Earlier this month, Michael “Shroud” Grzesiek reached 100,000 subscribers on Twitch—a massive milestone that most channels will never get close to breaking. Even though Shroud has the most subscribers on Twitch, it doesn’t mean he’s locked in as the most followed channel this month.
According to statistics provided by TwitchMetrics, a third party Twitch API tracking site, Shroud isn’t the most followed channel for March. Instead, Novat0r_Knob is the most followed channel in March. So far this month, Shroud has amassed nearly 450,000 followers while Novat0r_Knob is closer to 500,000 new followers.
While the numbers don’t lie, everything might not be as it seems. Novat0r_Knob appears to be wrongly manipulating the platform for multiple reasons. While TwitchMetrics shows that Novat0r_Knob joined Twitch in July 2016, the channel didn’t have a livestream until earlier this month. During Novat0r_Knob’s first stream, TwitchMetrics shows the channel gained 487,419 followers—a feat that’s nearly impossible to achieve without manipulating the platform.
The livestream only lasted for 36 minutes and appeared to be advertising a Russian casino based on the stream’s title. Despite gaining nearly half a million followers in under an hour, TwitchMetrics shows that the channel peaked at only 727 live viewers.
With so much suspicious activity, it seems Twitch has taken notice. The channel appears to have been banned recently, putting Shroud back on top as the most subscribed and followed channel for March.