Streamlabs has promised to remove its “OBS” streaming software from the name of Streamlabs OBS as a result of a backlash from streamers and the open source streaming platform OBS Studio. OBS Studio says it has asked Streamlabs not to use its name, which means “Open Broadcaster Software,” just to get the company to use it. Streamlabs has also been accused of copying another broadcast software website, and all the drama has been condensed on Twitter.
The controversy began when Lightstream, another maker of streaming apps, tweeted screenshots of its website next to Streamlabs and said, “Hey, can I copy your homework?” suggests that Streamlabs is copying Lightstream. Stu Grubbs, CEO of Lightstream, retweeted the image later, which states: “The @streamlabs team should be ashamed. I’m not happy enough to ride @OBSProject ‘s hard work.
We often encounter confused users and even businesses that don’t understand the difference between the two apps.
Support volunteers sometimes encounter angry users who demand compensation. We have interacted with several companies that did not know that our applications were separate.
– OBS (@OBSProject) November 17, 2021
Following Grubbs ’tweet, OBS took action – in its response to Grubbs, OBS claims that the name Streamlabs has proven problematic for the brand. OBS says customers and other companies have confused OBS and Streamlabs because of the abbreviation “OBS” that Streamlabs associates with its name.
OBS also claims that Streamlabs contacted it when the service was first launched and asked if it could use “OBS” in its name. OBS says it “kindly asked them not to do it,” but Streamlabs still used the name anyway. “We’ve been trying to figure this out in private, and they’ve been cooperative at every turn,” the OBS tweet says. OBS acknowledges that Streamlabs did everything right legally, but instead “repeatedly ignored the spirit of open source and giving back.”
streamlabs will better solve this whole chain of problems or ask them to take my face off the platform and use another donation service. https://t.co/jfJoxIvc0y
– imane (@imane) November 17, 2021
Popular streamers quickly grabbed the drama. Pokimane, one of Twitch’s best-known figures, threatened to stop representing and using the platform if Streamlabs didn’t resolve the issue.
Streamlabs responded to the allegations later in a tweet and announced it would take immediate action to remove “OBS” from its product name. It also states that “Streamlabs OBS is built on the open source OBS platform” and that its own platform is also open source. I think this just seems like Streamlabs’ weak rationale for using the name.
Streamlabs probably had no choice but to change its name, especially as the Twitch streamer of more than 8 million followers threatens to stop representing the service. The whole drama makes you wonder if Streamlabs intentionally put OBS in its name to attract people to its service. After all, everyone in the world of streaming knows OBS.