WoW Twitch streamer and OTK co-founder Asmongold has called on fellow streamers to come together and change DMCA legislation amid fears over future bans and strikes.
Twitch and DMCA go together about as well as oil and water. Under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, streamers are not able to broadcast licensed music without risking a strike, as allowing the music to be streamed could see legal action be taken against the platform by record labels.
But sometimes strikes are handed out completely erroneously and for the most bizarre reasons. Back in March, GTA RP streamer Ramee received a strike for “sirens and horn blasts” playing in the background, while more recently Warzone streamer NICKMERCS had to delete all of his VODs amid DMCA fears.
Twitch has announced that they are planning to work with music labels to come to a viable solution that suits all parties, but this hasn’t stopped outrage at streamers losing VODs of previous streams.
As such, Asmongold has suggested a potentially risky solution to undoing DMCA legislation and preventing streamers from being targeted with DMCA bans.
“Streamers and YouTubers should get together and bribe (lobby) politicians to change these ridiculous and antiquated laws,” he said on Twitter. “Embarrassing that the internet still follows a law written in 1998.”
However, other streamers questioned the viability of this tactic, as TSM streamer and Twitch partner Jake ‘ChocoTaco’ Throop said: “1998? we still follow stuff from the 18th century.”
1998? we still follow stuff from the 18th century. Unlucky
— chocoTaco (@chocoTaco) May 28, 2021
Current legislation describes a DMCA takedown as: “When content is removed from a website at the request of the owner of the content or the owner of the copyright of the content. It is a well-established, accepted, internet standard followed by website owners and internet service providers.
“Any owner of content has the right to process a takedown notice against a website owner and/or an Online Service Provider (e.g. ISP, hosting company etc.) if the content owner’s property is found online without their permission.”
Given the money behind record labels, it would take a monumental collaborative effort from streamers to successfully lobby politicians to change the system. As things stand, streamers will likely have to be patient while Twitch works with record labels to find a solution.