A Russian live streamer had his Twitch channel blocked without explanation on Wednesday after he launched a round-the-clock broadcast of a burning gas stove. The feed was accompanied by Russian music in an apparent attempt to troll the users from countries where gas prices have skyrocketed in recent months.
The first stream was launched on September 17 by a user named russiangas1 and showed a kitchen where four gas burners were running on full blast for hours on end. A thermometer could be seen in front of the stove showing audiences how hot it was in the room and a clock in the background showed that the stream was not on a loop.
Russiangas1 added a caption to the video reading: “From Russia with Love!” and stated that he pays just €1.44 ($1.43) a month for all the gas he is burning. He also put up a message encouraging everyone to be kinder to each other and shared a link for donations to buy a new gas stove.
At the time of writing, the russiangas1 channel is inaccessible on Twitch, and users are instead greeted with a message reading: “This channel is currently unavailable due to a violation of Twitch's Community Guidelines or Terms of Service.”
It is unclear what terms were violated by the stream, but the channel managed to draw a lot of attention while it was online and has even inspired several copycat streams. One channel, russiangas2, is similarly running a gas stove around the clock while another channel, russianhotwater, is endlessly filling up a tub with hot water.
Gas prices in Europe have surged since Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine in late February. After Western nations imposed sanctions on Moscow and its energy supplies, gas flows from Russia to Europe were reduced to a fraction of their usual volumes. The issue was exacerbated after the complete shutdown of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline last month, caused by technical issues related to sanctions, according to Russia.
Moscow supplied about 40% of the European Union’s gas before the conflict in Ukraine. EU imports from the sanctioned country are now below 9%, according to Brussels.
Soaring gas prices coupled with the closure of Nord Stream 1 have prompted European governments to implement emergency measures to ensure they have enough energy to survive the winter.