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Twitch Streamers May Be Banned for Broadcasting TV Shows

Jessie Thomas
Twitch Streamers May Be Banned for Broadcasting TV Shows

The new manner of Twitch streamers may lead to them being banned. The manner in question is broadcasting movies and TV show episodes on Twitch, which has already caused issues between the streaming platform and copyright advocates. In short, if it seems to you that sharing a show from Netflix in a stream on Twitch is a good idea, Twitch doesn’t think so.

Of course, it’s not so simple. The streamers do not violate copyright for the violation’s sake. No, they watch a movie or an episode and add their comments to it, like they do when streaming their gameplays. Formally, it’s rather generating a derivative product (like a review or a parody) than simply pirating the origin.

So far, it results in Twitch banning streamers of this sort. This menace to cinema reviewers became even stronger as the streaming platform introduced content recognition tools that detect copyrighted content automatically. As Marcus “dj WHEAT” Graham, the Head of Twitch Community Productions, put it, it’s DMCA’able, so Twitch will not tolerate copyright violations.

On the other hand, as these streams are in high demand, there must be a way to make them legal. It’s not clear yet how Twitch will handle a similar situation with music used by streamers, but at least it initiated some negotiations with publishers. Maybe something like this is possible with VOD services: they authorize their video content, streamers comment on it, and everybody is happy?

A funny fact: a now-iconic Ugandan movie Who Killed Captain Alex? (the entire budget of which is under $200) now only exists thanks to a commenter who recorded his performance while watching it, in a Twitch-like manner. Maybe now these reviewers can save some masterpieces as well, so the trend deserves more attention.

And what do you think about it? Do you think a video review is a derivative action or just a copyright violation? Do you like commented streams as a genre? Share your opinion in the comments if you please!


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