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Twitch, Live Video Streaming Giant, to Silence Illegal Audio

Ahead of a likely acquisition by Google, the live-streaming behemoth is going legit.

Twitch, the streaming video service most well-known for webcasting major video game events, has announced it is implementing a copyright identification system for audio within its videos. It has been rumored since mid-May that Google is planning to buy the company for $1 billion (a report from VentureBeat in late July claimed that the deal has been signed, though neither company has confirmed), and yesterday’s move towards copyright legitimacy would seem to bolster those whispers. Indeed, the changes announced by Twitch are, if anything, a predictable outcome of owning and operating any large-scale media business on the modern web.

Twitch will deploy Audible Magic, a company founded in 1999 that is widely used by many internet giants, from Vimeo to Facebook, to identify copyrighted material.

Only stored, on-demand video will be analyzed by Twitch for infringing content, leaving the company’s wildly popular — a recent tournament drew 20 million pairs of eyeballs, according to games company Valve, and that’s not an all-time high — live streams to blast whichever beat they wish. Stored, on-demand video will be analyzed in 30-minute blocks, and if any non-licensed content is found within that, the volume of that 30-minute block will be muted to the user and the below message is displayed.

Twitch, Live Video Streaming Giant, to


In a blog post, the company recommends users check audio on their videos using three tools: Creative Commons, Jamendo and Song Freedom. They also offer, as most companies, an appeals process for videos misidentified and muted. Somewhat notably, they encourage copyright owners to notify them of any misuse of content, whether during a live stream or in an on-demand video.

The company also announced changes to its video storage systems, most notably an easier way for users to export to YouTube.