In yesterday’s bulletin, we covered the news that livestreaming platform Twitch has reminded users that DJ sets are among the “types of music content you may not use in Twitch streams or VODs”. We suggested that the new guidelines may have been in response to an uptick in copyright takedowns filed by music rightsholders, and… we were right.
“This week, we’ve had a sudden influx of DMCA takedown requests for clips with background music from 2017-19. If you’re unsure about rights to audio in past streams, we advise removing those clips,” explained Twitch’s official support account on Twitter. “This is the first time we have received mass DMCA claims against clips. We understand this has been stressful for affected creators and are working on solutions, including examining how we can give you more control over your clips.”
This is a big problem for Twitch: in that three-year period, the biggest streamers on the platform (gamers, rather than DJs, we should stress) could have broadcast hundreds or even thousands of times. But it also poses the question: what would the licensing deal look like for Twitch that tackles this challenge, paying rightsholders and musicians fairly while enabling the Amazon-owned platform to continue to flourish?