Twitch suspends trans actor Ian Alexander after telling hateful bigots to ‘touch some grass’

Ian Alexander's indefinite suspension notice

Non-binary Star Trek: Discovery star Ian Alexander has been suspended from Twitch after telling transphobes to “touch grass”.

In a tweet on Wednesday (20 July), the actor posted a picture of their indefinite suspension from the streaming platform for “violent hate speech” after they told transphobic users to “touch some grass” – the modern equivalent of telling someone to go outside.

[Twitch] suspended my account. I was receiving racist and transphobic troll comments where they were saying slurs,” Alexander wrote. “I censored them, told the trolls to touch some grass, and then my account got suspended mid-stream.

“I appealed the suspension, idk when I’ll get my channel back,” they continued.

According to its community guidelines, Twitch “does not permit behaviour that is motivated by hatred, prejudice or intolerance, including behaviour that promotes or encourages discrimination, denigration, harassment, or violence” against protected groups, which it defines as “a subset of the population with a shared protected characteristic”.

It has not been explicitly explained where Ian Alexander – best known for their parts in The OA and Star Trek: Discovery – violated the streaming platform’s code of conduct on hate speech. Some have claimed the ban may have been due to “raiding” which refers to a motivated group crashing a Twitch stream in an effort to shut it down.

Several fans have since criticised the ban, with one saying: “I’m so sorry, this is so backwards. I hope the appeal goes fast and you get an apology.” Others took the chance to tag Twitch support, saying: “Fix your system!”

The ban came on the same week trans streamer Keffals was suspended for showing a list of anti-LGBTQ+ slurs sent to her on her stream. According to a tweet posted on Thursday (21 July), her appeal was rejected and she was banned for 28 days.

“I was suspended for displaying a list of transphobic and homophobic slurs hurled at me because I am a prominent openly transgender streamer,” she said. “The only people who should be embarrassed are Twitch for suspending a trans person for openly talking about the harassment they receive.

“Twitch banned one of their biggest transgender streamers from their website for openly talking about the abuse they received,” Keffals continued in a tweet. “I do not understand how they f**ked up so badly.”

Keffals has vowed to stream on her YouTube channel until she gets her “Twitch account back”. And she’ll consider coming back to YouTube “based on how it goes”.

PinkNews has approached Twitch for a comment.