Is Streaming Copyrighted Music Allowed On Twitch
As we mentioned above, you are not allowed to play music that you do not have the rights to play. Play music without a license and youre violating copyright law. Twitchs Terms of Service and Community Guidelines explicitly say: You may not include music you dont own in your Twitch streams or VODs.
Currently, many Twitch streamers unintentionally violate the law because they want to give their audience the best experience possible. Unfortunately, including copyrighted music without proper licensing can result in takedowns and it denies musicians the funding they deserve. With an Epidemic Sound subscription, both problems are solved.
What Kind Of Music Should You Play On Your Stream
When it comes to deciding what kind of music to play on your stream you want to try and choose music that will bring energy to your stream and can be enjoyed by many people.
For this reason, electro dance music is really good to play on your streams. EDM was made to get people hyped and to bring energy to the people who listen to it. Playing it in between games is a great way to keep the positive vibes and energy flowing.
Imagine coming out of a sweet win and chilling in the lobbywith some awesome bangin EDM flowing. Dang, now thats hype!
Another thing working in EDMs favor is that most EDM has very few or no lyrics. This is good because if you are trying to have a clean stream you dont have to worry about anything vulgar or offensive being played over your stream.
EDM is also fairly neutral meaning it is liked, or a leasttolerated by most people. Some people dont like country music for example*raises hand slowly*, but most people dont mind listening to a few good beatsput together nicely.
One last awesome thing that EDM music has to offer is that a lot of it can be found for free. If you look on Tunepocket then you will find tons of EDM artists offering their music for free.
Thats not to say that if you are using Tunepocket that you wont find artists of other genres such as country or hip-hop who are offering their music for free, but quality EDM is without a doubt easier to find than any other genre of music.
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How To Determine Copyrights
There are three ways to tell if a song you want to use on your live stream is copyrighted or not :
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Why You Need Music In Your Live Streams
Music ups the production value of your live stream. Viewers pay more attention to broadcasts with music, and you can set a tone for your stream with music. If you want your viewers to feel a certain emotion while watching your stream, music is the easiest way to evoke it. An upbeat pop song can create excitement, a slow piano solo can invoke sadness, and some EDM will make your viewers feel ready to party.
When added at the right moments, music adds another layer to your broadcast. Even if you or your guests are extremely engaging speakers, the right music will put your live stream over the edge.
How can you use music during a live broadcast? Playing a jingle at the beginning of your stream as an intro helps cement your brand in viewers minds. Add music when you display your stream screen, before your broadcast starts, to set a mood for the rest of your stream. If you have guests, you can assign them a theme song for when they first appear.
Your live stream has endless opportunities for adding music. The only downside is ensuring you add music you have the right to play. Copyright infringement can get your stream shut down and get you in real trouble.
Where Would I Incorporate Music Into My Live Streams
There are dozens of ways to utilize music in your next stream, including:
- Adding a song over a holding slide or countdown video at the start of your broadcast
- Embedding a music bed an ambient instrumental track in the background as you speak to viewers, interview a guest, or in this case, perform without any words at all
- Playing a few seconds of a track as walk-on music when your guest arrives on screen
The possibilities here are truly endless. Think about your next stream and when there might be a lull that you can eliminate by adding a jolt of music.
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Where Can I Download Paid Music For My Live Streams
For every site that offers FREE music tracks, dozens more offer higher-quality songs that you can purchase the rights to. Pond5.com, AudioJungle.net, Artlist.io, BenSound.com, and EpidemicSound.com, to name a few. These sites offer thousands of music options which can be searched and sorted by nearly any category under the sun.
Prices range between one dollar and several hundred dollars depending on various factors like length, quality, artists popularity, etc.
So What Music Am I Allowed To Use
There are three main types of music that you can use in your live streams:
1. Public Domain Music
These are songs whose rights have either expired, were never defined in the first place, or whose authors specifically placed them into the public domain. In the United States, any song or musical work published in 1924 or earlier such as Happy Birthday is in the Public Domain. PD Songs are free for use by anyone for any purpose without any restrictions.
2. Royalty-Free Music
These are songs that you can purchase the rights to with a one-time payment, which grants you a set of terms to follow . These rights are typically non-exclusive, so other content creators who stumble upon the same track can use it.
Note: Not all Royalty-Free tracks require a purchase. Some generous musicians and composers offer their tracks for free online.
3. Original Music
This one is rather self-explanatory. You are most certainly allowed to use original music in live streams the one you have personally created or employed a musician to create.
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Why Is Music For My Live Stream Important
Besides setting an important tone for your broadcast, music also breaks the monotony of our virtual world. Now, Im not saying that you are a boring speaker by any means. But even the most engaging speakers can benefit from a change in pace during their streams.
Todays new normal finds us sitting in front of a screen. We enjoy listening to our co-workers, family members, and favorite influencers talk for hours on end. So any opportunity to pump the breaks on the blah blah and re-energize your viewers can engage them better.
What Are The Rules For Legally Using Music In My Live Streams
There are stringent laws and regulations which prevent us from playing copyrighted music during a live stream. Nearly every song that you have ever heard on the radio is intellectual property. Its owned and monetized by a specific entity perhaps a record label, producer, or an individual artist.
Just like you wouldnt be able to take an artists prized painting and hang it on the front door of your new gallery without permission, you are not able to utilize copyrighted music that is owned by another entity during your broadcast.
Platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, and Periscope use advanced technologies to scan your live-streams automatically. They can easily detect if you are using a song that you do not own the rights to. And once copyrighted content is detected, your stream can be ended dead in its tracks without any warning whatsoever.
Even if you do have permission from the artist or entity whose music you are using, its very likely that these platforms robo-scanners will still recognize your stream as copyright infringement.
Robots arent very forgiving.
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What Music Can I Play When I Stream On Twitch
There are three different categories of music that can be used in Twitch streams:
- Music owned by you. This is music that you create or produce yourself or music that you have played live and recorded. You should also make sure, before streaming, you have all the rights of reproducing this music, in case you have record label deals.
- Music licensed to you. This is by far the most common solution to avoid the issue. Epidemic Sound gives you access to a library of tracks and sound effects that you can use freely on Twitch, and YouTube if you want to upload your recorded streams. Once you have a subscription, you can safely play music without having to worry about DMCA takedowns.
- Music provided through Soundtrack by Twitch. With Soundtrack by Twitch you dont have to worry about takedowns on Twitch, but youll probably notice the scarcity in terms of the offering. This, together with being able to clear more channels on other platforms, usually causes streamers to use Epidemic Sound instead.
In case youre already using one of these three solutions, youre perfectly safe to continue streaming without worrying about copyright strikes. If not, youre probably best off subscribing to Epidemic Sound and adding your Twitch channel, and your YouTube channel if you want to upload your recorded streams. Since Epidemic Sound owns all the rights to their music and can provide a direct license, youll never have to worry about copyright claims again.
Can I Stream Music
It is a bit interesting that most people do not know this, but no, you cannot stream music-based content. Playing games with a music focus such as Just Dance, Rock Band or osu! violates Twitchs guidelines. Twitchs Community Guidelines explicitly state that the following types of content are forbidden on the platform:
- Radio-Style Music Listening Shows
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Are You Allowed To Play Music On Twitch
Twitch and music. It can be summarized in one word confusing. The majority of streamers that play music in their streams do so with little regard for copyright law. However, Twitch recently issued several DMCA takedowns and effectively prevented streamers from using the platform if they continue playing music they dont have the rights to.
Its not uncommon to find streamers playing todays top hits or yesterdays classics. Streamers sometimes also take song requests, giving their audience control of the music. In the past, the music industry hasnt taken action but thats changing. Just last year, many popular streamers were hit with 24-hour bans on the platform for playing copyrighted music. So what are the rules? The punishments? And what can you do to protect yourself?
What were seeing right now, not only on Twitch but on most streaming platforms, is an increased eagerness to respect copyright laws. People realize that creators intellectual property needs to be prioritized, for obvious reasons. However, listening to your moral compass does not mean you cant or shouldnt play music in your streams. You are allowed to play music on Twitch as long as you follow the rules. Lets get into it.
Should I Play Music On My Stream
Playing music during games depends on the game that you stream. However, regardless of the game, all streamers should play music in between games or when there is down in their stream. Playing music throughout the stream helps keep the energy levels high and helps keep the viewers engaged.
Now as was mentioned, streaming during your game play really depends on the game you play.
For example, if you like to stream shooter games then it does not make sense to play music while you are playing. Think of Fortnite if you are listening to some banging trap music while you are playing then it will be difficult to hear enemy footsteps or opponents who are shooting at you. Not being able to hear those things can really effect your game play.
Not only could listening to the music while you streameffect your game play, but it could effect how engaged your viewers are inwatching you play. Staying with the Fortnite example, your viewers want to hearthings around you as well. Playing music could really mess up the viewingexperience and this goes for most shooting games.
Now other games that actually do really well with music inthe background are sporting games. Games like Madden or NBA 2K are obviously not as action packed as ashooting game and thats why the music helps make it more engaging for viewers,especially when there are lulls in the game.
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Twitch Music Rules: Are You Allowed To Play Music On Twitch
The DMCA takedowns that characterized the second half of 2020 have created some serious confusion regarding which music thats safe to use on Twitch. Lets dive into what Twitch says about the topic and go into depth on how to use music safely in your streams.
In October 2020, Twitch deleted a lot of content violating music copyright laws, following a wave of DMCA takedown requests. As Twitch uses a three-strike policy for its users if you get three strikes, youre banned streamers were not happy about the news.
So, how do you steer clear from having your potential bread and butter deleted? We’ll tell you all about it in this blog post.
Where Can I Download Free Music For My Live Streams
There are countless online sources to download public domain and free royalty-free music tracks for your next live stream.
One of the fastest-growing collections for this is YouTubes Audio Library. It contains thousands of free tracks that can be sorted by mood, genre, and artist.
FreePD.com is another good source of free public domain music, albeit a smaller selection than YouTube offers.
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How Do Streamers Get Away With Playing Copyrighted Music
To play copyrighted music on your stream, without consent of the artist or their recording company, is illegal.
Streamers who do play copyrighted music are indeed doing so illegally however, when the music is played during a live stream it is difficult for Twitch and other streaming platforms to detect it and punish these streamers. For this reason, many who play copyrighted music during their live streams often do so free of consequences while they are live.
However, this does not mean that these streamers go unpunished, especially lately with all of the DMCA claims. If you have copyright music playing on your live streams, your VODS or on your Twitch clips it will only be a matter of time before these VODS and videos are either muted or removed from your channel and you are given a DMCA claim.
Playing live copyright music on your streams also puts you at risk of having your Twitch account shut down. Not good!
But dont worry! There is a way that you can play great music on your streams that is royalty free so you wont have to worry about getting in any trouble with Twitch.
In order to play great music on stream, streamers use websites such as Tunepocketto find songs and sound effects that they can use legally and royalty free. For a small fee, these songs can be downloaded and used on things such as Twitch streams and Youtube videos to help enhance the quality of your content.
And as you have seen lately, DMCA claims are becoming more and more common.
I’ve Selected My Music For My Live Stream Now What
With thousands of options on the web, selecting the right track can be a time-consuming part of your musical journey.
Now you have downloaded your tracks and know where you are planning to incorporate them during your stream. What next? Well, here are a few technical tips to help you make the most of your music integration:
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