Twitch brings massive changes and the Twitchpocalypse – Not good for streamers

It’s been a tough week for Twitch streamer following the announcement of new copyright measures. As you may or may not know, Google stepped in to buy Twitch for 1 billion USD and that deal has now apparently gone through. This is why we’re seeing massive changes to the popular streaming service.

twitchThis week Twitch sprung a couple of announcements on the community. The first is that VODs would no longer be saved and highlights will have to be created if videos were to be kept, which is a time consuming pain for streamers. The second change is the introduction of copyright audio detection on all saved highlight reels.

If you’ve used Youtube for storing videos then you’ll know how strict the audio detection system is, it would flag videos as copyright infringements if there was the slightest hint of music or even background sound that could be deemed owned by another party. We’ve even had videos flagged that had no music but were just straight talking interviews with us directly. The system is simply terrible.

While Twitch stream highlights will be scanned for audio infringements, there will be no audio detection on live streams. This means that any archived highlights deemed to include copyright audio will be muted by the automated system where that copyrighted audio appears in the saved highlight video. Twitch streamers will then have to raise an appeal if the video has been flagged, and if it’s as slow as Youtube, that could take weeks or months.

In the past 48 hours Twitch users have been leaving in droves to other services. Yesterday the IncGamers team took a look the Twitch alternatives to find out which streaming services are worth checking out if you want to jump ship because of these changes. It’s worth a read.

If you’re a Diablo 3 streamer then we advise you take a look at these other services. Twitch really has messed up quite badly. The Twitch CEO even went as far as saying “we screwed up and should have announced it ahead of time. Sorry”.

Yep, you sure did. Adios Twitch.

Tagged As: | Categories: Live Stream


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  1. The content ID thing is hardly fault. Do people live in a dream world, where they believe that the music industry would just sit idle by and watch? And if or which ever other streaming service would get as big as Twitch, do you really think the music mob wouldn't strike again?

    Sure Twitch should have mentioned the removal of old videos maybe 2-3 months in advanced. And sure it sucks with the 2 hour max on highlights, which the CEO said that they will look into for fx. people that does speedruns.

    We can all agree that there seems to be tons of false positives with the audio detection system right now, even funny examples with a weekly show from Twitch being muted. Maybe we should give Twitch more than a few days to work this out. They could for all we know have been under a tight deadline to launch this.

    But bottom line… its the music industry we should blame, that they can't see its free PR when people play their music on stream. With every new technology they fight the customers with the law, instead of embracing the new technology. Happened with records, cassettes, mp3 (Napster), YouTube and now Twitch. (And most likely even more places.)

    Streamers should in reaction play music that is free or under some nice license like creative commons.

    • Given that every song in the world, in hundreds of video forms and via concerts and everything else is now available on YT, which is owned by Google, I fail to see why they'd crack down on audio played in the background by streamers. I guess some people were using streaming as a sort of web radio station, and given that there are real web radio stations they were undercutting, I can see the issue.

      But the result seems to be banning/muting video game streamers who had something other than the game music playing in the background, which is just stupid.

    • The nusic industry can't be blamed for the terrible tech behind the detection system. I agree music should be protected but there's a long way to go until this system is effective.

      • They can be blamed for enforcing the use of said system however, despite the fact that everyone is well aware of how they don't work. When the system says your own videos are violating copyrights (which happened with Twitch) and your reaction isn't to disable it immediately until it's made to work as it should, then something is truly wrong in the world and one of that thing is the music industry that doesn't care about issues like this. If it would be enforced that your house has to use a faulty security system that sometimes wouldn't let you in, what would be your reaction?

        What the music industry also need to recognize is that almost nobody watches Twitch videos to listen to music and that when people do hear their music in the background of a video that may very well prompt people to buy said music. See, streamers listening to copyrighted music is kinda like free advertising for that music. In my view by cracking down on this the music industry is shooting itself in the foot (corporations are people after all, so they must have feet). Of course, when music sales will continue to decline they will be the last to realize why and they'll blame anyone but themselves for their shortsightedness.

    • The entertainment industry can't be blamed, some time ago they told Google (Youtube) to start removing copyright infringing material on their service or they'll be suing, even though content owner could have videos removed if they could prove infringement. Youtube bent over even though they would have won in court and implemented draconian policies. This is why there is automatic audio AND video detection on Youtube, and now Twitch, where innocent until proven guilty is flipped upside down.

      That said, Google is well aware of how damaging such policies can be, they enforce less and less requests to take down addresses and websites from their search results on their own and are slowly redirecting most plaintiffs to the court to take action against the websites themselves. If people start leaving Twitch in droves and it becomes too damaging you can bet Google will revert to its prior policy of content owner having the burden of proof.

  2. This is the most asinine decision they could make.

    I watch twitch with shazam queued up and ready to tag songs I hear that I like. I've purchased several albums because of what I heard on twitch. In other words– twitch is making them MORE money.

    No one is losing any money because of background music. This is just RIAA lawyers doing their job, and that's finding places to get rid of music.

  3. How long it would take until twitch collapses? Days…

    Imo, they should sign a deal with spotify (or whatever, at streamers choice, giving options) and let an app roll, paying "the machine" their precious coins based on the viewer count. Better than muted videos. Because I don't imagine people going in droves to itunes store thanks to muted LoL vod. I would rather have some change in my hat (anything except the service google is trying to create, which word on street says: pays close to nothing).

    I don't buy music anymore. It needs to be something really, really cool and usually old – and normally I'm buying a CD as an souvenir, not exactly due to the music in it, which I listen on spotify. Like an antique or something.

    The sales numbers are dropping, but not because musicians don't deserve money (live performances are cool, i.e.) – outside the apple mothership (where I'm currently at), the music you buy is really terrible to handle compared to premium spotify of happiness and love all-my-playlists-there, imo. And there are social tools, people get some money, etc. That embedded on livestream service, so we still can complain we can't hear our own music; that would be my solution.

    Maybe I gave Darude some fractions of cents, but I won't buy Sandstorm. Never.

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