Twitch recently announced that it would be changing its VOD service and be partnering with Audible Magic to make sure content on Twitch does not contain unlicensed copyrighted audio. This has caused quite the upset in the community and it very understandable. Though we need make sure we understand the anger and the proper tools to solve the issue. My thoughts will be focused on the copyrighted audio side of things since that is something I understand much more. As a businessman this makes complete sense to Twitch. If they want to be bought out by Google this was an absolutely necessary move. Twitch has the obligation to make sure the company is able to support the employees that work their and community that supports them. Partnering with Google will do that without a doubt.
The fault does not like with Google nor does it lie with Twitch. It rests solely on the music companies that are dead set in using a business strategy that is not completely compatible in the modern digital world we live in. In a world where music is easily shared, the music industries needs to embracing that instead fighting it.
Look no further to the latest victim of copyright battles than the gaming community. Gaming is currently experiencing a wide growth in the free-to-play environment yet it is thriving extremely well. A content that is arguably more interactive than music is giving away that interactivity away for free and still making a ton of profit from it.
Having a low bar entry level for digital media is why streaming services like Spotify are immensely popular. In fact what is Twitch if not a streaming service. Many users are watching games being played by other players without paying a single sent, but that exposure will undoubtedly convince many consumers to invest more into that game. Well at least if that game is good.
In fact many musical artists that I have discovered recently was during a Twitch stream since many streamers have their playlist available. Yet by making it harder to have a streamer share his musical taste to an audience that has similar taste will ironically hurt those music companies more than it will anyone else.
I understand change is hard, but by fighting so hard to make change that will lose the benefit the industry could gain if it adapted to changing realities. An example outside of gaming I can point to is the Space Oddity by David Bowie. Chris Hadfield shot one of the best music videos in space dedicated to this song. Yet officially could be on YouTube online for a year for reasons I don't understand in this day and age of digital marketing. A new generation got to experience one of the greatest songs from David Bowie made for their own time.
Edit: Well that is a surprise. Amazon has turned out to be the company that has bought Twitch. This blog still works though since I still blame music companies and not Amazon or Twitch. I also agree that Amazon will be a great partner for Twitch.