachter notes that the move was the right response for the company, helping ensure the news blows over sooner rather than later. "It would be one thing if the response was, 'We're not sorry,'" he says.

Even losing Blevins in the first place isn't expected to serve as Twitch's death knell. Pachter equates the situation to Netflix losing Friends come 2020. A sizable portion of Netflix's viewers spend a great deal of time watching Friends—just as Twitch's audience has followed Blevins—but the fans are already on the site and looking at other shows or streamers.

"If you have the content, people will come," Pachter said. "There's always going to be a new hit. They're always going to have a new guy or girl."

More must-read stories from Fortune:

What you need to know about 8chan, the controversial site tied to the El Paso shooting

Verizon’s unlimited plans are getting cheaper. Here’s what you should know

—What CEOs, bankers, and tech execs think about a coming recession

—How an alleged Amazon theft ring got the goods

—Boeing adds a second flight control computer to the 737 Max

Catch up with Data Sheet, Fortune's daily digest on the business of tech.