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Home / Technology / Twitch explains the confusing copyright crackdown and urges users to delete videos

Twitch explains the confusing copyright crackdown and urges users to delete videos



The icon of the Twitch application is displayed on the smartphone screen.
enlarge / Photo illustration of the Twitch logo on the smartphone.

Twitch today apologized to users for how it handled the copyright crackdown last month, but the site still told streamers that they would have to stop using copyrighted recordings to avoid further removal notices. Twitch, a popular game streaming site acquired by Amazon for US$970 million in 201

4, was forced to take more active copyright actions against record companies. But Twitch’s improper handling of the repression has left users confused about which videos violate copyright and how users can comply with the rules without deleting all past videos.

Twitch said in today’s blog post that users have been asking them how to stream without worrying about obtaining a DMCA. [Digital Millennium Copyright Act] The answer is that if the user does not own the copyright, they need to stop using the recorded music in the stream and delete old videos that contain copyrighted music.

Twitch explained:

Most importantly, unless you own all the rights in the music, or get permission from the necessary rights holder, please don’t play the recorded music in the stream. This is the best protection for your video stream. If you are not sure whether you have all the rights, you probably don’t. If you want to include recorded music in the stream, please use a fully licensed alternative, such as Twitch’s Soundtrack, or other music libraries with cleared rights, such as Soundstripe, Monstercat Gold, Chillhop, Epidemic Sound, and NCS.

Twitch said that 99% of the copyright notices it recently received from record companies “because the streamers are playing in the background of its stream.” But this does not mean that the music in the game is completely safe to use.

“Although we have received very few DMCA notices for in-game music, if you are playing a game in which music is recorded, we recommend that you check its end user license agreement (game) to understand how these terms cover the meaning of that music. Streaming.” Twitch said. “One way to do this is to search the official EULA of the game online, and then press ctrl + f (Command + f on a Mac) to search for words such as “stream”, “license” and “music”. Lead to the right part. If you’re not sure about the copyright, some games allow you to turn off the music while streaming, or you can mute the game audio yourself.”

Although it covers future video streams, Twitch users still need to worry about their previous videos. “For your streaming media files (VOD and clips), now, if you think it contains unauthorized music, your only choice is to either browse them one by one, or for clips, please use our deleted “Delete All” tool Provided”, Twitch wrote. “We know that both options have shortcomings, and we are working hard to provide you with more and better options as soon as possible.”

Confusing repression

Twitch’s copyright crackdown occurred about three weeks ago. As we wrote at the time, Twitch surprised users by posting a large number of copyright removal emails, which “not only did not tell the streamers that they posted the alleged infringing content, but… it also said that Twitch was only removing it completely. Content without giving users an opportunity to appeal.”

Twitch said in today’s blog post that due to the surge in copyright claims from record companies, it must be suppressed:

Until May of this year, streamers received less than 50 music-related DMCA notifications on Twitch each year. However, beginning in May, representatives of major record companies began to send thousands of DMCA notices every week. The target audience of these notices was the creator’s archives, most of which were for track fragments in Clips with years of history. We will continue to receive a lot of notifications, and we don’t want it to slow down.

As CNN reported in August, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) issued more than 1,800 copyright notices to Twitch users in June alone, and only 710 such copyright notices have been issued since 2017. statement.

Made a mistake

Twitch admitted in the blog post that it had made some mistakes and promised to provide users with a better system in the future. Twitch said that the warning emails sent to users “do not contain all the information you would normally get in a DMCA notice,” making it difficult to “make an informed decision about submitting a counter-notification or seeking revocation.”

Twitch stated that it did not give users enough time to respond to these notifications, and that it provided insufficient tools:

One of the mistakes we made was not building enough tools to allow creators to manage their own VOD and Clip libraries. You are very upset, the only option we provide is the bulk deletion tool for Clips, and we only gave you three days to notify you to use this tool. Earlier we could develop more complex and easier-to-use tools. We are not on us. And we can provide creators with longer time to resolve their VOD and Clip libraries, which is also a missed opportunity. We apologize for these errors and we will do better.

Twitch promises to “expand technology to detect copyrighted audio” and to provide users with “a more refined way to manage your archives, not just the “delete all” option,” but the site did not disclose how much this will cost Long time.

Other changes in the future will include[ing] Twitch said that when users receive a DMCA notice, it will ensure that users are provided with the necessary detailed information, especially “information about alleged copyright infringement works.” Twitch also promised to provide better tools to submit a “counter notification if you believe you have the right to use the content.”

Twitch can also negotiate a new license agreement with record companies, but it seems impossible to reach a comprehensive agreement.

Twitch wrote: “We are actively talking with major record companies to explore potential methods for other licenses applicable to the Twitch service.” “That is, the record company’s current licensing structure used with other services (usually from the creator It collects a portion of the revenue there and is used to pay for the revenue of the record company) is of little significance to Twitch. The vast majority of our creators do not record music as part of the music stream, and have generated considerable for creators of such transactions Revenue impact.”

Twitch also provides answers to frequently asked questions about DMCA and copyright issues, and has established a user forum to discuss the topic.


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