The Shady Side of Twitch

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In the United States' charged political environment, any action taken towards political speech on either side is likely to draw attention. That's what happened to Twitch when it banned multiple political streamers for rebroadcasting and commenting on a Democratic debate in 2020.





About an hour into a high profile debate between the Democratic nominees for president, Twitch began banning streamers showing the debate. This including podcast hosts Chapo Trapo House, speedrunner Trihex and political analyst David Pakman. The streams shut down when Twitch received a DMCA copyright notice from Praxis Political Legal, apparently representing CBS. Shortly after that notice arrived, however, the website for Praxis Political Legal disappeared. The organization, it soon became clear, was fake. CBS had served no copyright claims against Twitch or the streamers, who were quickly reinstated.



This wasn't the first time that Twitch had responded to users streaming a debate. In 2019, at an earlier Democratic debate leading up to the 2020 election, Time Warner handed over a very real DMCA notice to Twitch. Twitch halted the casts of several prominent political streamers, and each received a suspension.































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