Twitch and the National Music Publishers’ Association reach a compromise

Twitch has agreed to offer music publishers improved tools to help them report streamers for using their copyrighted music.

Twitch and the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA) have had issues for a while now, but they’ve finally come to an agreement. Rather than a full licensing agreement, Twitch has instead opted to offer music publishers a partnership of their own.

The announcement from the two organisations talks about “a new process” that Twitch has made for music rights holders that will let them “report certain uses of their music… inadvertently or incidentally” in streams. Whether or not this means a repeat of the mass DMCA takedowns last year or a fix for them remains to be seen.

David Israelite
Image: NMPA / David Israelite

Said music publishers will be offered an opportunity to opt in to this process and potentially even start collaborating with the platform’s content creators. The announcement goes on to state that this “will provide new opportunities to music publishers” and give “both the gaming experience and songwriter exposure” through those collaborations.

David Israelite, NMPA President and CEO, says that “Both NMPA and Twitch are creator-focused and our respective communities will greatly benefit from this agreement”.  Even Twitch’s own Tracy Chan adds that the company “[looks] forward to innovative collaborations”.

But so far, both have failed to mention how it benefits streamers directly, or what those collaborations could even entail.

On the one hand, this new process makes it a lot easier for streamers using copyrighted songs, intentionally or not, to be tracked down and reported. Which possibly means the DMCA takedowns will just continue.

But on the other, it could be at least part of the answer streamers are searching for, if it means they’re given musical content to use without worry. Plus it promotes the music industry inside the gaming sphere too, which is always an appreciated bonus. If those collaborations take place, that is.