May 27th, 2014


Nintendo has had a rocky relationship with content creators on YouTube making let’s plays and other videos of Nintendo games. The issue started last year when Nintendo suddenly started claiming video from all of their games, not just Wii U games. Content creators were slapped with strikes on their accounts and any revenue generated by the video was going to Nintendo. This led many creators to say they’ll stop featuring Nintendo games since the revenue would no longer be lining their pockets.

Nintendo finally relented and stopped claiming every video it found with images or music from its game and now it looks like the Kyoto company is ready to start sharing that revenue in a new affiliate program. According to a tweet from the official Nintendo of Japan Twitter account, Nintendo will be launching a YouTube affiliate program with video creators in order to split revenue from their videos. There’s no information on when this affiliate program will be available or who can sign up for it, but it is interesting to see, especially on the eve of Mario Kart 8 and its Mario Kart TV YouTube upload feature.

local_offer    Nintendo  wii u  YouTube  
  • And here I have already created a separate youtube account for mario kart 8. I might just delete that and use my regular account.

    • You may still want to do that if you produce content that doesn’t fall under Nintendo’s umbrella on your main channel. There’s no details on how it works, but speculating from other affiliate programs, once you join revenue goes to them from all your videos whether they contain Nintendo stuff or not.

      • Vorpal Blade

        That sounds god awful.

      • Gabe Hoffman

        Then why did it mention revenue would be split between Nintendo and the creators

        • The revenue is still split, but what I’m saying is that you’ll split revenue with Nintendo as your affiliate whether you’re showcasing Nintendo or not, and that’s not fair.

          Unless they can work out some agreement for people who feature multiple games, you’ll likely either be subject to their terms or not.

          • “Sean” The Scorp

            They only claim the videos if they have the volume in or a lot of cutsceens. I lower the volume enough for it to not get claimed and i commentate on the rest.

          • Gabe Hoffman

            You only split revenue if you sign up for the program and I don’t see how its unfair Its Nintendo’s game and they have the right to what they want with it

          • peeer

            Whats not fair is to make money out of something that’s not your property, I think to split revenue like that is really fair. If let’s players want to make money out of these videos they need to realise these games and characters and everything in these games are the property of Nintendo. I mean look for exemple if some cartoon creators would create a Super Mario Bros cartoon without the consent of Nintendo and made money from it, thats breach of copyright. You can look at it all different ways you want it doesn’t change the fact nintendo owns the copyrights.

      • Then I will keep both channels. the 23 cents that I have earned in youtube money is mine and I don’t want to share it!

      • Daniel Gonzalez

        Sounds like leeching to me.

  • Little Seal

    Even if I bought a Super Mario 3D World or Mario Kart 8,this does not give me permission to do this kind of “Let us play”.

    You cannot rent a movie and earn money reselling or showing like a cinema.
    The same applies to video game industry,you just bought the game,you are not the owner of Mario and his friends to earn money on Nintendo’s back.

    • Rinslowe

      Couldn’t agree more. Even though I quite often tune into lets plays to get a feel for a game I might be on the fence about buying.

      • Daniel Carvalho

        But you spread the word. The more you talk about something, the stronger its name gets. Just look at Flappy Birds, for example: if not for PewDiePie (Youtube user with about 27 millions subscribers) telling people NOT to play that game, no one would get interested in knowing what it was about, and no one would even bother playing it to see how bad it is.

        On the other hand, you have Nintendo taking people’s videos down and receiving their revenue. Now, who is going to bother recording an LP video and posting it on Youtube if their income is cut? Instead, they’re going to make LP videos about other companies’ games.

        Now, imagine how much free marketing Nintendo loses with this. Imagine if half of PewDiePie’s subscribers get interested into the Wii U game he’s playing, and half of that amount decides to get a Wii U. Half of 27,149,464 users would be 13,574,732 users interested in the console/gaming he’s playing, and half of that would be 6,787,366 users actually buying a console. And those people would also go on to talk about their game and console to other users, who would them get interested and buy as well. And PewDiePie isn’t the only one who does that, we have thousands of “earlier adopters” that could help spread the word about Nintendo’s gaming system and help drive sales forwards! But none of them is going to talk about their Nintendo games because there’s nothing they can earn from it, and most of them are afraid Youtube might take down their videos for using copyrighted products (and sometimes Youtube takes down people’s videos without the consent of the copyright owner).

        I think what Nintendo is trying to do here might revert this situation. If both parties get revenue, we’ll see more people coming back to making LP’s on their games, but I doubt they’ll return at full force, as Youtube might still take down some videos out of nowhere. Either way, they seem to understand what they’ve done is bad for business, and I’m happy to see them trying to revert their situation.

        • Rinslowe


    • nintendope

      While what you said makes perfect sense, you still don’t understand how the internet works. When people put things online that are genuinely good, people don’t but immediately the game, specially people who are just curious and were not going to buy the game anyway, those just stay and watch, but the word is spread out, spread out to people who would buy the game and now they will since everyone is talking about it.. you see, its a funny mechanism but has been proven time and time again, video game companies are now even encouraging youtube content creators to feature their games since they appeal to a lot of people of the community (and not Nascar.. seriously, who the hell games and watches Nascar.. /facepalm).

      • Steve

        And, do you really an entire LP to determine whether or not to buy a game? Yeah, don’t think so. The amount of content these LPers use, and profit from, far exceed the limits set forth by fair use.

        • Philip Johnsson

          According to the copyright law fair use is if it’s used in a parody, as a teaching tool or if you put your own commentary on etc. Putting your own commentary on it is what let’s player do therefor they are protected by the copyright law itself.

          FUN FACT! Did you know that this particular part of fair use protects fan dubbing as well.

      • Magnus Eriksson

        This is a truthful and sound post

        • nintendope

          Why thank you kind sir.

    • Roadkill409

      I have mix emotions about what Nintendo is doing here. I am not convinced either way about this yet. I will have to see how it plays out. I understand Nintendo made the game, but they did not make your way of playing it. I don’t think video game can be compared to movies in any way other than being entertainment. I can’t watch a movie different than you, but I can play a video game very different than you. Using a similar comparison, Lets say I wanted to show people how to play the board game Monopoly. Would it be wrong to play a game of Monopoly on youtube explaining the details of the game so someone can learn it? Should Hasbro claim the rights to the video your video because you are explaining how to play the game? (it might be a very boring video) What if you decide to show how to play chess on a name brand chess board. Should they have rights to the video you made? Would simply explaining anything about anything fall under your description of infringement? Why does Nintendo not just make a better “lets play video” and see which one the free market likes better.
      But I understand where Nintendo is coming from on copyrights. Maybe this idea will work?? who knows.

      • Santiago

        If you are making a profit, then Hasbro has the right of a share of it.

        • Roadkill409

          Then with that mentality you better call Nike or Toyota and write a check for any profit you make in your business if you use their product while conducting your business.
          Lets say you deliver pizza’s in a Toyota car and walk in Nike shoes. You, by wearing and driving those products, endorse and advertise Nike and Toyota on your behalf while you make money delivering pizza’s.
          These people make money, I assume, by making videos not making Video Games. Making video games is Nintendo’s job. If Nintendo wants to get in the business of make a better “lets play video”, then let them make a better one and the video makers will not make any more money. It is called the free market.
          Obviously there is a market for videos that describe a how a video game is made.
          What about the people who write game FAQ’s walkthroughs. That is a detailed description of the game. And some people or websites make a lot of money from those.

          • peeer

            Using nike shoes and toyota cars to deliver your pizzas does not have anything to do with breaching intellectual property’s copyrights on internet.

            Let’s play videos are comparable like if some cartoon makers wanted to create a Super Mario Bros cartoon without a Nintendo license for exemple and makes money from it. I mean, Super Mario Bros characters are all Nintendo’s Intellectual Property, its the same with all the level designs and everything you see in the game. And by the way, even those who are selling Player’s Guides “legally” have royalties to pay to game makers. I put the legally word between commas because most peoples who makes money from these on internet doesn’t pay the royalties and it makes it illegal because of it.

          • Roadkill409

            I like your argument.
            But I say again, people use other people’s products all the time to make money.
            I would argue, these people are not making an original product with the only selling point is the likeness of characters from Nintendo in a cartoon. They are making a video or review (it might be a very long review about the whole game) about a product. Does Consumer Report or other magazines who reviews products have to pay anything to the manufactures to review any product? I think not because that would manipulate their honest reviews. I assume Consumer Report buys the product to review, Just like, I would guess, these “Let’s Play” video makers have to buy a copy to review. But I bet, pick your favorite product review magazine, gets lots of ad revenue from showing that review. It does not matter if they are viewing it online or in print or on TV? Most companies would love to have someone review their product and get the word out about they sell.
            I understand your point though. Thanks!
            The only reason that Nintendo cares anything about this is because there is money to be made. If not, it would just be a dude making review videos.
            Why do people like to watch people playing an entire game anyway?
            By the way, I like Nintendo a lot. I really only buy Nintendo systems. I do have a PS3, but I got that to watch MLB TV.

          • peeer

            There is a slight difference between making a review of a game and making a complete playthrough. 😉

            If you want to review a game you will show some parts of the games you want to talk about but not the whole complete game and that’s where the “fair play” exception in the DMCA law comes in handy.

          • Roadkill409

            I still wonder why people want to sit and watch an entire lets play video. That blows my mind. That is a long time to watch someone else playing a game that you could be playing yourself. I do not watch nor make these videos.
            How about people who write game FAQ’s or walkthroughs? They make those very detailed and could make money by getting people to go to their website. They explain the game in whole from start to finish, sometimes more. Would that fall under a complete playthrough? It may take the some fun out of the game if you read the entire thing. Or is there a difference in reading and viewing? The copyright material is being delivered from one party to another party. I know MLB takes issues with any kind of re-broadcast in any form.

            Thanks for taking time to reply.

          • peeer

            Walkthroughs and game FAQs could fall into Player’s Guides category I guess. The companies that do player’s guides pays some kind of royalty to the game makers to be able to publish it legally. I’m not sure about strategy guides and such (think Up-Up-Down-Down-Left-Right-Left-Right-B-A-Start for an exemple) but if they do have some royalties to pay to the game makers then it shouldn’t be any different for those that are making money from it on the internet.

            By the way for your information, with all these new internet laws they wanted to pass lately (like SOPA and PIPA)… It would have brought websites such as IGN in the illegal field, even wikipedia would became illegal. So, alot of things we wouldn’t suspect is relatively in a grey area…

          • Roadkill409

            Thanks again for the reply.
            The SOPA and PIPA laws really made me wonder and I thought those would for sure bring the internet to its knees as we know it. Sometimes I only pretend to know things 🙂 But I mostly err on the side of freedom. But I also think people should protect their property if someone is doing you harm. If Nintendo is having harm done (financial loss) could be argued, but it appears to them it is in question, but I guess that is what courts and lawyers are for.
            I appreciate a conversation where people can express opinions and on occasion even admit when someone else might have a good point.

          • Roadkill409

            I see your argument though. Thanks

          • Magnus Eriksson

            “Let’s play videos are comparable like if some cartoon makers wanted to create a Super Mario Bros cartoon without a Nintendo license …”

            No, not really.

    • I think the argument Let’s Players try to make is that the purpose of their videos is to entertain through self-inspired commentary, which wouldn’t work without showing footage of the game. It’s kind of like buying a movie for extra because it has filmer’s commentary.

      • Zuxs13

        But they are making money from it by using someone else’s product. its like saying you are racing in stock car and earning profits off from it and saying you did it driving a Chevy, but Chevy gets no profit off from it. GM would never allow it nor should a Video game company.

        • Roadkill409

          People make money using other people products all the time. Does a pizza delivery guy/girl have to pay Chevy dues to use a Camero to delivery pizzas? And I know pizza companies make a lot of money. But they don’t make their own cars. That is Chevy’s job.

          • Zuxs13

            But the pizza delivery guy doesn’t go on national television and state that he delivered the pizza using a Chevy,
            It’s an inexact analogy because cars are not copy right protected, they logo and car names are, but the car it self is not. the car design is patented and can not be copied and resold and you can not make a profit off Chevy’s name.

            These guys are making a profit off Nintendo’s name and an IP that is copy written, which prevents them from using images, videos, music or other media from the copy right property to make a profit with-out consent from the IP holder.

            Nintendo is not going after the fact that they are making a profit for their reviews, or strategy guides, etc. they are going after the fact that they are using images and videos from their properties in their videos in order to make a profit.

            If they were to go on there and just recount their game play experiences in words, talk about the game, explain how they did each “task” in the game, and limit use of videos of the game to less than 30 secs then they wouldn’t have to pay.

            Its no different than if you create a family slide show and put a copy righted song on the video then post it on You Tube, often it gets taken down. If you made money off that video you would have to pay the record label for the right to use that song in the video.

            That’s why there are sites that offer “free” use music for making videos etc. Thats why you hear about High schools that made a “music” video and posted it on You Tube have had their videos taken down, because they did not obtain permission to use that song, even despite they were not making a profit off from the song.

          • Roadkill409

            Ok, I like that argument. That makes sense to me.
            This just seems like such a gray area. Nintendo has every right to do what they are doing and it will shake out how it does. I just know if I was doing these video, I would stop doing it for Nintendo and continue do it for companies that are not as aggressive. I guess if I was popular enough, that might sway how people shop and maybe Nintendo might change their mind in the future.
            But I wonder how popular Minecraft would be if it was not for all the youtube videos. I know I would not have heard of it if it was not for youtube. Now I have bought 2 versions.

            Thanks for taking the time to give a detailed answer.

          • Zuxs13

            I agree that it is basically free advertisement for their IP’s and games like Minecraft, flappy birds, etc owe a lot of success to these Let’s play videos.

            You are right it is a bit of a gray area, and also a tough line to decide which way Nintendo should go. They shouldn’t stifle their products visibility, but they shouldn’t also throw away a rightful revenue stream.

            So by creating this affiliate program, how much More
            money do you think these people might make by being able to say they are an official Nintendo Affiliate?

          • Roadkill409

            That is a really good point! I like the idea of the Nintendo Affiliate. if there is money to be made, creative people will find ways to make it. Look at MP3’s

          • Zuxs13

            We don’t know all the details behind the program, but the name itself suggests these people will be able to become affiliates of the company in some form. So that has the potential for more money.

          • Roadkill409

            When I first read the article, the words Affiliates of the Company, did not register as a potential positive. But the way you wrote it, it has a lot of positive potential.
            Thanks again for taking the time to reply. I do appreciate it.

        • Yeah, I don’t really know enough to form a solid opinion of what’s right. I think the important question is whether or not it works with Fair Use under commentary.

      • Santiago

        No, its like using Photoshop to make profit but you didn’t pay the license. Or like using the restrooms at a starbucks without buying coffee

        • Roadkill409

          Those are two bad examples and are not the same argument.

          I have never been in a restaurant that has a pay to pee policy.

          But Photoshop is a great example! I can buy, not steal, a legal copy of Photoshop and manipulate as many of my pictures as I like that I took with my own camera and not have to pay Photoshop another dime if I make money on my pictures.
          I am sure none of the people who are making “lets play” video stole a copy of the game.

          • Santiago

            the photoshop license is for content creation. The videogame license is for content consumption

          • Roadkill409

            After talking to other poster, I can understand why Nintendo is doing what they are doing. I can see the Affiliation program could be a positive thing. But you seem to be black and white about this issue. Where I see it as gray. Because the industry as a whole does not seem to agree. Sony and Microsoft don’t seem to be getting as worked up about this as Nintendo is and both of them seem to be making it easier to produce videos with their recent systems. And games like Minecraft can thank their millions and millions of dollars to free advertisements with the lets play type videos. Also, I own Art Academy for the Wii U and take a look on the Miiverse because I bet some people might take issue saying that Nintendo does not have any content creation.
            Also, even by Nintendo going this direction is admitting what they did originally did not work because they are doing this Affiliation program. If Nintendo did not see value in this they would be doing their best to shut it down.
            I understand where you are coming from, but I just don’t believe that a dynamic product like a video games can be compaired to static movies, TV shows, books or anything else. Your experience will be different than mine even if we are playing the same game. That is not so with other media.

          • Roadkill409

            Somehow I think even though, as you put it, “the Photoshop license is for content creation”, you would not extend that creative license to a “Let’s play video” on how to use Photoshop.

    • Daniel

      But still, its amazing advertisement for Nintendo.. So they shouldn’t be saying anything, really.

      • bob

        Nintendo was saying you are making a profit off our game and we need to get paid. These aren’t innocent video reviews, they are people making profit off of a game that they didn’t do anything to produce.

        • Santiago

          Exactly! it would be totally fine if the makers of the videos didn’t make any profit, but if they make a profit it should be shared with Nintendo (or whoever created the content in the first place)

          • Roadkill409

            I bet you think that anyone who buys a copy of Photoshop should pay Photoshop for every single image they manipulate while using Photoshop because they might sell that image and make money. I mean, I am using someone else product to make a profit.
            The world uses other people’s products all the time to make money.
            What would be illegal would be if I take all the source code and make a video game and claim it is my game. That would be wrong.

          • Steve

            Exactly! And, with these LPers, they simply record someone else’s work and profit from it. Yeah, you can’t can’t legally do with concerts, TV shows, Movies, and yes, GAMES! MAKE YOUR OWN GAME AND PROFIT FROM THAT!

          • Roadkill409

            Other people have convinced me in other conversations that there is most likely some gray area here and I can understand where Nintendo is coming from. I still wonder how Nintendo is being damaged though? If this was just some dude making a video no one would care, but since there is some money to be made, now Nintendo cares.
            At first I did not understand the Idea of being an “affiliate of the company”, but that might have some positive attributes too.
            But I still think that video games are very different from a static movie or TV show. We watch the same movie every time. But a video game will be different for everyone playing it. We may play the same Mario Kart, but I will have a very different experience than you. I just don’t think that TV, music, movies, or even books are good comparisons.
            There has to be something else that would be a better comparison. Something that is dynamic in nature and not static. Understand where I am coming from?

          • TehEngineer

            No. A better analogy would be:

            If someone edited a image in Photoshop and made money, they should pay the person who originally captured/made that image royalties.

            The equivalent of what you were saying is that if someone made money of a LP, they should play royalties to the manufacturer of the recording device they used.

          • Roadkill409

            I like that one.
            So many people are black and white on this issue. Where I see this as a gray area. I don’t think the industry as a whole has come to an agreement as to what is acceptable. I don’t even know why I am writing so much about this today. I have no skin in this game at all. But I like freedom yet I understand personal property. Everyone has the right to protect their personal property, however we all use other people’s products to make money all the time.
            A used video game shop makes money on the video games that other people made and they don’t pay the creators a dime.

      • Steve

        Funny thing is, they don’t really do very much “advertising.” By this, I mean they don’t say why viewers should buy the game, what can this product provide, etc, they just wiggle their thumbs, and spoil the entire game.

        • CharlesAnderson

          A couple of reasons Nintendo may not like them:

          1) Let’s Play video shows how terrible a game is and kills sales of new games and/or potentially hurts sales of Virtual Console rereleases.

          2) Let’s Play video commentators use barbaric, vile, disgusting language throughout the video, scream at the top of their lungs like idiots and associate themselves to the game in a public and not too flattering light.

          On the other hand, they can have the exact opposite effect as these two examples. I understand Nintendo doesn’t want consumers getting their gaming “fix” entirely from Youtube, and why should a YouTube content creator be able to buy a copy of a game and kill hundreds, thousands or even hundreds of thousands of potential sales by spoiling the entire game (100% Walkthrough!)

          I get it on both sides, and it’s nice to see they are coming up with a way to be a bit more amicable about it rather than damaging their brand by their own actions.

      • Little Seal

        Tell me more…
        What if I made a video on my channel saying that the TLOZ Wind Waker HD is the worst remake ever? And this game does not count as a new game for the system?

        Is this still good advertising for Nintendo???

        For instance,I do not need any kind of these “Youtubers” to confirm my will to buy Mario Kart 8,teasers from Nintendo Channel are enough for a true player like me.

        • CharlesAnderson

          You can do that but it’s not fair use to make the video and then use 2 hours of captured footage from the game in an attempt to prove your point. There are limits to the amount of video journalists can use and there haven’t been any until content producers started enforcing their rights. It just hit the Youtube content creators where it hurts and they didn’t like it.

    • Daniel Carvalho

      I recommend you watch this, so you can better understand what nintendope said:

      • Zuxs13

        Lots of speculation in that “theory” but he would have a bit of a foot hold if Nintendo was actually restricting talking about the Wii U like he says. They are not.

        • Daniel Carvalho

          The important part is the understanding of what Nintendo’s policy on taking copyrighting on Youtube means. It may be true Nintendo doesn’t restrict those videos directly, but the fact that Youtube sometimes may take down videos even without the consent of the copyright retainer, of just the fact that LPyers will not get anything from showing playthroughs of Nintendo games while Sony and Microsoft games will, is already enough to restrict indirectly people from uploading Wii U playthroughs videos, and it’s exactly that that is killing the console.

          He does indeed use a lot of speculation, but his overall basis is correct: the easier t is for people to talk about something (not having any restrictions), the more people will do; and the more people talk about it, the more its name grows, and more and more people will research, try it out, get ahold of it, and then start spreading the word to others who’ll then do the same.

          The fear of having your videos taken down, even though Nintendo doesn’t plan to do so, or simply the fact that they will never rend you money anymore are already restrictions. It doesn’t matter if who created those restrictions was Youtube or the gamers’ fear, the fact that Nintendo triggered those restrictions is already enough to kill their sales by taking down their free marketing the internet can promote.

          • Zuxs13

            Again the power of these videos is what in part is his speculation. To say a lets play video of Mario 3d World not being shown had much of any effect on the sales of that game is a major speculation. It could have effects on the game sames but those effects would be minimal at best. He even stated in his videos that games that build on past successes and names sell better than their predecessors do. 3D world would e one of those games building on its predecessor.

            These YouTube gamers fearing Nintendo is in reality their own fault. they were knowingly (and maybe in some cases unknowingly) making illegal videos. They only got away with it because they made small amounts of money and most of the major companies were either ignorant themselves or didn’t care.

            This Affiliate program could be a great thing. It will allow these YouTube gamers to essentially become official Nintendo Affiliates and they will be able to use that in their titles. increasing their visibility and their reputations, possibly leading to more profits for them.

        • CharlesAnderson

          Not only speculation, but he’s also got chips in the game so there’s some subjective opinion, and wishful thinking on his part, that he can or will one day be as successful as “Pewdiepie.” If anything it’s obvious that someone who just plays games and acts like an imbecile would be so successful while someone like MatPat can put so much effort into thoughtful and well produced videos and yet have only 10% of the following. At least he knows what it will take to achieve that level of success. Or he can simply wait for the tide to continue to roll in his direction. Youtube is rapidly becoming a gamers portal to some degree.

          • Zuxs13

            Its a totally new market for everyone, its going to take a while to iron all the kinks out, and hopefully arrive at a fair level of revenue sharing.

    • tronic307

      You also can’t play a movie. Does the game play itself? Let’s see how far anybody would get featuring only the title screen in a video. Let’s plays are primarily about interaction, not intellectual property. If I operate a vehicle in a video, how much should the manufacturer get paid?

      I vote for zero.

      • Zuxs13

        If they were to simply recount verbally their experiences of playing the game or what they do in the game you would be correct. Its the fact that they are “showing” the game in the video.

        You argument would mean i could go to a movie theater record Godzilla, go home and talk about it and play the entire movie in the video for everyone to see, get paid for showing it, an NOT pay a dime to Warner Brothers. They should just be content with the “Free advertisement”.

        • Roadkill409

          good argument. I like that analogy. But the only counter to that would be, I only bought a ticket to the movie I don’t own it. If I buy the movie would I have more rights to give a review? I would guess not.
          Even though I am not sure that Movies and video games are in direct parallel

        • tronic307

          No, the movie is a different case because it’s not interactive, you can remove the user from the equation and the work will still be complete. This is more akin to watching someone play an arcade game without spending a quarter. You have the whole experience when you watch a movie, but video games are interactive and must be played to fully appreciate, and are as such incomplete works.

          While I applaud this step in the right direction by Nintendo, the IP holder should not under any circumstances be given control of the individual’s unique perception of their interactive content for the mere price of entertainment. Nintendo initially tried to block Smash Bros. Melee from being played at a tournament and only reversed their stance when it caused a furor.

          IP should be upheld to be sure, but our perceptions are NOT for sale. The rampant dishonesty in video game journalism one other symptom of IP holders relentless attempt at absolutely controlling the image of their content through the annexation of our experiences.

          • Zuxs13

            You completely missed the point. How they play the game has nothing to do with them being restricted from it. its the fact that they are showing the game online with out permission to do so, and making money off from that is illegal.

            A player in the arcade playing a game and someone watching is not illegal they are not advertising the game or making money off playing it and that person watching it. If they did make money off that action it is illegal.

            This is how Nintendo was initially able to pull their games from video game competitions, they didn’t receive permission to use the Nintendo IP in competition and people were making money off that property. Nintendo had every right to block their game from those tournaments by law, the back lash as you say is why they gave the permission back to use it, and they are now embracing the tournaments.

            The movie example still counts as in both cases you are showing a video of an Intellectual property that you don’t own the rights or have permission to show, and you are making money off from that video.

          • tronic307

            Let’s not confuse right and legal right. All rights are reserved™ including the right to silence unsolicited opinions. If that doesn’t alarm you, you need to be having a debate with yourself, not me.

          • Zuxs13

            I don’t write the laws, and that is for a different debate. You as a person have the right to silence anyone who is providing unsolicited opinions of yourself as well if they are found to be untruthful.

      • Steve

        Umm! Have you ever heard of Movie Reviews? You can show segments of a game for critiquing purposes. Many do these things and it is perfectly legal under fair use. But, there are limits. You can’t show and entire game, like these LPers do. That is, without compensation to the creators.

        • FutureFox

          I agree. I watched someone play CV:LoS2 in its entirety. No reason to buy it after that or even rent it.

    • companyoflosers

      in most cases lets plays help people decide if they want to buy a certain game or not. its differtent than a movie in the way that you will never get the full enjoyment or experience out of it just by watching. also many people provide critical opinion on games in reviews which also got flagged for copyright which is a blatant violation of youtube’s own user agreement. as long as it falls under fair use, is educational, or offers a critical opinion, it is not subject to being flagged and can legally earn revenue from ads. the problem is youtube’s flagging system is automated and doesnt pick up on things like that and content creators have to go through a sometimes lengthy process to get their videos unflagged and the revenue flowing back into their pockets. and even after that the add revenue they could have had while the video was flagged went to someone else who it doesnt belong to. its downright stealing just as much as reselling a movie or a game and calling it yours would be.

    • Steve

      Totally agree. Videos like the ones made by IGN and GameXplain are a different story. This is because they use the content primarily for cretiquing. This is one of protections granted by fair use. If it wasn’t, companies would be able to sue someone for talking bad about their products, even if that individual was speaking the truth. But, these “Lets players” are simply taking these protections out of context and claim to be “advertising” the product, even though they really don’t do any kind of advertising. They are simply lazy people who want to make a quick buck out of the property of others.

    • Magnus Eriksson

      Bad analogy

    • phaymousb

      Read the Fair Use policy i’m sure you and those 27 thumb up idiots haven’t.

    • 112321

      Video games are an interactive media. The experience of watching a let’s play is different than actually playing the game. Plus it’s free advertising. I can’t tell you how many times I discovered a great game from let’s plays and then bought it, supporting the companies that made it.

    • Pokémon Fan

      Well of course. That would be piracy.

    • Roman

      Please read my above comment. And though this breaks all the laws of internet and forum common sense, I would like to change your mind.

    • Tythus

      Just one thought of your argument it’s not like a film where if you play the film and it’s the same every time unlike a computer game where say while the story would be the same you totally miss out on the ‘game’ side.

    • Super Buu

      Movies and TV shows show you a story you cannot interact with. Video games are an interactive story where the experience and the progress can change dramatically from a different playthrough. Like stated below, the Let’s players also add their own voice, their own commentary, thus making the experience they upload original onto itself. This has proven time and time again that people would buy games if they see enough of it and it can help the player if they are stuck in some part of the game.

      We can determine if a game is worth our time or not, an advantage we didn’t have 20 years ago. You are treating this practice as if it is some sort of pirating, which it isn’t. The Let’s player itself bought the game though. This is simply Fair Use.

  • TULFich

    This seems like a good step up… they should include more youtube features like mario kart 8 in new incoming games, specially smash bros, (to make videos up to 5mins according to normal match time settings :D)

  • Daniel

    Nintendo usually relies on word of mouth to promote its products. They rarely open their wallets when it comes to advertising, so I think it is incredibly greedy to profit from those who are giving them the free advertising they so desperately depend on.

    • Roadkill409

      I know if I was making lets play video’s using Nintendo games. I would just stop making them for Nintendo. Why put up with the hassle? But really, Nintendo should just make a better lets play video and let the free market decide which one they want to watch. Just like anything else, make something better and people will go to it.

    • Zuxs13

      How are they being greedy? It’s their IP that is being used by someone else to make a profit off from it. By law they have the right to be paid for their IP being used. This system they are putting in place is “hopefully creating” a uniform payment system similar to how any other digital media collects income when their IP’s are being used, played, etc.

      • Santiago

        I agree with you, besides, you purchase the game with a restricted licence. you re not supposed to make profit from a game you purchase, its like if I bought the game and rented it to other people to make profit

        • Roadkill409

          The renting of a video game is not the same argument at all as someone making a video.
          For example I can sell my video game I bought to a friend or to gamestop or on ebay and Nintendo has no right to any profit or loss that I might make on that sale. When I sell my car I don’t have to give Ford a dime if I make or lose money. Use car dealerships don’t pay the manufactures of the vehicles a dime when they resell a car.
          I understand Nintendo needs to protecting their IP, but I am not convinced this is the most effective way to protect it. Because how is it being damaged? What damages is Nintendo getting from this? If they want to make money in this new market, make a better lets play video.

      • Daniel

        I think it’s too early to tell what this affiliate program will be. They may be within their rights to a % of peoples earnings but that doesn’t mean I agree with it. I believe it will hurt their future marketing efforts by pissing off people who passionately promote the big N. For a company who relies so heavily on word of mouth and is extremely reserved when it comes to marketing its brand, it would be wiser to let the public make their videos without trying to monetise the free advertising they are getting.

        • Relick

          Is posting a film online with occasional commentary then monetising it illegal or just ‘free advertising’? If someone watches an entire movie through and is unlikely to go and purchase it, how is that different to someone watching Jesse Cox playing through a game to the end and then be unlikely to purchase the game?

          I don’t have a problem with people posting lets plays and walkthroughs etc. up for free, but I do with those who monetise it simply because of how it teeters on being illegal as well as being completely unethical. People like freddiew don’t earn nearly as much money from YouTube as people like PewDiePie and I would argue freddiew puts in much, much more effort into his videos than PDP does.

          Regardless of whether it pisses people off or not, (they’ll get over it soon) I think Nintendo made the right decision. The LP scene shouldn’t be about companies trying to earn money for their creations and the LPers saying NO and the sooner the LPers learn they aren’t all powerful internet gods the better.

          • Daniel

            Posting movies and audio books are a different breed to games and are a different situation entirely. If you watch a new release movie or listen to the latest book, that would essentially be pirating the whole experience. Lets plays or impression videos are more along the lines of an unboxing or review. The experience is not replicated as you have no way of playing it. It gives you an in depth analysis of the game for viewers who are either going to get the game or are on the fence.

            Watching someone else’s experience is not ‘teetering on being illegal’. It’s more likely to create/continue awareness and therefore create more opportunity for sales. The notion that someone will watch a lets play and not need to buy the game is ridiculous. I have watched a ton of Mario Kart 8 videos, and I’m even more excited to purchase the game. In fact, I haven’t seen or heard any advertisements on TV, radio, youtube…etc.

            This issue will be an ongoing debate for years to come and I acknowledge Nintendo is within its rights to profit from fan generated content. But just because they can does’t mean they should. If anything it reflects poorly on Nintendo, a company who has proudly stated in the past that they depend word of mouth to sell their products. This aggressive approach is counter productive to their current marketing efforts, one which has not worked well for them as it is.

          • That very much depends on the game. There are many heavily scripted linear fpsers where watching a let’s play before your first play through of the game would make the game feel like a second play through. A game like MK8 probably wouldn’t be damaged much, if at all, but a game such as tlou would really suffer.

  • Roadkill409

    I have mixed emotion on this. It is not like any of these “let’s play” videos are claiming that they created the game they are playing. If someone were to take everything in a game and made a video game of their own, and claimed that it was their own work, now that would be wrong. But this is not that at all.
    If anything, I don’t like lets play videos because they allow me to watch the entire game and then some of the thrill is gone. But that is easily fixed by not watching it.
    However, I have watched a few lets play videos to get quick tips and to see if a game is of my liking.
    But with this mentality Nintendo should also go after people who make “Game FAQ walk throughs” too. When people write those walk throughs the writer gives very detailed descriptions of the game they are playing. I assume this should also fall under the umbrella of any rebroadcast, retransmission, or account of this game, without the express written consent is prohibited,”
    We will just have to see how it plays out.

    • Zuxs13

      A lot of these “let’s play” videos are essentially strategy guides. Companies like Prima Games, have to pay money to the company that own the game rights they make the guide for. So why shouldn’t these people who make money off from playing the game and posting the video as a strategy guide.

      • Roadkill409

        Ok, that is a good argument.
        I assume it is exclusivity rights to get the game early and have the material out before anyone else. But then wouldn’t people who write Game FAQ or walkthroughs being infringing on their work and the work of the maker of the game? But I assume the people who write walkthroughs never get calls from Prima to ask for some of their ad revenue. I could be wrong, but Walkthroughs are still around after many years. And I can go and download those for free just the same. And people who write walkthroughs give very detailed descriptions of the games. They basically give the entire game away in words not pictures.
        But your argument is a valid one. Thanks! I understand this is a gray area, but at what point is going over board to protect your property and what is free advertising for your product.

        I bet there are literally hundreds of companies that would kill for advertisements like Nintendo is getting for free with these videos.

        • Zuxs13

          Well many sites like IGN who generate a lot of add revenue pay a certain amount to companies like Nintendo for their Wiki pages and walk0-through pages, or obtain rights in order to do so. I know there are a bunch of other walk-through pages and sites out there that probably don’t but I doubt many of them actually make much if any money at all off them.
          If you posted a self made walk through of a video game on your you tube page, you won’t receive any ad revenue for it, i believe you have to create a separate type of YouTube page for that.
          Also those all word based walk-through pages i believe are not infringing on the IP because they are avoiding using pictures or music or videos directly copied from the game, they are wording their personal experiences with the game and what they did to achieve the particular goal with in the game, something that isn’t copyrighted.

          • Roadkill409

            Thanks. I had no idea that IGN pays game companies to keep up the Wiki’s. But if that is the way that the industry works, then I guess Nintendo has an argument. But I wonder how other players (Sony, Microsoft) will handle the same thing. That might make things sway one way or another.

          • Zuxs13

            Well what they pay or how they pay is between them and the other companies. Most likely they provide add space for Nintendo or Sony or whom ever in exchange for the rights to use their IP’s in those walk through.

            You click on the site ti review the walk through, adds pop up, IGN makes money. They provide some of those adds to the developer as well or a % of those add revenues. The developer makes money. You get a “free” source of information.

            How they handle it will be based on how much they could potentially make off from it. Nintendo has far more IP’s than both those companies combined and they have 30 years forth of games people are playing so there is a lot of potential revenue to be made.

          • Roadkill409

            having grown up with Nintendo I totally agreed. Nintendo has so much more depth than the others. It will be interesting to see how it works out. I prefer to err on the side of freedom. However, people should be able to protect their property if someone is trying to damage or do harm to them.
            Thanks again for giving the details. I appreciate it

  • darkcreap

    If the people who make these videos get some revenue, I think it is just fair for Nintendo to get some from it, but globally I have also my concerns about this thing. Video walkthroughs are very usefull when you want to see certain parts of a game to see if you like it, to have tips if you are stuck in a game, see speed run videos, glitches, etc.

    I think Nintendo should do it carefully to no alienate people who play their games. I am wondering. Do other console manufacturers, like Sony and Microsoft or publishers, like Ubisoft, do things like this?

  • lonewolf

    Wasnt that youtube new policies problem not nintendos i think sony videos and microsoft videos and every other gaming company (not just games) were being picked on.

    • Yes it was that YouTube update that caused all that shit, Even a developer making his own game and was showing it off on YouTube got his videos hit by copywrite and it said it belonged to Sony, the guy himself was like Uh, no Sony has nothing to do with my game. Then later it said he needed permission from himself…

  • Decker Shado

    …Do people simply not know how this whole online video thing works?

    This is not a new strategy. This is not peculiar. This is the status quo, for fuck’s sake.

    Yeah, YouTube’s fucked up. That’s the way it’s been for years. You want some real fun? Try doing video reviews of Asylum films. Protection under law be damned, they’ll strike it down, claiming copyright infringement. Have an issue? They’ll deny your counter-claim without even looking at it, forcing their ads on your work for them to make money on and you not. (without your consent, of course.. which makes it… infringing on your copyright, aye?)

    But I suppose if it’s Nintendo’s fault that 3rd party developers refuse to even try to support the system, it must also be Nintendo’s fault that YouTube is so fucked up.

    Pardon me while I play 3DS while driving, and blame Nintendo for anyone I might happen to hit.

  • kentray1985

    These fans are giving Nintendo more advertisement for their games than they are and they really want part of the revenue from these players that spend countless of money on and time to showcase their games. Nintendo has gone too far with their ridiculus policies and I see them becoming more and more like microsoft. Stop the restrictions and give back to your gaming community Nintendo.

  • Gabe Hoffman

    I don’t see what’s so bad about it. It seems like a good middle ground if you ask me. I wouldn’t like it either if somebody was making an LP of my game and profiting off it without my consent. Its not like they are keeping all the revenue for themselves you know. As I have said before you can’t bash them for doing something that is completely within their right

  • Good, finally something not stupid from Nintendo.

  • FutureFox

    Make me wonder why music companies doesn’t do the same thing for people who post whole albums on YouTube, instead of just having those videos removed.

  • Robert Butters

    I can’t believe people are behind Nintendo blocking lets play vids. These people are doing Nintendo’s advertising work, they should get paid by Nintendo. If you buy something, you have the legal right to review it. I watch vids of every game before I buy. SMH

    • DeStarfighter

      yeah you have “some” rights to review it, i dont know exactly how much but even then the amount of footage you are allowed to show is limited.

    • FutureFox

      Two things: 1) people bought games before without “seeing” the game long before youtube. You know how? They rented it. 2) You’re right they are doing Nintendo’s advertising, using Nintendo licensed characters. That be like me making a Mario board game without Nintendo’s permission and claiming its free advertising for Nintendo. Obviously you need to obtain a license to do this. Why is not doing so frowned upon in the physical world but not online? Basically Nintendo has every right to make its claim.

      • Brandon

        At the same time its just advertising, some people including just enjoy watching their favorite youtuber play the game.

  • X3Charlie

    What is someone at Nintendo’s board watching Game theory XD

    • ETMew2348

      i would not be surprised

  • Christian Schoff

    Oh crap! Wario got some Chaos Emeralds!

  • Squid

    Well As long as the Nintendo Youtubers get enough money as they once did it should be fine.

  • Magnus Eriksson

    Nintendo should keep themselves too good for doing greedy things like this. If something they should pay the people who do this, not have a piece of the cake. Theybmust stop going after the little man in their exaggerated protectionism, because it will only hurt themselves in the end.

  • Jodina Joseph

    I can’t believe on it because of

  • Brandon

    Reading this just makes me think, how can some nintendo fans call microsoft greedy.

  • Roman

    I think people are being way too protective with this stuff. Let’s Play videos are good for the industry. Any involvement with the community is good for the industry. Nintendo should give them freedom to do what they want and even encourage them. You should too. Here’s why:

    1) These videos generate interests and therefore sales. People that watch these videos are much more likely to buy the game; it’s an extended preview, people like what they see, want to not only watch but try playing the game themselves so they go out and buy it. Publicity is a good thing. Free publicity is even better. My little siblings do this all the time: they watch a bunch of LP videos on something and then beg me or our parents to get it for them.
    I read some comments below that these videos “100% spoil” the game and so people don’t go out to buy them. If someone wants to watch a LP video, they obviously don’t give a damn about spoilers and that won’t prevent them from buying the game.
    Some people below said that LP videos show how crapy a game is and stops people from buying the game. That’s a bad thing? Wouldn’t you want someone to warn you a game sucks so that you don’t waste your money?

    2) LP video makers aren’t “stealing” anything. That would also reply that reviews on any game, movie, book, etc is also “stealing” content. Are we now not to even mention these games? The profit LP video makers make is from THEIR input, THEIR comments, THEIR opinions, THEIR reviews, THEIR gameplay. And who cares what those comments are (“barbaric sounding or not)? If people watch it than it appeals to a certain crowd, let that crowd get what they want.

    3) Nintendo shouldn’t care about “loosing money” from these videos. For YEARS there have been clones of Nintendo games (the original Giana Sisters) that people actually bought and could’ve spent on genuine Nintendo games, but Nintendo never sued/went after them. Why? Because Nintendo is confident that it has the better product and won’t lose customers. Going after LP videos is kinda backwards considering they ignore blatant clones (especially the garbage on mobile platforms).

    4) Going after LP videos makes Nintendo the bad guy (I would even dare to say Dick). Yes, we may be fans of Nintendo, but we shouldn’t follow them blindly. If they make a bad decision, we should call them out on it and push for them to make appropriate actions. This gives us the better product and gives the company a better name. Becoming an oppressor on the internet and infringing on a rather large aspect of gaming culture can never be a good thing for Nintendo. LP video makers are leaders in the gaming community (they have followers) and pushing them away pushes audience/consumers away from Nintendo.

    You may not need these videos to form your opinions or decisions to buy something, but whether you like it or not it does for MANY people. And blindly ignoring that and flaming this community in the name of Nintendo is unwise. Nintendo can make great games, has a great history, but it also is not perfect. If we want it to become better, if we want Nintendo to improve, we cannot blindly follow but must take things for what they are, call out bad decisions, and push for improvement.

  • Roman

    Hey, where’s my comment?
    Posted it like 9 hours ago…