Nintendo harming itself with restrictive YouTube policies (opinion)

In addition to its backwards logic on online gaming, Nintendo is also making some mistakes with YouTube. For one, it just seems like a needless hassle to sign up for the Nintendo Creators Program in order to post “Let’s Play” videos.

Now, to take things one step further, YouTube live streaming has become removed from the program.

“Live streaming on YouTube falls outside the scope of the Nintendo Creators Program. You cannot broadcast content on YouTube Live from the account you have registered to the Nintendo Creators Program.”

“If you plan to broadcast content on YouTube Live, you have a couple of options. First, you can broadcast content on YouTube Live from a channel that is not registered to the Nintendo Creators Program. Or, you can cancel your channel’s registration to the Nintendo Creators Program and instead, register your videos containing Nintendo’s IP to the program separately.”

What is the logic for this?

It is possible Nintendo wishes to avoid people cursing live while playing their games. Because of the program, the company basically “endorses” the videos and channels partnered with. From their point of view, they simply want to keep a clean image and avoid trouble. Think about the recent PewDiePie controversies relating to bigotry and racism.

Still, Nintendo is doing more harm than good by taking out live streaming from its program.

If Nintendo wants to avoid endorsing channels where the content creator uses profanity or does anything else unsuitable, they should give up the program. Let YouTubers upload monetized “Let’s Play” videos or live streams without needing to sign up for a separate thing where part of the revenue goes to Nintendo.

Nintendo would create a lot of goodwill by giving up the Creators Program. Other gaming companies do not care so much if YouTubers upload their game footage. Even if those companies do not directly endorse or approve of the footage, most of them will not take the videos down under “fair use.” In addition, it makes the company look less greedy to not care.

For example, think about EA’s YouTube policy as of February 2016.

“EA appreciates the passion that players have for our games, and we’re always excited to see the creativity that comes from our community. EA does not object to fair uses of video footage or screenshots on video sharing sites, including YouTube channels that are commercialized, as long as the footage is a version of the game that we have released to the public.”

Of all companies, EA actually sounds like they are the good guys here. Any gamer can read that statement and believe “Hey, this multi-million dollar company might be on my side.” At least when it comes to YouTube, EA is reasonable.

But, Nintendo is different. Those guys need to control everything, and want part of the revenue too. They opted for a long, draconian process where each video under the Creators Program “can regularly take up to three business days … to be reviewed and finalized.” Their games might be better than EA, but their YouTube policies are not “cool” at all.

Plus, whether or not gamers curse on YouTube, content creators are still showing themselves having a great time playing Nintendo products. That is the best advertisement any company can have for their video games.

Nintendo is behind the times when it comes to the Internet. The House of Mario would do well to ease up a little.

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