There’s a new group of creators that are currently being aﬀected by unexpected DMCA claims. Twitch music is now causing streamers to face claims for using unlicensed music. And many of them feel blindsided.
It is the major player in the game streaming world. For years, YouTube has been the undisputed king of content—and even their gaming channel isn’t as big as Twitch’s. It goes without saying that Twitch is a key part of the current media landscape. The platform’s level of presence in the market gives extra weight to the claims faced by many of its users.
The claims that are affecting users of Twitch music are rooted within the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA). The laws within the DMCA were enacted in 1996, well before anyone could’ve imagined the media landscape of today. So, it’s no wonder that there is confusion surrounding what is and isn’t liable for facing claims. These claims have impacted users of major platforms, including YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram—and have for years. But, the laws within the act weren’t written with today’s breadth of available platforms in mind. In 1996, there was no precedent for social media misuse or accidental, improper placement of a copyrighted song on a video game stream. Let’s examine further.
Essentially, all streamers who feature Twitch music in their content that they either do not own, or do not have the appropriate licensing for, are liable to face DMCA claims. These claims will be filed against them by the RIAA, music labels, or the artists themselves. There are even third-party firms that have full-time employees searching content for unlicensed use of copyrighted music. For Twitch music, this is the case—whether it’s music in a live stream, or within VOD (content uploaded to Twitch).
DMCA claims on Twitch music are facilitated by the parties mentioned above when scanning the platform’s content to identify their copyrighted music. When a claim is filed involving Twitch music, the platform allows them to keep the music active, or issue a DMCA takedown if they feel like the use is a copyright infringement.
The best and safest thing you can do if you’re streaming on Twitch and want to avoid strikes, is to make sure your music is properly licensed. There are a lot of options — Twitch’s copyright-free library, licensing royalty-free music, using your own owned content, and licensing copyrighted music from places like Musicbed.
Twitch always intended for any music featured on their platform to be properly licensed, making that clear from the start that any misuse would not fly. The first widely publicized example of this occurred in June of 2018 when 10 of the most popular streamers were banned from the platform for 24-hours, and subsequently forced to remove all videos in which they featured unlicensed music. This public statement was, in large part, due to the fact that more than 2,500 takedown notices had been filed by the RIAA involving misuse of licensed music on twitch.
Twitch music is a huge part of the experience for both users and streamers alike. And in light of the recent crackdowns on copyright infringement, Twitch is planning to roll out automatic scanning of live streams to seek out copyright infringement. If flagged by Twitch, streamers will be given a strike. Multiple strikes for users can ultimately lead to a ban.
But like we mentioned before, there are plenty of things you can do to reduce running the risk of facing claims. First oﬀ, make sure your music is appropriately licensed. Twitch has an extensive library of royalty-free music available for you to use in your streams without risk of claims. But with up to two million streams live on Twitch at any given time—being viewed by countless millions around the world—you have to stand out if you’re going to cut through the clutter. That’s where licensing copyrighted music comes in.
There’s no easier way to make your content stand out from the rest than by featuring awesome music in your Twitch streams. People watching Twitch streams want to feel like they’re hanging out with whoever they’re watching. Music is the perfect medium to create that feeling and to elevate the quality of your streams.
Here at Musicbed, we can help you avoid these claims, and give you access to hundreds of independent musicians who will help your streams stand out.
With Musicbed, not only are you getting music that is cleared for use on all social platforms (including Twitch), but you’re getting music from real musicians that are tour-tested and of record-label talent. By using us you’re also directly supporting the musicians, since they receive 50% or more of every license they sell. Using our artists’ music can elevate your Twitch streams, while also helping the artists continue to create the work they love.
We know the biggest disappointment for many in this recent wave of takedowns is the fact that you are losing the ability to stream your favorite music on Twitch. Though it may seem like that, we do think you’ll find music from our roster of artists that can become not only your new favorite Twitch music to stream, but also to listen to.
Once you sign up for a Musicbed Subscription, it’s really up to you, depending on your preferred streaming software. Whether it be Twitch Studio or Streamlabs OBS, you can either download and play the song directly from your computer, or stream it directly from our website using the software to play the music through your stream. Easy as that.
Should you need to access your license for a song you downloaded, we’ve made it a breeze to do so with our platform. When you download a song under your subscription, you are also automatically downloading the rights to license that song — which is then stored in your account should you ever need it.
Twitch music goes a long way in elevating your streams, but you don’t need to risk DMCA claims to use great music. By using a source like Musicbed, you can use better music without the worry of claims.
Musicbed wants to help you get the most value out of your budget, while getting music of the highest quality. That’s why we oﬀer a subscription for Twitch streamers. Our subscription gives you unlimited access to our roster of over 700 artists and 20,000 songs.
And if you already have a personal subscription, you’re already covered to use Musicbed songs on your Twitch channel! Just email our team at email@example.com to add it to your plan if it is not already.