Twitch implemented this week monitoring tools similar to those used by YouTube, intended to keep copyrighted music out of archived videos.
The tool scans 30 minute video sections and, if anything is detected, the entire video is muted.
As expected, Twitch broadcasters and viewers alike are unhappy with the change, and some of the side effects have been pretty funny.
One user, for example, was playing Fallout 3 and had the in-game radio station turned on, resulting in the video being muted. As noted by Kotaku, even some of Twitch’s own archived weekly broadcasts have been muted as a result of this.
The tool, while irritating, actually makes some sense on YouTube; people are uploading music without adding any personal content to it, treating YouTube as a radio station. While that kind of thing might be convenient for users, there’s a pretty straightforward reason for record companies to want to take those down.
Twitch broadcasts, however, aren’t simply users uploading albums, and the case to argue Twitch resulting in lost sales is much more difficult to justify, making this move look unnecessarily heavy-handed.
Live streams, however, are an exception currently, as the tool only monitors archived broadcasts.
Who wants to protest with a 24 hour Rock Band marathon?