So Are Google (YouTube) and Twitch in Acquisition Talks?

Subject: General Tech | May 19, 2014 - 02:36 AM |
Tagged: twitch.tv, youtube

Well... crap. It looks like the YouTube arm of Google is in talks to purchase Twitch. Variety, while not my first choice of source for these issues, claims that the deal is basically done, excluding regulatory involvement, and valued at $1 billion USD in cash. These details are apparently disputed, however, by sources which claim that a deal is in progress but is no-where near the stage that Variety reports.

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Twitchy hands...

For us, this will probably suck. It seems like Twitch is much easier to deal with than YouTube when it comes to copyright issues, at least from my observation point. Beyond that, it is doubtful that Google will leave the service as an independent entity. It would not surprise me if Google transitions existing Twitch streaming contracts to YouTube Live and slowly dissolves what is left.

Speaking of what is left, no source seems to be clear on whether this deal is for all of Twitch Interactive, including Justin.tv. The company was rebranded just recently, mid-February of this year, to "Twitch Interactive". Previously, it was known as "Justin.tv", after its older sibling website.

What does our audience think? Can any good come from this?

Source: Kotaku
May 19, 2014 | 06:07 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Holy Scroogle! Twitch too?

May 19, 2014 | 07:51 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Cue the Pack Man sounds, as the little techs get gobbled up by the big Ad Boob Tubers, as our entire computing experience from PCs on down, gets sponsored. ever wonder why there are almost no tablets running a full linux, at least for the people that need the Full Linux for creation, and not consumption. The entire Internet has been owned and turned into a small group of fiefdoms, ruled over by the big cable overlords, as the serfs(users) are charged coming and going on the slow lane. The Tablet industry is beholden to the suppliers of the devices' OSs, and the Ad driven revenue model, that only supports more consumption and little control over the hardware. Android is not the Linux kernel's friend, or a friend the open source software community. Time for title 2 of the communications act, and an act that makes any computing device (PC,Laptop,Tablet,Phone) have an mandated OS choice, and an end to locked down hardware, forever bound to one OS/OS ecosystem!

May 19, 2014 | 09:50 AM - Posted by Derek R. (not verified)

This news sucks. As we turn off our TVs to turn away from the cable monopoly, we navigate our browser to the Google online monopoly. I don't like the cable company any more than I like that Google might be snatching up a company like Twitch.

May 19, 2014 | 01:06 PM - Posted by SteeloYangster

I actually like this move. I am already in the google eco-system and like being here. This can only benefit me by better integrating Twitch into the Google system. Besides there are a few other video streaming services such as Ustream and hitbox.tv that compete with twitch that people can use as well. I think the Google+ integration is what is turning people off on this possible buyout. I think Google+ is extremely un-intuitive but it's also in limbo at the moment with the head of Google+ leaving. Am I the only one who doesn't mind this?

May 19, 2014 | 08:13 PM - Posted by Mark Strong

What I would have you consider is what would happen if google applied the same rule set they have for youtube to twitch? The problem comes from the level of litigation is now being processed based upon content on youtube.

For the first couple months the policies will remain the same but over time your going to see policy changes to bring twitch in line with the Google rule book.

May 20, 2014 | 03:02 PM - Posted by SteeloYangster

Wow, I think this is a strong argument against Google/Youtube purchasing twitch because of the takedown notices in regards to video game content. I can see why this would hurt Twitch as a content streaming provider. Good point Mark Strong! BTW I really liked your performance in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.

May 20, 2014 | 10:41 PM - Posted by Mark Strong

No relation. Sadly my name is about as common as John Smith now. Although it makes it funny to watch people search my name and get back random results.

May 20, 2014 | 08:39 AM - Posted by zicoz (not verified)

Sure there are alternatives, but that doesn't matter as long as your favorites are streaming on Twitch. Twitch is to video game streaming what YouTube is to videos, which is why this buyout is bad.

And it's made even worse by the lack of good alternatives.

Hitbox - Has ties to Own3d.tv which is bad
Ustream - Isn't targeted at gamers
Azubu - Closed down and is also a dirty company
MLG.tv - Closed down
Hashd.TV - Has been offline for months

May 20, 2014 | 03:05 PM - Posted by SteeloYangster

I think if there is a big enough of a backlash we could see those gamers move to other services and become more game oriented. I agree that Twitch is definitely the place to watch and spectate video game events. I'm not familiar with the controversy over Own3d.tv? Could you explain? Or, I'll just go google it like a big boy.

May 20, 2014 | 10:39 PM - Posted by Mark Strong

Just search for Own3d.tv pay scandal, to narrow the search include the author name Richard Lewis (E-sports journalist/historian). Essentially they left people high and dry with not having fulfilled contractual obligations. The assets of the company were sold off, including the name of the company. So the people who own the current iteration of the company have nothing to do with the original but the new money is not exactly clean. I would direct you to an e-sports discussion show on youtube called "Unfiltered" by the creator ChanmanV.

May 19, 2014 | 08:02 PM - Posted by Mark Strong

What causes me concern in regard to this issue is the lack of competition to be had in the marketplace. What produces innovation is proper competition. But instead of competing we now have the larger, older company, purchasing up the smaller / younger company. If there was an actual legitimate competitor to take twitch's place I wouldn't be making this argument. But the fact is that the only platform that was large enough to force youtube to innovate was twitch and with this deal you can forget that.

This falls under the same category for me as, for example, intel purchasing AMD. We need a service to take up the mantle of challenging the establishment once again and to drive innovation from the lethargic old company.

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