The title of Felix Kjellberg’s blog says it all with the air-quotes: Nintendo “sharing” YouTube Ad Revenue. With the recent announcement of Nintendo instituting its new YouTube sharing policy, Pewdiepie is speaking out against the major games publisher and developer.
First off all, they have every right to do this and any other developer / publisher have as well. There’d be no “let’s play” without the game to play. And we (YouTubers) are humble to this fact.
But what they are missing out on completely is the free exposure and publicity that they get from YouTube / YouTubers. What better way to sell / market a game, than from watching someone else (that you like) playing it and enjoying themselves?
Truly said, Pewdiepie! For those out of the loop, Nintendo has always been a stickler when it comes to YouTube and let’s play content. The old guard of Japanese corporations in the video game industry, Nintendo is stubborn to new things, and avoids change like the plague. Which is why their reactions to people uploading let’s play content to YouTube has thrown the company for a loop. Where some see free marketing, like Pewdiepie, others see rights being infringed and content being “stolen.” Which is obviously not the case, as the large majority of the industry has deemed let’s play as useful and good for business, as it has shown in boosts of sales for many developers.
Not for Nintendo, who has consistently dropped a heavy gavel on YouTubers in the past. The famed developer has frequently copyright striked YouTubers for using content they deemed “inappropriate.” What is inappropriate? Who knows but Nintendo, who seems to throw out these claims and strikes randomly to anyone they see fit, from huge Youtube stars like AngryJoe to tiny little nobody’s with only a few subscribers to their names. For those who receive a claim, they simply lose ad revenue, which may seem like an innocent loss to some, but is the different between eating and not eating for content creators who are essentially artists surviving off of the ad revenue of the games that made them famous. Copyright strikes are more severe, as Youtube operates on its “three strikes and you’re out” policy. Hypothetically, if Pewdiepie had Nintendo games on his channel that Nintendo deemed as a copyright violation, they could strike three of his videos overnight, and Pewdiepie’s entire channel would vanish from the internet forever. Moreover, if you get struck down off of YouTube, you can’t come back, as this would be a violation of YouTube/Google’s terms-of-service.
Harsh, Nintendo! This is especially damaging to YouTubers who built their entire channel and personality around a Nintendo monoculture. Totalbiscuit in this case agrees with Pewdiepie, as he recently released his own damning video of Nintendo’s new policies by letting people know that now is the time to diversify YouTube content immediately to ensure let’s player’s own survival. Totalbiscuit goes on to say in his video that if this same affiliate program Nintendo is launching applies to video game reviews of Nintendo games, it would qualify as a “corporate shakedown,” and could potentially lead to the first court cases on let’s play content. If such a hypothetical court case happened, it could be disastrous for the online gaming industry, dominated by YouTube and Twitch, as well as any and every gamer who likes to use or watch content on those services. That doesn’t even begin to mention the other issues content creators face when posting content on YouTube, like what happened to Pewdiepie over the last year.
But with great power comes great responsibility, and the often silly and screechy personality that is Felix Kjellberg is using his influence in the industry to make his feelings very clear to Nintendo. His two points: 1) Nintendo, quit that; 2) YouTubers, stop playing Nintendo games.
I also think this is a slap in the face to the YouTube channels that does focus on Nintendo game exclusively. The people who have helped and showed passion for Nintendo’s community are the ones left in the dirt the most.
And finally, when there’s just so many games out there to play. Nintendo games just went to the bottom of that list. Even if more publishers starts implementing this idea of sharing revenue. Then fine, there’s always going to be plenty of games out there, ready to become the next “Mienkraft” – Sounds cheesy, but it’s true.
So, you should reconsider this decision Nintendo. (◕‿◕✿)
You heard it first from the most inspirational YouTuber himself. As a let’s player and streamer myself, I actively avoid content by developers who don’t approve of let’s play content. As Pewdiepie says, with so many games in the market from developers and publishers who see the benefits of monetized YouTube content – which is essentially free advertising – there is a gold mine of games that I can play at any time and enjoy myself with that aren’t going to get me in legal trouble. Companies who are consistently harsh against streamers and let’s players aren’t worth my time, because their statements that they don’t like the content that I want to play is a declaration that they don’t value me as one of their many consumers. Their loss, not mine.
YouTube and Twitch are still ever-changing places, which are somewhere along a grey line of “legality.” Situations like this are ones that bring this larger discussion into center stage, and when the biggest of names in the let’s play and video reviewing sphere like Pewdiepie and Totalbiscuit are weighing in on the issue, everyone who loves watching this content online should pay close attention.