Report: YouTube to Buy Twitch For $1 Billion - Update

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Report: YouTube to Buy Twitch For $1 Billion - Update

twitch logo

Variety reports that the all-cash offer is expected to be announced imminently.

Update 2: The Wall Street Journal has stated that Twitch and YouTube are in "early talks" about a possible acquisition - a far cry from the "imminent" announcement Variety initially reported.

Source: Wall Street Journal

Update: Twitch has replied to our request with the bog standard "we don't comment on rumors," PR reply. Still waiting on a response from YouTube.

Original Story: According to some of Variety's "sources close to the pact," popular video streaming conglomerate YouTube has just done a deal to purchase Twitch.tv - the live streaming service popular with video gamers - for a crazy $1 billion dollars.

YouTube and Twitch are expected to announce the all-cash offer "imminently," sources said, and if true, would make for the most significant acquisition in the history of YouTube. It's certainly a very crazy amount of money, but given that Twitch is number one in its field, and has been steadily growing over the years with crazy social experiments like Twitch Plays Pokemon, it seems fair.

Although, that may be more of a detriment than a positive, according to the source. Apparently, Google's lawyers are ready for a challenge from the Justice Department on the grounds of competition issues, given the fact that both services are already number one in their respective fields.

YouTube was acquired by Google back in 2006, and the impending acquisition comes after longtime Google ad exec Susan Wojcicki was named CEO of the video streaming service earlier this year.

YouTube had been experimenting with it's own live streaming options, so it doesn't come as a surprise that they would opt to simply buy the most popular option rather than further develop their own alternative (anyone remember Google video?).

We've reached out to YouTube and Twitch for comment.

Source: Variety

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Great, even less alternatives to Youtube's insane copyright enforcement policies.

No. Seriously, fuck no. What is possibly Twitch's biggest selling point right now to both creators and audiences is that it does not have to deal with Youtube's horribly broken "shoot first, ask questions later"-style copyright system where people have to fear false ContentID claims, getting videos easily removed by anyone with a keyboard (regardless of if the claimant actually owns the IP or not), and having to fight a difficult uphill battle to get everything restored afterwards. Youtube owning it would be one of the worst things that could happen to Twitch's userbase.

Monopoly red alert to be honest, youtube is a beast already. And yes screw off with youtube's copyright BS, all of this stinks and I hope it falls through.

Starting to be about time to chop up Google into different little pieces and bring the regulation hammer down on preventing sales like this.

This is how the world ends, not with a bang but a Kappa.

image

I suppose there's still a bang.

Anyway,if it's true, I suppose this is a good payday for Twitch, and good for YouTube, since it means they don't really have to work to improve their own stuff, but I can't see this being anything but bad for users, in the main. Thinking ContentID, Google Plus integration, all that fucking annoying shit that people went to Twitch to get away from.

I thought people moved to Twitch precisely to get away from Youtube's draconian policies. If so, this sucks for them.

Youtube is already borderline unuseable. Twitch is where people go to AVOID YouTube. It is seen by many as the best place to engage with an audience without fear of the systems Youtube has put in place. No content creators like using you-tube anymore, they fear it but it is so dominant they have to grudgingly use it.

If things do start going the way of youtube in terms of policy (I know the RIAA are still PARANOID about streaming) or even if the new Twitch adopts youtube or Google branding people will leave in droves.

Where the hell can we go to escape Google now? They are horrible, i think most people have a negative opinion of them at this point, but they are simply too large to be accountable or to get around.

This is the worst thing possible, horribly buggy Twitch streaming, combined with dumb Youtube content policies.

Shame there's no real alternative for either streaming or video hosting :(

And with the imminent death of net neutrality, the chances that somebody else will come forth and establish a new independent streaming service are slim to none.
But it's hard to say no to a billion dollars. I'd probably sell out too.

Valve might be able to do something for Steam and save the PC gamers once more.

Twitch is becoming a serious threat to Youtube's consumer base, and google knows it. Instead of trying to improve youtube to compete better with Twitch, they instead just throw money at it and assimilate it into their broken ass system.

This is how a monopoly starts.

God...god dammit. No. Just...just no. In fact, can we have the supreme court check this one out? I mean seriously, at this point, is it not technically a monopoly on live streaming sites? How many others are out there? I know there's probably something I'm missing, but I'm just...god dammit.

For dear god don't let this happen. This would be the worst thing to ever happen for Streamers because of YouTube's bullshit copyright laws. I really hope this doesn't happen.

Are we running into a tech bubble again?

I mean, big companies are suddenly acquiring smaller ones for enormous (inflated) sums of money, for seemingly no reason beyond wanting to 'enter markets'. Where's the return on the investment going to come from? Are they all expecting explosive growth for the next five years or something?

I feel like I'm in 1998 again...

"Do no evil" my ass, Google. That motto no longer applies to you no more. This is just another nail in your coffin.

Apparently, Google decided there was no way to screw YouTube up further and decided to try and ruin another service.

I can so see it now, Twitch banning streamers for playing music without copyright permission. A lot of twitch streamers play music on their streams, some even have request lists from their viewers. If Youtube/Google enforces the same retarded DMCA mechanisms on Twitch, goodbye twitch.

As much as I like using Youtube, (I'm simply a viewer, so I don't really worry about the way Youtube handles copyright), I can't really say I agree with this.

fix-the-spade:
Are we running into a tech bubble again?

I mean, big companies are suddenly acquiring smaller ones for enormous (inflated) sums of money, for seemingly no reason beyond wanting to 'enter markets'. Where's the return on the investment going to come from? Are they all expecting explosive growth for the next five years or something?

I feel like I'm in 1998 again...

What exactly happened in 98? I was pretty small at the time, so I didn't pay attention to that stuff.

Just curious. :P

fix-the-spade:
Are we running into a tech bubble again?

I mean, big companies are suddenly acquiring smaller ones for enormous (inflated) sums of money, for seemingly no reason beyond wanting to 'enter markets'. Where's the return on the investment going to come from? Are they all expecting explosive growth for the next five years or something?

I feel like I'm in 1998 again...

Companies with only a single successful but unsubstantial product like King.com are also entering public trading for billions. I'd say we are reaching the height of a tech bubble. Tech stocks are already a no-go for some plugged in investors and the toxicity in a few companies is dragging down the entire sector. All it takes is a single big, or even medium, tank and the whole thing could go south.

What will all that stock be worth then?

ill be hilarious to see every single stream being struck down with copyright claims

oh, and prepare for a progressively worse service just like youtube

We are Google. Your lawyers will cease and you will submit to assimilation or be destroyed. Your uniqueness will be added to our own. Resistance is futile.

scorptatious:
As much as I like using Youtube, (I'm simply a viewer, so I don't really worry about the way Youtube handles copyright), I can't really say I agree with this.

fix-the-spade:
Are we running into a tech bubble again?

I mean, big companies are suddenly acquiring smaller ones for enormous (inflated) sums of money, for seemingly no reason beyond wanting to 'enter markets'. Where's the return on the investment going to come from? Are they all expecting explosive growth for the next five years or something?

I feel like I'm in 1998 again...

What exactly happened in 98? I was pretty small at the time, so I didn't pay attention to that stuff.

Just curious. :P

The Dot-Com bubble.

A part of me hopes they'll just acquire Twitch and have it run independently, including user policies. Another part of me knows this will not likely happen.

Let's see if the DoJ decides to intervene.

Good news for Google, bad news for us. But for $1bill I'd sell them anything they wanted.

I don't use Twitch but understand how popular it is among the community. It makes sense that YT would want to acquire it since it is the market leader and a proven platform that would benefit YT, but sad since the monopoly will grow and as others have pointed out, the draconian policies on YT, even flagging Miracle of Sound for HIS OWN VIDEO, will kill the service. Companies won on YT and can shut down anyone at any time (though I still maintain they hold NO claim whatsoever to Let's Play videos) and those same policies will absolutely make their way across to Twitch too, giving companies the ability to challenge anything they wish.

PLEASE DON'T.

OH GOD PLEASE.

I don't use Twitch that often, but when I do, I am immeasurably glad that I don't have to link a social media account to it or observe the effects of rampant bullshit copyright flagging. It'd be hard to refuse $1bn, but if it's true, I really hope they do.

Honestly what is youtube thinking? It's not like youtube can't stream, your just pissing away your money, It's not like twitch owns the people that broadcast on twitch. I can see people running to ustream or something else already if it goes bad.

Ruh roh. The only appropriate reaction, in my mind:

Eve Charm:
Honestly what is youtube thinking? It's not like youtube can't stream, your just pissing away your money, It's not like twitch owns the people that broadcast on twitch. I can see people running to ustream or something else already if it goes bad.

It's the basic corporate thinking nowadays, why waste money improving your own service when you can just buyout an already successful one and then use that one instead. Facebook is the worst offender of this when they bought a lone app for $19 billion dollars, and honestly like how The Gentleman linked above, it's either gonna be Google or Facebook that cause another Dotcom bubble burst scenario like we had back in in the early 2000s. Seriously though, YouTube shouldn't be spending this money in the first place and what they should be doing is improving their own streaming services, as well as improving their terrible copyright management that caused people to leave YouTube in the first place because of how bullshit it is. If this goes through, there goes streaming Nintendo games... >.>

Eve Charm:
Honestly what is youtube thinking? It's not like youtube can't stream, your just pissing away your money, It's not like twitch owns the people that broadcast on twitch. I can see people running to ustream or something else already if it goes bad.

Youtube doesn't want competition so they buy Twitch and get in on all of that sweet, sweet console gaming revenue that Twitch has now.

Youtube might be able to stream yes but Google had Google videos and then bought Youtube instead because it was terrible. This is essentially the same thing. Google has a sub par service so they buy out the leading competitor.

By saying "we don't comment on rumors" they pretty much confirmed that the rumor is true. If the rumor isn't true, then they only need to say one word when asked, "no". Making vague PR statements does nothing but confirm people's suspicions.

Google is really going all out trying to make sure they either eliminate or purchase all their competition.

RIP Twitch. You shall be missed.

Can't the owners of Twitch simply say "no"?

There has to be some kind of organization that stops monopolies from becoming too crazy. Google owns enough stuff.

Soviet Heavy:
I thought people moved to Twitch precisely to get away from Youtube's draconian policies. If so, this sucks for them.

Nah, it more has to do with YouTube's Streaming system being absolutely garbage. You can't just upload videos to Twitch so a lot of YouTube's abhorrent policies don't apply.

OP: This could go either way. I for one think that this is a sign that companies like Nintendo and Sega aren't going to be able to shit on gaming based YouTube channels with BS copyright claims for much longer. Not with Twitch's gaming focus.

Just in time for Google to capitalize on the MOBA streaming market.

RIP Twitch.

Glaice:
"Do no evil" my ass, Google. That motto no longer applies to you no more. This is just another nail in your coffin.

They might as well remove the 'no' part entirely. It'll be much more accurate for one.

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