Twitch promises to do more despite being blasted by major music business groups for turning a blind eye to the usage of unlicensed songs on its service and irritating and confusing Twitch producers for removing their copyright infringement images.

Twitch logo
(Photo : Twitch Interactive/Wiki Commons)
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Twitch told streamers in a long blog post on Wednesday that they must avoid playing recorded music on their streams (unless it's officially licensed) in what appears to be their first formal clarification on the subject.

"If you haven't already, you should review your historical VODs and Clips that may have music in them and delete any archives that might," the company added.

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The live-streaming website operated by Amazon has reported that it is actively talking to the major record labels regarding potential alternatives to additional licenses suitable for the Twitch program.

The company also stated that the "existing licensing constructs" that record labels have with other platforms usually reducing revenue from producers for payment to other services.

"We're open-minded to new structures that could work for Twitch's unique service, but we must be clear that they may take some time to materialize or may never happen at all," the company said in the blog.

The song-copyright communiqué of Twitch arrives after many large U.S. music associations sent a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos last month (copying Emmet Shear's CEO of Twitch). Among other items, the letter accused Twitch of allowing its streamers to use the respective representatives' music without consent, in breach of Twitch's music guidelines.

Twitch said the music industry's ban on unlicensed music on its service had taken it off balance. According to the organization, reps for music publishers started receiving thousands of copyright-takedown notices from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) beginning this May directed at cached material from consumers, "usually for snippets of tracks in years-old clips." Before then, Twitch added, it got less than 50 DMCA updates a year relevant to music.

It examined DMCA notifications obtained from the end of May through mid-October, Twitch said, and noticed that more than 99 percent of them were for tracks played in the context of their stream by streamers.

"We were as surprised by this sudden avalanche of notifications as many of you were," Twitch said in the post. "We also realized that we needed to provide streamers with more educational programs and content management tools to help you deal with this unprecedented number of notifications coming in all at once," it added.

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Twitch apologized for the issue

Twitch apologized to creators for the anxiety created by the DMCA takedowns, noting that an alert email was sent to several entities last month regarding the videos removed from their profiles.

Currently, Twitch said in the same blog post it focuses on creating more user-friendly apps to help creators handle videos easier and have "as we pursue all possibilities" approved music options.

For now, Twitch said that "completely licensed" alternatives such as Soundtrack by Twitch can be used for consumers. That doesn't contain songs from big labels, though. In addition, the music organizations complained that" Twitch's prominent role is that its Soundtrack tool demands neither synch nor mechanical licenses. Meanwhile, Twitch says live streamers can also use rights-cleared music libraries such as Soundstripe, Monstercat Gold, Chillhop, Epidemic Sound, and NCS.

Twitch stated it would extend the usage of technologies to identify copyrighted audio, as well as offer more granular options for creators to handle your collection rather than only a 'delete anything' option.

Twitch has agreed to provide more comprehensive details in DMCA takedown notices. They will also give the creators easier ways to contest infringement allegations, whether they think they have fair use protection or have permission.

With the deluge of DMCA alerts linked to music, Twitch said it has momentarily paused, implementing strikes against writers' profiles.

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Written by Tiziana Celine

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