Leading music rights holders and artists have challenged Jeff Bezos for showing “wilful blindness” to the use of unlicensed songs on the streaming platform Twitch, which is owned by Amazon.
The platform has become a popular space for music livestreams since the coronavirus lockdown began, prompting artists and their labels to tackle Amazon over their music licensing policies.
As the FT reports, the legal battle began in June when rights holders issued “takedown notices” against Twitch, with over 2500 claims being filed for the use of unlicensed music in the background of gaming streams and recording live streams.
Since then, the Artists Rights Alliance has placed direct pressure on Bezos and will now send an open letter urging him to go beyond “the minimal and inadequate” efforts made by Twitch.
They have also taken issue with Twitch’s lack of clear licensing deals, compared to Amazon Music’s two-tier approach.
“As Twitch uses music to grow its audience and shape its brand, the company owes creators more than the wilful blindness and vague platitudes you offered,” the letter states.
In June, a takedown notice saw songs such as ‘Cake By the Ocean’ by DNCE and ‘7 Rings’ by Ariana Grande being removed from the platform.
Amazon initially purchased Twitch for $970 million (£742.65 million) in 2014.