New Twitch tech blocks copyrighted music in videos

YouTube-style copyright protection blocks in-game music in videos

Gaming broadcasting service Twitch has made a number of major changes to its Video on Demand systems, the company announced on Wednesday.

New technology implemented as of today will detect the use of copyrighted music in stored videos (VODs), muting all audio in sections of videos deemed to be in violation, and volume controls for the addicted video will be turned off.


Crucially, this applies not only to commercial music typically played in the background of live Twitch streams, but also includes in-game music.

"Past broadcasts and highlights with Flagged Content are exportable but will remain muted," add the Twitch announcement, which is implementing the tech via a partnership with 'Audible Magic'.

The detection a muting process will also be rather imprecise - adio will be muted in 30-minute chunks, Twitch went on to explain. "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."

The tech will only scan VODs - live broadcasts will remain unaffected. Twitch details the tech and how it will work in greater detail on its official blog.

YouTube implemented a similar system in December 2013 that resulted in the mass culling of "flagged" material from major posters, sparking a major user and industry backlash over the site's copyright enforcement policies.

In a separate but somewhat related announcement today, Twitch confirmed it will release a new video manager tool introducing a 2-hour length limit on permanently stored 'Highlights' videos, new charges for increasing storage VODs, and removing the 'Save Forever' option on past broadcasts.

This will be implemented on August 27. Users are advised to export past broadcasts they wish to keep indefinitely to YouTube before that date, and create Highlights for footage that they wish to remain on their Twitch channel. More info is here.