The Projekt Melody VTuber saga with Twitch continues to develop, as, following a thorough rebuttal, the platform has rescinded their ban just over a day after levying it against the AI streamer.
Projekt Melody is inherently an interesting character with intriguing legal paramaters, as a Twitch streamer that is an AI VTuber, who was designed by someone other than the eventual IP owner. The intelligence is artificial, the body is virtual, and, as it turns out, that means the original designer of the character could pressure Twitch into destroying the entire channel with a set of DMCA filings.
Next, the channel, which boasted nearly 300,000 followers and was ranked as one of the top 50 most-watched English-speaking “Just Chatting” streams, was un-partnered and banned indefinitely. And, as has become obvious, this was caused by a DMCA filing by the original designer of the virtual character.
Now, Twitch has apparently unbanned Projekt Melody following a thorough rebuttal in which the streamer brought out all of the receipts. In their claims, they indicate that DigitrevX had ceded IP ownership candidly before trying to change agreements and obtain more money for their creation.
As shown in a screenshot, Projekt Melody’s channel was taken down because of an “infringing content” filing from DigitrevX’s email. But this has been successfully refuted by the streamer, as they responded with a thorough bashing of DigitrevX’s behavior and allegations.
As the timeline goes, DigitrevX created the Projekt Melody virtual persona for $5,000. This was proven with screenshots of the invoice and eventual payments, before going into the IP ownership discussion.
In one particularly damning example, the channel’s owner proves that the IP was under their ownership, with text from DigitrevX directly.
While Projekt Melody’s Twitlonger continues to explain how things got to this point and how disastrous the relationship between original artist and current IP owner became, those points are unimportant to the DMCA filing.
“I’m lucky enough to have a career that I absolutely love with supportive and redonkulous friends, and he is trying to take all that away, even though I paid him for my body.” As Projekt Melody explains, this is an uncomfortable situation but the payment was made and the IP was transferred.
It appears this argument holds weight, as the streamer has been reinstated on Twitch (although their partnership has yet to be). Situations like this will be interesting to monitor moving forward as more and more VTubers emerge.