As DMCA and content restrictions become more of an issue on Twitch, the company has been slowly toting the launch of Soundtrack by Twitch which would offer a library of approved music that can be used on stream without worry of copyright issues. The program launched in a beta form just recently, and immediately following it, several Twitch streamers are reporting a wave of DMCA takedown notifications and warning emails from the streaming service.
We’ve known about Soundtrack by Twitch for a bit now. It was announced on September 30, 2020, promising users a worry-free way to keep approved music on in the background while streaming. The program actually places the music on a separate track from your stream, so supposedly there’s little to fear about Twitch having to mute or remove your content. As of today, the program went live in a beta form according to Twitch’s official Twitter. However, a day later, many users are also reporting emails and notifications of content being restricted or removed for copyright infringement, as noted by Rod “Slasher” Breslau and voice over, screen actor, and streamer Anna Brisbin.
I also got that DMCA takedown email from twitch but there’s no way to know what was claimed or what they took down so that’s fun.— Anna Brisbin✨ (@BrizzyVoices) October 20, 2020
I’m just gonna assume it’s that one time I threw caution to the wind for a Hamilton singalong and hope everything else was fine lol
According to entertainment and IP attorney Noah Downs, these takedowns and notifications are legit. Record companies have made this an issue in the music industry, YouTubers have caught their share of stress on DMCA matters for quite some time, and Twitch streamers have been far from safe from the fracas. That said, it seems Twitch is in full copyright crackdown mode now, conveniently following the launch of the Soundtrack by Twitch platform.
Given the fact that these DMCA notices come with little opportunity to reply and act as a “one-time warning to give you a chance to learn about copyright law,” it feels safe to say you’re better off using Soundtrack if it will suffice. For its part, Twitch has included a means to submit your own music for approval into the program so musical artists can safely use their music while streaming without fear of takedowns.