Fri. Jan 21st, 2022

Pokimane and Matt Heafy pose with Streamlabs

Picture: Streamlabs

Yesterday, the Twitter account of live streaming software Lightstream accused rival streaming software maker Streamlabs of stealing marketing copy from their website. After Lightstream tweeted about how Streamlabs’ website text was modeled on its own, other companies began to confirm their own negative experiences with Streamlabs. Among them were the creators of OBS, a widespread streaming application that accused Streamlabs of using the name “OBS” in its own release, Streamlabs OBS, without permission. Earlier today, Streamlabs announced that it would be to remove “OBS” from “Streamlabs OBS” (SLOBS).

Streamlabs OBS is a cloud-based livestreaming software built up of the open source OBS code. Although the basic software is free, it also offers paid services. It has entered into a partnership with big names in the streaming field, including Rich and the popular streamer Pokimane. According to OBS, an open source streaming software project, Streamlabs reached out to ask if they could use the name OBS. OBS says that the company after asking Streamlabs not to do so immediately submitted a trademark to Streamlabs NOTE. As a result, many people began to confuse Streamlabs OBS with the original OBS. Some in the gaming environment even had no idea that the companies had no affiliation with each other.

Many streamers and members of the gaming community have encouraged users to switch from Streamlabs to other streaming services such as OBS. However, several Streamlabs users also have pointed out that the Streamlabs software uses interface designs that make it harder (or more recently, apparently impossible) for users to cancel their paid services.

Shortly before Streamlabs announced its intention to change its name, the company was under great public scrutiny from streaming community members such as Imane Anys (Pokimane), Hasan Piker, Brandon Stennis (iAmBrandon) and Dylan Zaner (8bitdylan). Even the former CIA whistleblower Edward Snowden weighed in to express dissatisfaction with Streamlabs’ business practices.

Streamlabs does not deny the public claims about the company. At the end of his name change tweet, the company stated: “We take responsibility for our actions and will support society.”

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