Over the last few days, numerous Twitch popular streamers with more than four million collective followers have reported that they’re being hit with Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) claims and strikes on clips dating back as far as 2016.
Some streamers are reporting that the strikes are even being issued in response to clips that were clipped by other users.
Twitch streamers fuslie and Edison Park have also noted that Twitch’s backend is making it difficult for them to find potentially infringing clips and avoid further DMCA strikes because they’re unable to load clips that are more than a year old and the “Delete all clips for this video” functionality is broken.
Since these strikes are being issued retroactively on clips that are more than three years old, many streamers fear that they could result in account terminations under Twitch’s current system where an account is terminated after it receives three strikes.
More than 20 streamers say they’ve been hit with DMCA strikes so far including:
Alinity: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from June 16, 2017 which she wrote is “almost certainly from playing Just Dance” with the claim being on a song that’s in the game.
JakenbakeLIVE: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from November 12, 2017.
39daph: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from August 21, 2019.
fuslie: Hit with two copyright claims on clips from February 17, 2019 and November 25, 2019.
macaiyla: Hit with a copyright claim on eight clips from February 23, 2019, February 28, 2019, and April 19, 2019.
littlesiha: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from December 1, 2016.
TheHayleyBaby: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from February 23, 2019.
LittleRagerGirl: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from November 18, 2018.
Lucas: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from May 31, 2017.
FlashyKlau: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from August 13, 2019.
SS_PUPS: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from August 13, 2017.
OMaGicZ: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from August 13, 2017.
Donnahh: Hit with a copyright claim on a clip from January 29, 2019.
cloakzy: Tweeted that he got a copyright claim on one of his clips.
NymN: Tweeted that he got a copyright claim on a clip from his birthday last year.
BotezLive (Alexandra Botez): Tweeted that she got a copyright claim on a one-year-old clip.
ChloeLock: Tweeted that she got a copyright claim on a clip from 2017.
Mikaylah: Tweeted that she got a copyright claim on three clips.
LeClumsyFox: Tweeted that she got a copyright claim on a clip from 2017.
Youneh: Tweeted that she got two copyright strikes on clips from over a year ago.
KatieOhLee: Tweeted that she got a copyright claim and suspension on a clip from August last year.
Atira: Tweeted that she got a copyright strikes for clips dating back months/years.
Twitch Support has addressed the sudden influx of DMCA takedown requests and stated this is the first time it has received mass DMCA claims against clips.
For now, Twitch Support is advising streamers to remove any clips where they’re unsure about the rights to the audio and added that it is “working on solutions” that give creators more control over their clips.
This sudden influx of DMCAs and the current lack of tools on the Twitch backend for allowing Twitch users to easily find and mute or edit potentially infringing clips means that many Twitch streamers are now being forced to bulk delete their entire archives to protect their account from further DMCA strikes.
While most of the DMCA strikes from this current wave are related to music that the streamers have played themselves or in-game music from games such as Just Dance, there have been several examples of false DMCA takedown notices being issued against music content in the past.
Twitch streamer Masayoshi infamously received a DMCA notice on a track he didn’t even play and Halo soundtrack composer Marin O’Donnell was hit with bogus copyright claims on YouTube videos of his own music
Outside of music claims, there are countless examples of major flaws in the current DMCA system being weaponized and used as a censorship tool against creators.
And even President Trump has had his memes with brief music clips censored in response to copyright claims.