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Rumor: Youtube Getting tough on video game monetization in 2014

darkpower

Banned
Dec 10, 2008
639
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EDIT: This has been since ruled as a legit issue, so now I've been making some judgments. I have a video being uploaded now on YouTube explaining my take on everything.

Filing this under "rumor" since I personally haven't found anything else about this yet (I'm pretty sure TotalBiscuit would be having a field day with this if there was something more to this than just this article since he's been getting rather critical about the stances concerning this topic), but this did reach top stories on N4G, so I'm assuming it's at least worth the discussion. Would be rather disastrous to a lot of people if it were true (and again, I don't know because I personally haven't seen anything else regarding this).

From http://cramgaming.com/youtube-getting-tough-video-game-monetization-12989/

Whilst this news might not affect a vast number of people, for some it’s further proof that the powers that be are not happy with the growing number of people that are earning money using their products. Namely gamers uploading gameplay footage either raw or with voice over and then earning money from advertising revenue on Youtube. For most people who are not partnered with a network such as Machinima, uploading gameplay videos often requires a random check which asks the uploader to provide proof of permission to monetize the video or proof of ownership of the content outright. This often leads to a period where the video does not run any adverts until approved. If suitable proof isn’t provided then no adverts are run alongside the video and the uploader doesn’t get paid. The process is shrouded in such a grey area, considering the nature of some videos which put more effort in than simply uploading a trailer or gameplay clip. Users can claim fair usage rights, which ultimately doesn’t always work and so leaves some uploaders earning nothing for their efforts, no matter how great or small that is. It can be debated whether it’s right or wrong for people to earn money using other peoples derivative works in context of making something unique from it, however, it seems the industry is adopting an overall tougher stance on this.

Most savvy gamers will have joined one of the major networks who take a cut from earnings but bypass the random checks which has meant no delays in earning potential as soon as a video is posted. However, that’s all about to change, as from early next year Youtube will be random checking videos regardless of whether the uploader channel is partnered with a network or not. The random check will take between 2 and 48 hours, but it’s not clear how long the process takes if suitable permissions are provided. Networks will be able to categorize channels into groups with either a Managed, or Affiliate status, with the latter most likely being more common. Affiliates will have random videos checked as per the new rules whereas those channels who are Managed might be able to avoid it.

This news will come as quite a blow to many let’s players, vloggers and channels posting official trailers and won’t necessarily stop them, but will impact their earning potential. For some, the motive of getting paid for doing something they enjoy is a great benefit, and obviously video game footage is popular with viewers, remove the financial benefit, and it’s likely some will stop producing videos.

The industry has seen a shift in the last year towards this action, what with Nintendo taking over advertising revenue from videos featuring their content. Microsoft also posted revised terms and conditions for its content earlier this year. With the advent of the PS4 and Xbox One allowing gamers to upload videos, stream gameplay via Twitch etc. It’s clear publishers are keen on gamers posting videos, but only under their own controlled environments where financial gain for the uploader isn’t a factor. To round things off, Sony is not allowing direct video capture from the newly released PS4 until it rolls out an update…whenever that is. Times are changing for Youtubers, and perhaps channels will need to adapt when it comes to video production and produce more unique content that reaches beyond simple gameplay videos and trailers.

For those interested, here’s a list of some publishers and their stances on video game monetization.



* Activision - Does not allow derivative works per their terms. See 3. License.

* Bungie - Specifically says not to create derivative works from their software in their terms. Probably why Halo is a pain.

* Capcom - OK if you aren’t making any money. See this FAQ post on their forums.

* Codemasters - Does not grant permission to monetize videos. Posting videos is accepted.

* GungHo Online - These guys do stuff like Ragnarok Online. Videos OK, monetization not OK.

* Microsoft - Videos are completely fine as long as you are not paid. They say part of this includes Halo in their rules, so Bungie may or may not still get on your case. Check out the rules here.

* Natsume - These guys are famous for Harvest Moon among others. From an email they allow videos without monetization.

* Naughty Dog - The Last of Us, Uncharted, Jak and Daxter… great games, but they don’t want you to use ANY of their footage (said via email).

* Nintendo - Encourages videos (especially Let’s Plays), but may decide to monetize your video. The exact wording is on Go Nintendo.

* NIS America - Famous for stuff like Danganrompa and Disgaea. Encourages videos, monetization not allowed.

* Rockstar / Take-Two Interactive - Encourages videos unless they are just straight cutscene footage (Let’s Plays with cutscenes OK). Pretty sure they don’t want things monetized. See the full rules here.

* Sega - Does not give any license for YouTube footage .

* SNK - They do not give license for derivative works.

* Square Enix - Does not grant individual permission to use their works, but DOES grant permission to larger entities. .

* TecmoKoei - Famous for stuff like Dead or Alive and Ninja Gaiden. Specifically in the words of the email, “TecmoKoei does allow people to make video reviews and other similar works, but we do not typically allow monetization.”

* TellTale Games - The Walking Dead, Wolf Among Us, Sam and Max… these guys have some really good stuff. Let’s Plays are definitely allowed, monetization is not. See this permission post on their forums.

Courtesy of FrozenFoxy (FS Forums).

Posted by Robert Cram - Visit Website

EDIT: Codemasters had given their stance on the issue in this thread, and apparently, whoever ran the story on Cram Gaming got it wrong about them.

Codemasters here...

Just a heads up that what is outlined in the original article is wrong. Our YouTube setup (for want of a better word) is something I've worked on quite a bit so should be in the position to shed some light. Obviously things can change but currently, and as it stands:

  • We have no problem with users creating content using our games.
  • We also have no problem with users monetising their original content, even if it does use our games.
I don't think I've ever blocked a monetisation claim so not quite sure where the original claim has come from.

Also note that TotalBiscuit has ran a boycott on everything related Sega for their hard nosed stance on anything up on YouTube and their backwards reason as to why it's like that.
 

bishoptl

Banstick Emeritus
Jun 6, 2004
29,794
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0
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* Rockstar / Take-Two Interactive - Encourages videos unless they are just straight cutscene footage (Let’s Plays with cutscenes OK). Pretty sure they don’t want things monetized.
Best take on the situation, imo.
 

Jarmel

Banned
Mar 3, 2010
43,442
1
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So are the publishers pushing hard on this or is it Google being a bunch of assholes again?
 

PotionBleue

Member
May 6, 2013
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Is it always 100% ad revenue for (uploader+partnership network) or (publisher)? If so why don't they implement some sharing system?
 

rdrr gnr

Member
Aug 18, 2010
10,509
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iirc, Rockstar was really cunty about videos early this gen. However, what they have listed there is absolutely the approach they should take.
 

HariKari

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Jun 28, 2013
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I don't really get why Activsion or EA would want to cut down on youtube footage of BF4/CoD. You could easily argue such footage helps move more copies of those games. And then both companies invite out major youtubers to their events in order to generate hype. Doesn't make sense to turn around and deny them a way to earn money from their work.
 
Oct 11, 2009
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REALLY big news if true will be a major blow back from this.
Some what understandable but really sad for the "good" YT folks out there making a living and providing a great service and fun for lots of people.
 

TimeEffect

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Mar 17, 2010
27,953
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705
Shouldn't these guys just want no monetization? I mean, that alone would probably cut out a lot of Youtubers from uploading videos. To say they want no uploaded footage seems like it would lead to some extreme backlash

I wonder if we'll see a video/image hosting app launched on PS4/Xbox for the Sharing features on the consoles. Wouldn't that lead to Sony/MS making money (ads) off of their own ecosystem, which is something they may end up wanting in the long term?
 

darkpower

Banned
Dec 10, 2008
639
0
0
So are the publishers pushing hard on this or is it Google being a bunch of assholes again?

Nintendo's been doing things like this lately. I couldn't monetize the second part of my response to Anita Sarkeesian because I dared to have 30 seconds (if that) of Other M on there (I'm assuming that was it because of how dickish Nintendo has gotten towards everything).

I'm waiting to see if there's any further proof on this (I've seen HipHopGamer get very "hot" on N4G despite him usually pulling news stories out of his ass without a shred of evidence to back up what he's saying) before making a judgment call on what I think of it.
 
Oct 19, 2007
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www.youtube.com
So if I'm reading this right, we just won't be able to monetize videos?

I'm fine with that. I just like posting LPs. And don't monetize them. (I get 0-5 views from each of them, so it wouldn't matter if I did lol.)

However, it also sounds like you may not even be able or post LPs from games from Sega, ND, etc. which would be bad. Hopefully thats not the case.
 

James93

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Nov 26, 2013
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So are the publishers pushing hard on this or is it Google being a bunch of assholes again?

It seems to be both parties. Google seems sick of playing around in a huge legal gray area. And well the publishers can do whatever they please as they own the copyright to the game. I'm interested to see what happens to networks that aren't owned by a large corporation
 

KoopaTheCasual

Junior Member
Jun 5, 2013
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Lame.

So I guess Xbone and PS4 will never get the upload to YouTube feature in the future.

That just occurred to me... Yea, doesn't seem likely at this point, anymore. Maybe that's why they mentioned it back at the reveals and haven't since. Devs probably caught wind of the situation and were like "wtf? no"
 

Mindlog

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Aug 31, 2007
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So are the publishers pushing hard on this or is it Google being a bunch of assholes again?
Wouldn't be surprised with either answer. I'm sure Google isn't too happy serving up video without sticking an ad on it. In turn they don't want to get ad revenue from something only to get sued about it later.
 

Tacitus_

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Dec 7, 2008
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REALLY big news if true will be a major blow back from this.
Some what understandable but really sad for the "good" YT folks out there making a living and providing a great service and fun for lots of people.

They're usually partnered with a network like Machinima or Polaris. I think this would probably hit the little guy the hardest.

But I concur with the OP, as long as TB isn't blowing a gasket over this I'm not believing it.
 

BizzyBum

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Apr 5, 2013
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So if I'm reading this right, we just won't be able to monetize videos?

I'm fine with that. I just like posting LPs. And don't monetize them. (I get 0-5 views from each of them, so it wouldn't matter if I did lol.)

Well, of course people like you and me are fine with it. lol

People like DSP.. it would ruin them. Even if it's OK to do without making money, most people wouldn't even bother then and there would be many less videos.
 

EightBitNate

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Mar 27, 2012
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That's actually pretty freakin stupid to have all those policies for different companies. Should've agreed on one like TakeTwo's.
 
Sep 5, 2012
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If Publishers don't want users to make money off their content, I don't see why users will protest. It's cool people like PewDiePie and WhiteBoy7ThSt are making a career out of gaming videos, but they should know their entire career can be easily stopped by a publisher telling them no. They know this and do it anyways, I don't see a reason to complain if/when it happens.
 

Duxxy3

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Nov 30, 2007
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Screw free advertising, we'll just blow another 100 million on marketing instead, and then complain when the game loses money.
 

phileep

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Jan 23, 2010
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This is absolutely happening. As an affiliate, I received a few emails recently about whats going on. Starting January, YouTube is going to check EVERY single video that users upload going forward. Partners don't get the auto pass that they used to get just by being partnered with someone. We have been told to schedule all of our videos if we want revenue out of the gate.

Additionally, come Monday, YouTube is implementing a new content ID scan which is going to essentially reevaluate everything across YouTube.

People are certainly going to be up in arms (and already are). What I'm curious about is how the major networks are going to protect their major money makers during this process.
 

Guevara

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Jul 27, 2009
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This is such a shame. I've really been getting into Let's Plays, especially for extremely impressive/challenge plays.
 

Velcro Fly

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May 10, 2012
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I used to really care about let's players and them not getting pushed around but I just can't bring myself to care anymore. If the one's I watch have to get a different job that isn't my problem. I've always felt the people who made the game should see ad revenue from this sort of thing despite it basically being free press for their game.

Also how soon does this spill over into the livestream arena. How soon are Twitch partners going to get hammered by this.
 

darkpower

Banned
Dec 10, 2008
639
0
0
Is it always 100% ad revenue for (uploader+partnership network) or (publisher)? If so why don't they implement some sharing system?

There might be an ulterior motive to this, and it has to do with how they might feel about someone showing a game in a negative light. This has happened with someone who only had 11 subscribers who got a video take down because he dared to make a video humorously showing the bugs from a game. Now granted, that game was what was formally known as the War Z, and those devs have misled everyone about their game to begin with, and then censored any criticisms that people might post about that game, so it's no surprise there. The issue is that they used the copyright system to get that shut down.

But I think they may be using it to try to keep unfavorable reviews from getting out there by keeping them from monetizing, at least. Derivative works are hard to argue against having a complete take down notification on because of the gray area that's involved, and I'm pretty sure that there will be major backlash on this, too (assuming it's true), especially if there is a behind the scenes reason they might want this to happen.
 

zainetor

Banned
Dec 26, 2012
2,007
0
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Well, of course people like you and me are fine with it. lol

People like DSP.. it would ruin them. Even if it's OK to do without making money, most people wouldn't even bother then and there would be many less videos.
At least good videos will have more exposure. Fuck pewdpie.
 
Sep 5, 2012
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Well, of course people like you and me are fine with it. lol

People like DSP.. it would ruin them. Even if it's OK to do without making money, most people wouldn't even bother then and there would be many less videos.
but what happened to "This is done because its fun and we enjoy it!". Oh yeah, its all a lie so they can be relatable to the viewers. They choose to make their life's finances revolve around using other people's work for monetization. Its a gray area and they know it, they really have to right to argue when the hammer gets thrown down. TotalBiscut, WoodysGamerTag, Syndicate, etc can all complain about it, but they know they have no right to monetize any of it.

If they really want to make money by doing this, just sign a contract with companies like RoosterTeeth does.
 

KoopaTheCasual

Junior Member
Jun 5, 2013
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This is not a rumor, and the YT networks are getting fucking destroyed.

I won't go into much more detail out of respect for my friend, but it's BAD.

Well that's just dandy...

I guess the Youtube Let's Play bubble is about to collapse. It swiftly took over the top spots of Youtube and provided massive exposure for tons of games, but oh wells.


Note: Publishers/devs have every right to take this stance, I just think they're potentially killing off a huge marketing arm, that was STILL rapidly growing. You can't have your cake and eat it, too.
 

AHA-Lambda

Member
Jul 19, 2011
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Screw free advertising, we'll just blow another 100 million on marketing instead, and then complain when the game loses money.

 

Nudull

Banned
Jun 28, 2012
10,335
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I'm expecting a huge backlash from this, if true. No way Google's getting away with that unscathed.
 

HariKari

Member
Jun 28, 2013
7,298
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I think it's crazy that people make money from doing video walkthroughs.

I think it's crazy publishers are cracking down on free publicity. They aren't going to put out walkthroughs, let's plays, guides, etc... so they are just doing this out of spite. It makes no sense in the long run.
 

Darkmakaimura

Member
Dec 12, 2008
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So if I'm reading this right, we just won't be able to monetize videos?

I'm fine with that. I just like posting LPs. And don't monetize them. (I get 0-5 views from each of them, so it wouldn't matter if I did lol.)

However, it also sounds like you may not even be able or post LPs from games from Sega, ND, etc. which would be bad. Hopefully thats not the case.
As someone who enjoys watching LP's from time to time, that's what bothers me.
 

JoshHood

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Mar 8, 2012
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If Publishers don't want users to make money off their content, I don't see why users will protest. It's cool people like PewDiePie and WhiteBoy7ThSt are making a career out of gaming videos, but they should know their entire career can be easily stopped by a publisher telling them no. They know this and do it anyways, I don't see a reason to complain if/when it happens.
Totally agree. I get that these are good people doing good content, but they are making money off other people's commercial products, and they can't expect that to be an iffy area.

If they start cracking down on proper produced content I'll join the backlash, but for just commentated gameplay and the like or rehosted trailers, I get pubs wanting that back.