Twitch changes its policy and stops protecting streamers in copyright disputes, banning and exposing them to millions of dollars in fines


In the last year, the streaming platform Twitch has seen how their views grew by 45%, thanks to the success of its streamers, mainly focused on broadcasting video games … but increasingly open to more formats. And that success has also been accompanied by a greater number of legal conflicts, mostly related to copyright.

And unfortunately for Amazon, which owns the platform, more and more rights holders –and not just video game distributors– are affected by the actions of the biggest Twitch stars.

Last Friday, ‘Pokimane’, one of the most popular streamers on Twitch (8.5 million followers) was ‘banned’ from the platform for broadcasting from his channel the popular Nickelodeon animated series ‘Avatar: the Last Airbender’: the notification (and the interruption of the broadcast) reached him while he was reaping around 25,000 views.

Pokimane was not surprised by Twitch’s decision: “It was inevitable that publishers would take action“.

The ban only lasted 48 hours (fortunately for her, since she has an exclusive contract with Twitch), but Pokimane’s It has not been the only notable ‘ban’ of the last weekss. Quite the contrary: in that period of time there has been a whole wave of them, protected by the US copyright law DMCA.

From VHS to STREAMING everywhere

Twitch stops being ‘mediator’

More and more streamers turn to this broadcast format based on commenting live television series to grab the attention of viewers. This kind of content, like the broadcasting of music, is not covered by the platform, but not frequently persecuted until now …

What the 10 Top-Earning Twitch Streamers Are Doing According to Leaked Data

His popularity was, in fact, causing a problem for Twitch. And we say “was” because the streaming platform has chosen to ‘get out of the way’: Resorting to an update to their terms of use, Twitch has established that, as of now, they ‘wash their hands.

“The responsibility to resolve disputes rests with the rights holder and the account holder. […] Twitch is neither empowered nor qualified to issue legal opinions in relation to allegations of copyright infringement “

In short: Twitch, on the one hand, has decided to apply the ‘heavy hand’ in terms of bans and expulsions, and on the other has abandoned its role as an intermediary —at least beyond notifying the user of the complaint—

… Thus allowing legal actions by rights holders to result in fines of between $ 2,500 and $ 1 million, a decision that many streamers they consider that it leaves them unprotected against the legal and economic power of large companies holders of the rights.


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