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How Does Streaming Work?

Streaming is a convenient and fast way to watch or listen to your favorite web content without needing to first save it to your device. As some works are protected by copyright, the use of streaming is considered as being illegal in certain cases. This article will introduce you to how streaming works, explore the difference between legal and illegal streaming, and introduce you to a few platforms where you can access streamed content.

What Is Streaming?

Streaming allows the diffusion and playback of video and audio content on the Internet.

How Does Streaming Work?

When a file is read in streaming, data downloaded from a web site are temporarily stored on the RAM of the computer, and then transferred — with a very slight delay — to a media player, before being replaced by new data.

Legal and Illegal Use of Streaming

Legal Streaming

A large group of multimedia content is protected by copyright and is, theoretically, only available through a paid service. Some sites, via free or paid offers, allow you to acquire or legally read this content by downloading it or by streaming it.

Content that is no longer protected by intellectual property laws, or that which has never been covered by these laws, is usually the content that is made available for streaming for free.

Illegal Streaming

Some sites allow free access to copyright protected content. Watching this kind of streamed media is illegal.

Where to Host My Streamed Content

You can host your content for streaming on YouTube, Dailymotion, or Vimeo.

Where to Listen To or Watch Streamed Content

You can watch streamed content on: distribution platforms, like YouTube, Dailymotion, and Vimeo; music streaming websites, like Deezer and Spotify; the official website and various social media profiles of the artist/record label, such as a YouTube channel or a MySpace or Facebook page; video-on-demand services; online radio platforms; and websites offering audio or video content under Creative Commons or in the public domain.

Image: © ладимир Семенчук - 123RF.com

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