Some Twitch streamers are walking a thin line between new ways of interacting with their audience and breaking the platform’s rules.
Variety streamer Trainwreckstv streamed reality cooking show Masterchef on his channel last night for about three hours. He placed his face cam in the top right of the screen and occasionally talked with his chat about what was happening in the show. He streamed the episodes by opening the ones that were uploaded on YouTube.
Trainwreck’s stream took place normally and its VOD was still available this morning. But by streaming Masterchef, he broke one of Twitch’s Terms of Service.
Item 2a of Section 8b of the Terms of Service mentions “User Content Representations and Warranties,” and it says that any content creator using Twitch warrants that their content will not “infringe, violate, or misappropriate any third-party right, including any copyright, trademark, patent, trade secret, moral right, privacy right, right of publicity, or any other intellectual property or proprietary right.”
Twitch also has a specific rule about television shows in its Community Guidelines. The item that addresses intellectual property rights reads that “any unauthorized content you share on Twitch may be subject to a takedown by the rights holder(s) to remove the infringing content from Twitch, and is a violation of our Terms of Service and Community Guidelines.”
The company lists that “sharing content from other sites” and “showing movies, television shows, or sports matches” without permission from the copyright owners is forbidden. From Trainwreck’s behavior during the stream, it’s unlikely that he had authorization to stream Masterchef, but that’s not confirmed at this time.
If Trainswreck is suspended or banned for this stream, other Twitch content creators could also be targeted in the future. Félix “xQc” Lengyel, for instance, has streamed television shows and YouTube content on his channel a few times, but rarely to the same extent as Trainwreck.
At the time of writing, Trainwreck’s channel remains available.