臺灣的法規跟得上直播產業發展嗎? Can Taiwan's Laws keep up with the developments of the Live Stream Industry?

2016年初,由於臉書全面開放人人都能使用直播功能,使得「直播」開始普及化,不再只是少數領域人士(如遊戲產業)才熟知的名詞。然而直播並不是這兩年才有的產業,早在5年前(即2011年),就已經出現直播平台Twitch。Twitch的直播內容以遊戲為主,各實況主透過直播遊戲畫面的方式與觀眾互動,發展至今成為全球最熱門的直播平台。由於直播觀眾族群越來越多,近年來市場上出現了各種以直播功能為主打的軟體或網站。然而因為直播的「即時性」與「互動性」,有不少直播主為了爭取觀眾持續觀看與「打賞」,頻頻直播性行為、隱私部位、吸毒、飆車,甚至吞安眠藥、割腕等自殺畫面,形成直播產業的不良風氣。

 

透過直播的「即時性」,現在的臺灣民眾只要透過直播平台,馬上可以搖身一變成為「準電視臺臺主」。人們可以隨時使用直播平台來散布自己想要被公眾收視收聽的視訊,卻不必接受與電視業者相等的法律管制。臺灣廣播電視法規定:「廣播、電視事業應經主管機關許可,並發給廣播、電視執照,始得營運。」、「廣播或電視執照,有效期間為九年。」、「廣播、電視事業之停播,股權之轉讓,變更名稱或負責人,應經主管機關許可。」亦即,經營電視臺必須取得政府有限期間的許可,政府必須知悉電視臺的所有人或負責人身份。同法又規定:「廣播、電視節目內容,不得有下列情形之一:一、違反法律強制或禁止規定。二、妨害兒童或少年身心健康。三、妨害公共秩序或善良風俗。」、「廣播、電視事業違反本法規定者,視情節輕重,由主管機關予以左列處分:一、警告。二、罰鍰。三、停播。四、吊銷執照。」亦即,政府可以藉由停播或吊銷執照等手段,避免電視臺播出違反公序良俗的內容。然而,目前臺灣法規不要求直播主必須實名申請許可,而政府也基於「產業自律」的觀念,對於直播產業管制的態度較為消極,造成臺灣有「人手一個(無規範限制的)電視臺」的隱憂。

 

相較之下,大陸政府已意識到直播具有公眾媒體的特質,對於直播產業的管制逐步趨向積極。今年的7月1日,大陸文化部公布了《關於加強網路表演管理工作的通知》,非但表示「對網路表演市場全面實施”雙隨機一公開”,定期開展隨機抽查」,將偶發性的檢查轉變為常態模式,更進一步公告「表演者對其開展的網路表演承擔直接責任」,首次明確了直播主自身的責任。接著在7月12日,文化部一舉公布了16881名違規表演者的查處結果。大陸國家新聞出版廣電總局更在9月公布了《關於加強網路視聽節目直播服務管理有關問題的通知》,該通知中強調直播應持有「許可證」,否則不論機構或個人均不得直播。也就是說,大量「網紅」即日起也必須取得直播許可證,才能夠直播。

 

「依靠違法違規內容營利畢竟不是長久之計」,大陸直播平台業者由於政府的加強監管,已開始探索產業間良性競爭的模式。直播產業同時是臺灣的新興產業,未來臺灣政府如何監管,或仍舊容留產業自律,也是民間關心的議題。華通國際法律事務所未來將不定期更新最精華的相關訊息,讓讀者以最有效率的方式吸收重要資訊。

 

直播產業是電競生態圈的一環。華通長期耕耘電競領域,與臺灣電競界的重點企業與人物保有密切與友好的合作關係,充分掌握臺灣電競發展最新趨勢,因此華通合夥律師受電競產業界邀請,於電競產業協會擔任要職。基於對電競產業面的深入了解,以及協助新興產業的豐富經驗,華通服務的電競領域客戶已涵蓋臺灣當地最知名具代表性的電競企業,為企業營運提供最符合需要的法律保障。若您希望深入了解電競相關議題,或有相關服務需求,歡迎與華通聯繫。

 

In early 2016, Facebook expanded its live video function to all its users that immediately popularized the use of “livestream” videos.  This used to be a specialized term that only few were familiar with, such as those engaged in the gaming and eSports industry.  However, livestream is hardly a new creation from the past two years, as it has been around since 2011 with the birth of the livestreaming video platform, “Twitch”.  As one of the world’s most popular live platform, the site primarily focuses on video gaming that allows gamers to include playthroughs of video games to interact with their audiences.   The market has since responded to the growth of live audiences by releasing a range of software and websites that cater to livestreaming functions.  Unfortunately, the “immediacy” and “interactivity” of livestream videos have also led to various harmful and undesirable social conducts and atmosphere.  These include broadcasts of sexual acts; indecent parts; drugs; racing; and even acts of attempted suicide posted for the sole purpose of gaining more viewers and receiving “gifts”.

 

The “instantaneity” of livestreams has allowed regular Taiwanese people to transform themselves into quasi-television owners with the use of live platforms.  Individuals can now utilize broadcast platforms at any time to spread content they want the public viewers to receive without subjecting themselves to the same laws and regulations that television carriers and the likes must abide to.  The Radio and Television Law of Taiwan stipulates that "broadcasting and television services shall be licensed by the competent authorities and issued with a license for broadcasting and television licenses," and that the "broadcasting or television license shall be valid for nine years".  Furthermore, the “suspension of broadcasting and television; transfer of equity interest; and change in name of responsible person shall be approved by the competent authorities”.  Therefore, a television station must obtain a license from the government for a limited period of time, and the government must be aware of the true identity of the owner or the person in charge.

 

The law also stipulates that "the content of radio and television programs shall not include any of the following circumstances: (1) the violation of law or prohibition by law; (2) obstructing the mental and physical health of children or juveniles; and (3) obstructing the public order or good morals”.  Consequently, “the television and broadcasting carriers that violate the provisions of this Law shall be punished by the competent authorities depending on the seriousness of the offence: First – a warning; Second – a fine; Third – suspension; and Fourth – revocation of license.”  The government can also revoke licenses or adopt other means to prevent carriers from broadcasting content that violate public order and good morals.

 

However, the current regulations in Taiwan do not require livestream owners to apply for licenses under real names.  Instead, the government holds a passive attitude towards the control of the broadcasting industry by adopting the concept of "industry self-regulation".  This has resulted in the problem of “non-regulated” livestream channels at the mercy of each and every individual.

 

In contrast, the Chinese government has recognized livestream’s public media characteristic and takes a more proactive approach towards regulating the livestream industry.  On July 1 of this year, the PRC Ministry of Culture promulgated the “Circular on Strengthening the Management of Internet Performances”, which not only seeks to fully implement the concept of “two random and one open” in the internet performance market by carrying out regular random checks, but it further announced that “performers bear direct responsibility for their internet performances” to clarify the responsibility of individuals engaging in livestreaming.  Then, on July 12, the PRC Ministry of Culture announced 16,881 violations by livestream performers as a result of their investigations.  In September, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film, and Television of the PRC announced the “Notice on the Issues Related to the Strengthening of the Administration of Online Audio and Visual Live Broadcasting Services”, which emphasized that live broadcasts shall possess “licenses” while individuals and organizations without one shall not engage in livestreaming.  In other words, a number of “internet celebrities” must now also obtain the relevant live license in order to continue livestreaming.

 

“The reliance on illegal content for profit is not a long-term solution”, and it is evident that Chinese livestream platform broadcasters have begun to explore other modes of healthy competition against the strengthened governmental supervision and regulations.  As the livestream industry is also an emerging industry in Taiwan, it remains to be seen how the Taiwanese government will supervise the industry in the future, or to continue down the path of industry self-discipline.  Liu & Partners Attorneys-at-Law will  cover the most relevant updates related to this field to help our readers gain vital information in the most efficient way. 

 

Livestreaming is an important part of the eSports ecosystem.  Liu & Partners has worked closely with key figures in Taiwan’s gaming and eSports industry, and we have also continued cooperation and maintained good relationships along the way.  We are able to fully grasp the latest trends in the development of Taiwan’s eSports industry, and our partner, Victoria Liu, has been invited by the industry to hold a vital role in the eSports association.  Based on our in-depth knowledge of the eSports industry and our experiences with assisting new and emerging industries, our eSports clients now include the most well-known and representative gaming companies in Taiwan.  We are able to give our enterprise clients the most comprehensive consultation on the necessary legal protections.  Please contact us if you would like to find out more about eSports, or any related inquiries for our services.

 

Liu & Partners Attorneys-at-Law 華通國際法律事務所
Victoria Liu (Partner) 劉懿嫻 合夥律師
Room C, 6F, No. 261, Sec. 3, Nanjing E. Rd., Songshan Dist., Taipei 10550, Taiwan
Tel: +886 (2) 2717 7878
www.liupartners.com

 

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Tel: +886-2-2717-7878

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Room C, 6F, No. 261, Sec. 3, Nanjing E. Rd., Songshan Dist., Taipei 10550, Taiwan

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