Quick answer – No, you cannot play any type of copyrighted music on your twitch streams. If you play copyrighted music you will be breaking the TOS that you agreed to. Twitch also states that anyone that is considered “repeat infringers” will be terminated without notice.
You can read more about Twitch’s DMCA guidelines here.
When you are using music on your channel you need to make sure you have a full understanding of the twitch music rules. Most Twitch streamers have music playing in the background while they transition into a new game or in-between matches, depending on their games.
A lot of creators will play music during while live streaming to break the silence. Others will use music if the song enhances what they are doing, just like you see and hear in movies. Viewers will likely stay on your stream if they don’t hear silence, so it’s also a great way to get more viewers on Twitch.
If streamers are doing a giveaway on twitch, they will usually play music while people are signed up to win.
What is Copyrighted Music
Music copyright designates legal ownership of a musical composition or sound recording. This ownership includes exclusive rights to redistribute and reproduce the work, as well as licensing rights that enable the copyright holder to earn royalties.
Because of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), it is actually breaking the law. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 was signed by President Clinton. There are five titles to the law that consist of
- WIPO Copyright and Performances and Phonograms Treaties Implementation Act of 1998
- Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act
- Computer Maintenance Competition Assurance Act
- Miscellaneous provisions
- Vessel Hull Design Protection Act
If you do want to read more, you can find more information here.
But that’s enough history about the DMCA. You just need to understand what copyrighted music is and where you find music that is not copyrighted. Here is a link to Twitch’s copyright rules.
You have other options to play music!
You have other options than streaming copyrighted music. There is even live twitch streams that only play DMCA free music. For example, Monstercat is a twitch channel that is always playing music that you can use on your live streams. You are allowed to play this channel for your stream.
If you record and create your own music content then this will not be an issue for you. As long as you have the full licensed for the audio you are using for your broadcasts.
There are other options too, but some of them can get expensive.
Twitch has also released Soundtracks by Twitch in late 2020.
You don’t have to worry about using this music at all, as it’s created by Twitch. Music from Soundtrack is separated into its own audio channel so you can play music on stream without worrying about your archives being muted or receiving strikes against your Twitch channel or YouTube channel.
Most Twitch streamers have usually have a library of tracks saved so they can just start playing music on twitch without worry.