Twitch streamer and speedrunner SHiFT finally got his SpongeBob emote approved—all he had to do was erase the tighty-whities.
The streamer informed fans of the good news in a tweet today, explaining that his shiftRIP emote was only approved by Twitch after SpongeBob’s underwear was made transparent.
“After trying to figure out what could possibly be ‘sexual’ about it for 10 days while begging for Twitch to give me answers, shiftRIP has finally been verified after… making the underwear transparent,” SHiFT said.
In what seemed like a baffling chain of events, the speedrunner’s initial emote was rejected by Twitch for “imagery of sexual content or nudity.” Even though he implored the platform for answers as to how a cartoon of a house-cleaning product could be deemed sexual content, Twitch never responded.
A minor change in underwear transparency was enough to pass the platform’s Emoticon Guide, however.
Although SHiFT was frustrated at the lack of communication from Twitch staff, he acknowledges the platform’s reluctance to start a precedent of allowing underwear in emotes.
“I understand why Twitch doesn’t want ‘underwear emotes’ on their site, because underwear applied to humanoid characters can be used sexually and they probably don’t want to set that precedent,” SHiFT said.
SHiFT is the current speedrun record holder for 100-percent completion of SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom in one hour, 20 minutes, and 50 seconds. He also has the most-watched channel for the game.