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Streamlabs shamed into dropping 'OBS' from product name after open-source OBS Project wades into Twitter spat

Logitech-owned streaming software likes to copy others' homework

One of the few virtues of Twitter is that if someone makes a complaint to a big corporation, it's public. Everyone can see it, which sometimes means you get a rapid escalation and result. Just ask the OBS Project, which this week shamed Logitech subsidiary Streamlabs into changing the name of a product.

The clash started when cloud-based streaming tools vendor Lightstream pointed out the very conspicuous resemblance between Streamlabs' website and its own. That led to Lightstream's co-founder namechecking the open-source OBS Project, on which Streamlabs is based.

OBS is short for Open Broadcaster Software, and the OBS Project creates OBS Studio, a free multi-platform tool for video recording, editing, and live-streaming.

In 2019, Logitech acquired Streamlabs, which offers a "freemium" Windows program, until now called Streamlabs OBS, which is based on the free OBS Studio. Streamlabs' free version is open source, but the company's Prime product is subscription-based.

According to the OBS Project, it asked Streamlabs to remove "OBS" from its product's name, but Streamlabs responded by trademarking "Streamlabs OBS" itself. The OBS Project subsequently trademarked the whole phrase. It's not always easy to get a response from large corporates – for instance, The Reg asked Logitech if it had any comment on the story, with no response at all so far.

After making the spat public on Twitter, though, various streamers of whom this ancient hack had never heard got involved and just 15 hours later, Streamlabs tweeted:

We are taking immediate action to remove OBS from our name.

Streamlabs OBS is built on top of the OBS open-source platform; Streamlabs OBS is also open source, and our code is publicly available.

We take responsibility for our actions and will support the community.

So there you have it. Perceived an injustice? Whine loudly about it on Twitter. ®

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