The Pokimane DMCA Twitch ban occurred while streaming episodes from Avatar: The Last Airbender
Is the recent Pokimane DMCA Twitch ban putting a stop to the new Twitch TV show meta? Pokimane, one of the most well-known game streamers, was banned from the platform on Friday night after streaming the animated series Avatar: The Last Airbender. Although temporary, this ban sheds a new light on how the streaming platform enforces its rules.
Imane “Pokimane” Anys currently has over 8.5 million followers and had about 25,000 concurrent viewers when Twitch dropped the hammer while she watched the Nickelodeon TV show Avatar: The Last Airbender for just the first time. Pokimane was alleged to have received a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) ban midway through the stream, terminating the broadcast.
The Pokimane DMCA Twitch ban was Anys’ first ever ban. Pokimane is not much of a controversial streamer, though she has gone through some hardships the past few years. In comparison to other well-known Twitch streamers, her content is considered more on the friendly side, away from toxicity or clout-chasing. So why did this ban even happen in the first place?
Twitch streamers like to play with fire. They’re not firebenders (pun slightly intended) but they like to play with the gray area of what is allowed or not allowed on Twitch. A ban is not to be taken lightly, but whenever there is a new strategy to increase viewer rate, streamers will hop onto it quickly even if it can be troublesome. As you may know in recent times, Twitch has had their shares of ASMR, hot tub, and now, TV show streams. It’s the new meta.
Large corporations are wary of random people exposing their copyrighted material to tens of thousands of people for free, so it’s not surprising that even a huge streamer like Pokimane would face legal repercussions for streaming a cartoon, hence the 48-hour Pokimane DMCA Twitch ban. Going forward, big streamers are likely to become hesitant to stream TV or film as it could result in a DMCA strike against their channel. It might also result in permanent bans for small streamers who don’t have the financial or political leverage to help themselves against the streaming platform giant.
In perspective, all game streaming uses protected content. The difference is that game developers want their games to be streamed in order to gain interest or improve sales. This is somewhat new territory for the TV and film industries. As the Twitch platform and its community grows, the Pokimane DMCA Twitch ban seems more like a preemptive strike than anything else. It signals the notion that streamers can continue to have their fun while treading carefully.