Felix ‘xQc’ Lengyel has criticized record labels going “full crazy” on Twitch stars, saying their latest DMCA takedowns have been “really weird” for targeting music being used in deleted VODs, in the background of IRL streamers, and more.
DMCAs have been plaguing Twitch streamers big and small over the last few months, but in the last two weeks, the record labels have kicked it up a notch.
Almost every top streamer, from Pokimane to CouRage, and even xQc himself, have received DMCA notices and copyright strikes from Twitch. Record labels have been pursuing the streaming platform and its users for playing music without the proper licenses.
I might get DMCA banned from Twitch…
— Jack “CouRage” Dunlop (@CouRageJD) October 20, 2020
While some record labels have struck deals with streamers, most are just firing away, hitting down any streamer over any clip. So when xQc was addressing the controversy on November 4, he did so “super carefully.”
“I don’t know what it is with their system, but they’re recording and they’re looking at infractions from past clips from years ago that are already deleted. They’d be flagged content that was infractionary from years ago and they’ve stored it in a database and they’re now taking action,” he claimed.
He argued that Twitch are stuck in a corner over the DMCA debacle though. They need to hand out punishments to streamers to prove they are tough on copyright.
The three-strikes rule is one way of implementing it, helping save Twitch and other platforms from getting sued under the DMCA, which can cost upwards of $250,000 per instance, according to xQc.
“If you’re not familiar with the laws, your platform — Twitch or YouTube — needs to show good faith that they apply the rules and the laws, and if someone says ‘you did something wrong,’ they have to show that they [hand out] punishments,” he said.
“It’s why the three-strike rule is necessary because if they don’t ban people, [Twitch] will get sued. It’s up to like $250,000 per infraction, so I don’t think that past three-strikes, any platform is going to dish out $250,000 for anybody every time. That’s just not realistic.”
There is one thing in particular that irks xQc though, and that’s record labels going after clips people have no control over. Whether they’ve been deleted, or it’s music in a video game, or just IRL streamers on the street, those DMCA takedowns are “really weird” to the Twitch star.
“People are getting warned for music that was playing in the streets or in a game from like four years ago. That’s really weird. The song is literally in a video game, when you’re playing it, there’s nothing you can do to avoid it.”
Some streamers, like Michael ‘shroud’ Grzesiek, have called on streamers to “unite” to try and fight back against the copyright claims. However, most have resigned to deleting their VODs and hoping that the strikes go away.