Twitch tests a rewind button for live streams

There may be safety concerns for the feature.

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Jon Fingas
October 21st, 2021
ANKARA, TURKEY - OCTOBER 6: The logo of "Twitch" is displayed on a smartphone in Ankara, Turkey on October 6, 2021. (Photo by Hakan Nural/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Hakan Nural/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Have you ever just missed a big moment during a live Twitch stream? You might not have to in the future. The Verge reports Twitch is launching a month-long test that includes a "Rewind the Stream" button for live channels. Tap it and you'll jump two minutes back in the broadcast, with options to scrub through the entire stream history and play at different speeds. It's akin to playing an on-demand video, just with the choice to leap back to a live view.

The test also includes a "Remind Me" button (to alert you ahead of an upcoming stream) and "Watch Trailer" (for channels with intro videos). Twitch stressed that the test would "inform future features only," and that the buttons would vanish after the test. About a quarter of viewers should see the rewind test.

There are potential safety issues. Just Chatting streamers (that is, real-world cameras) are concerned this poses a safety risk. People might have a better chance of spotting and clipping an unintentional terms-of-service violation (say, a prankster in the background) or doxxing a streamer who inadvertently reveals sensitive info. This isn't the definitive implementation of the rewind button, though, and that's assuming it isn't scrapped. We wouldn't be surprised if Twitch let streamers restrict the rewind feature to certain viewers, or even disable it entirely.

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