Last week Nintendo announced a new “Nintendo Creators Program” that would allow gamers to now get paid with showing Nintendo’s property i.e. gameplay footage, pictures and/or music. Up until recently Nintendo was flagging videos with any Nintendo property in them, and was keeping the total ad revenue between YouTube and Nintendo; leaving the video creator uncompensated for their work.
Here is the overview of this new affiliate program:
- Content creators can submit a single video for ad sharing with Nintendo, and receive 60% of the ad revenue received.
- Or content creators can submit their entire channel and would receive 70% of ad revenue from their videos. This would include videos that are non-Nintendo related as well.
- Nintendo as of now is only allowing a select number of games to be approved and eligible for this program. Notice that games including Super Smash Bros have been left off this list so far.
- Revenue is calculated at the end of each month, with payments being processed two months down the road.
- Payments will be paid through PayPal, so all content creators will be required to open up a PayPal account.
- As of now this program is only available in the Americas and Japan.
In my personal opinion I believe this to be a very poor move by Nintendo. I have commented and expressed my frustrations before about Nintendo flagging some of my videos. Some people have defended Nintendo and have put the blame more on YouTube. They claim that it’s the “bot programs” that are causing these videos to be flagged. I’m sorry, but this is simply not true. Nintendo has been behind the flagging of videos, and sees videos as taking money away from them, rather than as free advertising.
I can see to a point with let’s play videos. I do enjoy watching let’s play videos on occasion, and Nintendo or any company should have the right to decide if they want their whole games shown to others. In the case of reviews however, these videos should fall under the federal fair use law which states:
Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 17 U.S.C. § 106 and 17 U.S.C. § 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:
- the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
- the nature of the copyrighted work;
- the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
- the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors.
Nintendo is not only violating many people’s legal right to do game reviews under the fair use law, but also is coming across as very selfish and money hungry. This move by Nintendo though better than what it was, still shows that Nintendo is out of touch with their audience. In many cases Nintendo is biting the hand that feeds them.
Where will Nintendo draw the line? If I purchase an Amiibo and do a review over that figure, will Nintendo try to get money from my efforts? How is that any different than doing a game review? What if I wear a Nintendo shirt on my video. Will I have to blur out any Nintendo images that I’m wearing?
I’m a fan of Nintendo, and I want to see them succeed. They’ve had a tough go with the Wii U sales, and they’ve had some issues getting quality third party support for years. There is no doubt that Nintendo makes great games, and Nintendo is a big influence in gaming, however the more Nintendo continues to focus unnecessary time and efforts at going after gamers who enjoy their games and want to share their thoughts, the more Nintendo will push gamers away.
I also think it’s odd that Nintendo is limiting the games that are eligible. Why can’t gamers review Nintendo games that aren’t on the list? Nintendo is basically telling people what we can and can’t review or watch.
I for one will not be doing any Nintendo game reviews on any of my future videos, and I encourage you as well if you feel as I do, to not support this program that Nintendo put together. Many prominent video game channels on YouTube are not participating in this program as well, and unfortunately this will hurt Nintendo in the long run. Look at games like Minecraft that have grown tremendously in large part of the huge support and videos shared on YouTube.
What do you think of this new Nintendo Creator Program?