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Nintendo to launch YouTube affiliate program

Wii U maker to share advertising revenues with video content creators

Nintendo is moving to a less adversarial stance toward YouTube content creators making videos of their games. The company today confirmed plans for a new affiliate program that would see Nintendo and YouTube video creators split the revenues from clips featuring its games.

"Nintendo has been permitting the use of Nintendo copyrighted material in videos on YouTube under appropriate circumstances," the company said in a statement. "Advertisements may accompany those videos, and in keeping with previous policy that revenue is shared between YouTube and Nintendo. In addition, for those who wish to use the material more proactively, we are preparing an affiliate program in which a portion of the advertising profit is given to the creator. Details about this affiliate program will be announced in the future."

Just over a year ago, Nintendo targeted YouTube video creators making money off videos featuring its titles, filing "content ID" claims against them. Those claims gave the Mario maker control over the revenue from those clips, which was split with YouTube, but not the user who created and uploaded it in the first place. At the time, affected video creator Zach Scott called the policy "backwards," saying it discouraged video makers from effectively marketing Nintendo's products for them.

"Since I started my gaming channel, I've played a lot of games. I love Nintendo, so I've included their games in my line-up," Scott said at the time. "But until their claims are straightened out, I won't be playing their games. I won't because it jeopardizes my channel's copyright standing and the livelihood of all LPers."

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Brendan Sinclair avatar

Brendan Sinclair

Managing Editor

Brendan joined GamesIndustry.biz in 2012. Based in Toronto, Ontario, he was previously senior news editor at GameSpot in the US.