With Google at the helm this was bound to happen and Twitch users may as well give up now.
Anyone who uses Youtube will be familiar with the over zealous copyright protection of some audio. Videos are flagged for copyright infringement if there is any audio Youtube’s system detects as copyright material. The problem with this is that game audio and even background noises can be detected and flagged. I’ve heard of cases of TVs being on in the background and videos being flagged.
We’ve partnered with Audible Magic, which works closely with the recorded music industry, to scan past and future VODs for music owned or controlled by clients of Audible Magic. This includes in-game and ambient music. When music in the Audible Magic database is detected (“Flagged Content”), the affected portion of the VOD will be muted and volume controls for that VOD will be turned off. Additionally, past broadcasts and highlights with Flagged Content are exportable but will remain muted.
The Audible Magic technology will scan for third party music in 30 minute blocks — if Audible Magic does not detect its clients’ music, that portion of the VOD will not be muted. If third party audio is detected anywhere in the 30-minute scanned block, the entire 30 minutes will be muted.
Note this will not affect live broadcasts but if you plan on creating highlights, as suggested in our earlier story due to the new removal of VODs policy, then you will be hit.
The real kicker comes with this comment.
“Please note that Audio Recognition is not guaranteed to be 100% accurate. “
Based on our own experiences with Youtube it’s more often wrong than right. Now Twitch users will have to go through a support system to claim that audio is not copyright and if the support is as bad as Youtube’s you could be waiting weeks or even months.
While we don’t agree with using copyright material such as music in videos without permission, Twitch users will now have to stop playing music during their streams if they want to keep their videos.
With the Google acquisition in the process of being finalised, it may have been finalised for all we know, this is the first stage of the service integrating systems used by Google and Youtube.
It’s also worth noting that Youtube does place a copyright flag on videos which are gameplay so we’re not quite sure if all Twitch VODS could eventually be flagged as they show gameplay. Twitch users are going to have to jump through hoops now to get the most from the service. The only organisations that will benefit will be “networks” who will take a cut of revenue from the casters to handle any copyright and permission issues. It will follow a similar model to Youtube in the end.
Twitch will now be more hassle that it’s worth. We mentioned it earlier, take a look at GamingLive.tv which has just launched or Streamup which offers a similar service.
Will you continue to use it? What are your thoughts?