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Nintendo And 4J Studios At Odds Over Minecraft Mario Mashup YouTube Videos

by Mike Futter on May 20, 2016 at 09:42 AM

Minecraft’s evolution this console generation has been a fascinating thing to watch. With over 100 million players, it isn’t hard to find new videos on YouTube created on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and most recently, Wii U.

In fact, the version made for Nintendo’s home console recently got an update that brings Mario and friends into Mojang’s blocky sandbox. Unfortunately for those posting videos on YouTube, Nintendo is issuing copyright claims on videos featuring the Mario mash-up.

The rub here is that Minecraft’s console platform developer 4J Studios, was told that there would be no issue when the pack launched.

The day before that tweet, 4J assured a fan that Nintendo would look into the matter and address it. Given that there has apparently been no movement two days later and 4J felt compelled to follow up with the statement above, it seems things are still in progress.

We followed up with Nintendo yesterday, but have yet to receive a comment. That leaves us with Nintendo’s stated policies on monetization that caught fire in mid-2013.

Nintendo became a YouTube partner in February 2013, at which point it began taking advantage of the platform’s ContentID copyright enforcement system. The result is that Nintendo has allowed videos to remain on YouTube, but creators cannot monetize them. Nintendo effectively short-stops any revenue from ads, redirecting it to themselves.

In early 2015, the company piloted a “Creators” program that allowed authorized creators to earn a split of the revenue. Nintendo claims 30 percent of earnings for authorized channels and 40 percent for individual videos. 

We’ll update should Nintendo provide a statement on the matter or should additional information emerge.

Note: We've added some details related to a statement made by 4J on May 18.

[Source: 4J Studios]


Our Take
4J and Nintendo need to work this out and open up communication. At this point, the dispute between the two is public. What should be and what is are very visibly in conflict. Nintendo’s policies have been under fire before, but now this is directly impacting a Microsoft-owned property, making for an interesting butting of heads.