After pausing operations to review internal policies, the Army esports team will resume streaming in the near future, an Army spokesperson told Military Times on Tuesday.
The team will also reinstate access for approximately 300 accounts previously banned for harassment.
The Army esports team was created in 2018 to connect talented civilians with service members through a relatable activity. Soldiers, sailors, and airmen play popular video games like Call of Duty and Fortnite while chatting with viewers about military life and job opportunities.
Last month the team was the center of controversy after banning users who asked about war crimes in Twitch streams and being accused of offering fake giveaways.
At the time, an Army spokesperson said the team would be “reviewing ways to customize its submission forms and provide more clarity for each of its giveaways.”
Upon hearing of the controversy, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., disapproved of the military’s use of video game streaming to recruit young people and on July 22 proposed an amendment to the House Appropriations bill that would prohibit such tactics.
“We cannot conflate war and military service with this kind of gamified format,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a speech on the House floor.
The amendment failed to pass the House on Thursday, with a final vote of 292-126 against.
A date has not yet been set for when the Army’s team will resume streaming, but a spokesperson said that “personal attacks, crude language, pornographic material, harassment and bullying will not be tolerated on the stream, and action will be taken if individuals choose to engage in this behavior.”
Harm Venhuizen is an editorial intern at Military Times. He is studying political science and philosophy at Calvin University, where he's also in the Army ROTC program.