Game footage streaming specialist Twitch has announced that it will be scanning its archives for potential copyright infringement, and deleting any videos older than two weeks.
Selected to power the live-streaming functionality of both Sony's PS4 and Microsoft's Xbox One, Twitch - a hugely successful off-shoot of Justin.tv - allows gamers to stream live gameplay footage from their consoles or PC. This footage can then be saved as an archive, or edited into a highlight reel - either of which then being accessible on-demand from the Twitch website or its various client applications.
With rumours circulating of a $1 billion buy-out by Google, however, the company is making a few changes. One that will affect all users is a reduction in how long archived footage may be kept: standard users will now have their recordings removed from the video-on-demand service, while power users and registered partners will be able to keep theirs for 60 days. Highlight reels will still be kept indefinitely, the company has confirmed, but will be limited to a maximum length of two hours - presumably to prevent circumvention of the archive deletion rule by adding everything to the highlight reel.
A bigger issue that has Twitch users riled is the news that all on-demand content - but not, the company is quick to point out, live streams - are to be scanned using an automated copyright infringement detection system for unlicensed audio. Should unlicensed music be found, a half-hour chunk of the video will be permanently muted with no way to restore the audio.
'We’ve partnered with Audible Magic, which works closely with the recorded music industry, to scan past and future VODs for music owned or controlled by clients of Audible Magic,
' the company confirmed in its announcement
late last night. 'This includes in-game and ambient music.
Users whose videos are flagged incorrectly, or who believe they have a right to use the audio that triggered the filter, can appeal by submitting notification to Twitch in a similar fashion to a counter-notification under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA,) the company has stated.