Yesterday, one developer's comments on streamers stirred up a frenzy on Twitter. Now, Google is separating itself from the idea that streamers should pay to broadcast themselves playing a game.
Takedowns, issued under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (or DMCA), have been sweeping Twitch this week.Alex Hutchinson, Creative Director at Stadia's Games and Entertainment studio in Montreal, said on Twitter yesterday that streamers worried about getting their content pulled due to music should be "more worried by the fact that they're streaming games they didn't pay for as well."
"The real truth is the streamers should be paying the developers and publishers of the games they stream," said Hutchinson. "They should be buying a license like any real business and paying for the content they use."
For fairly predictable reasons, this didn't sit well with Twitch streamers, Twitch viewers, and really a lot of people in the industry. As of this writing, the tweet sits at 17,000 quote retweets, a titanic ratio. Many people, including several notable Twitch streamers and game developers, disputed the take.
In a statement to 9to5Google, Google distanced itself from the tweet. "The recent tweets by Alex Hutchinson, creative director at the Montreal Studio of Stadia Games and Entertainment, do not reflect those of Stadia, YouTube, or Google."
Also, YouTube's Global Head of Gaming Ryan Watt tweeted out a statement. "We believe that Publishers and Creators have a wonderful symbiotic relationship that has allowed a thriving ecosystem to be created," Wyatt says. "One that has mutually benefited everyone! [YouTube] is focused on creating value for Creators, Publishers, and Users. All ships rise when we work together."
Hutchinson came over to Google as part of Typhoon Studios, when the Journey to the Savage Planet developer was acquired by Google. Previously, he worked at Ubisoft Montreal on games like Far Cry 4 and Assassin's Creed 3. He hasn't posted any new tweets or statements since yesterday, as of this publication.