Hey Sports Tech Fans,
It’s been a crazy week for Twitch streamers.
There have been a raft of take down notices through the DMCA protocol as a result of the streaming of recorded music.
People of a certain age will remember the RIAA, the Recording Industry Association of America, and their lawsuits against peer to peer networks like Napster, Limewire, Kazaa and others for the illegal distribution of recorded music.
The RIAA again seem to be leading the charge in these take down notices as they have lost money under American copyright law as streamers using content they represent hurts their bottom line.
With the advent of the streaming model for music, there is now a value on each stream of a song. When a Twitch streamer broadcasts a song to thousands of viewers, that represents lost revenue.
The main issue has come about with clips and video on demand on Twitch as these have been analysed by the RIAA and copyright claims have issued.
This has resulted in streamers getting an email from Twitch to say they are in violation and videos have been deleted on their behalf as Twitch have to by law or face a lawsuit themselves if they break the DMCA request.
This has resulted in a lot of Twitch streamers losing years of work, which must be heartbreaking for them.
Twitch as a platform is far less developed than Youtube when it comes to copyright issues.
Youtube implemented its Content ID system as a result of pressure from the music industry.
Twitch desperately needs a similar service to help the community stay within the law and to provide a better service.
The inclusion of being able to make clips and VOD’s private would also greatly help streamers as they could retain the content that they have produced over years of hard work.
But the reality is a lot of streamers have lost out and many more are worried about what the future holds.
Will streamers face lawsuits? Will they be banned as many have been?
The issue of bans was brought to an ironic place when a musician, DragonForce, was banned from Twitch for playing his own music.
Twitch operate a 3 strikes your out policy, which might equate to play 3 songs in a single stream.
A major issue for streamers receiving notices is that there has been no indication from Twitch which clips or VOD’s are the culprits.
Deleting everything is not a nice solution but some have made that choice.
Leaving everything up and hoping no lawsuits transpire is a major risk, especially for larger streamers who might become the targets as being made an example of.
The great Devin Nash has compiled a list of resources to help streamers take the actions they need to get onside and not face issues faced by DMCA take down notices.
You can check it out here https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1u0_VQHP1m_LiAlUwi8VTLTus9OfX2JkOSut2hqLKz1M/edit#gid=1035229811
If you are a streamer or know people that are, you should share this with them as they are at risk right now.
This story will continue to run and I hope that Twitch provide the streamers the tools they need to continue to grow inside the law.
Have a great sporting weekend,