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Twitch ‘open minded to new structures’ for music licences


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Amid growing unrest from Twitch’s creator community about music-related DMCA takedowns – not to mention the unrest among music rightsholders that has spurred that barrage – Amazon’s live video service has addressed the issue in a long blog post aimed at its community.

Skip towards the end for the most interesting part from the music industry’s perspective. “Some of you have asked why we don’t have a license covering any and all uses of recorded music. We are actively speaking with the major record labels about potential approaches to additional licenses that would be appropriate for the Twitch service,” explained Twitch.

Alright, there’s a but. “That said, the current constructs for licenses that the record labels have with other services (which typically take a cut of revenue from creators for payment to record labels) make less sense for Twitch,” continued the post.

“The vast majority of our creators don’t have recorded music as a part of their streams, and the revenue implications to creators of such a deal are substantial. 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 rest of the post focuses on Twitch’s takedowns policy, and its increasingly clear advice to streamers. “Don’t play recorded music in your stream unless you own all rights in the music, or you have the permission of the necessary rights holder(s),” is the key phrase.

“If you’re unsure whether you own all the rights, it’s pretty likely you don’t. If you want to include recorded music in your stream, use a fully licensed alternative like Soundtrack by Twitch, or other rights-cleared music libraries such as Soundstripe, Monstercat Gold, Chillhop, Epidemic Sound, and NCS.”

Twitch is also promising improvements in the tools for detecting copyright audio and managing archive broadcasts and clips that contain it, as well as for dealing with DMCA requests. But it’s the “open-minded to new structures” part that gives us hope for a bigger resolution that serves both sides: Twitch and its creators, and music rightsholders and the creators they represent.

 

Image by Mano Kors / Shutterstock.com

Stuart Dredge

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