Please support Game Informer. Print magazine subscriptions are less than $2 per issue


Microsoft Puts Foot Down To Stop Paid Advertisements Using Minecraft

by Mike Futter on May 31, 2016 at 11:10 AM

Microsoft has had about enough of people using Minecraft for advertising purposes. An update to the game’s commercial usage guidelines lays down the law regarding what advertising agencies and other corporations can’t do using Minecraft.

Companies may not build a server or mod that promotes their products. An example of this might be a restaurant or other commercial establishment built within Minecraft.

Production companies are not permitted to create Minecraft versions of their television or movie properties or otherwise use the game to expand their own lore. They are not allowed to create a movie trailer using the game either.

“We want to empower our community to make money from their creativity, but we’re not happy when the selling of an unrelated product becomes the purpose of a Minecraft mod or server,” writes Mojang’s director of creative communications Owen Hill. “That doesn’t feel right, or more importantly, fun. The new rules are an attempt to stop these things from happening.”

In December, Verizon hired Minecraft YouTuber SethBling to assist with creating a working cell phone within Minecraft. You can see that in a video that also features popular Minecraft personality "Captain Sparklez."

This won’t impact server and video monetization. Fans are still permitted to build brand-related things in the game, too. So if you really love a particular restaurant or store, you won’t be prohibited from doing that yourself. Despite that, a number of Minecraft streamers and YouTubers are speaking out against the changes.

[Source: Mojang]


Our Take
It’s easy to see why other brands would want to latch onto Minecraft’s popularity. But to do so without permission is just a lawsuit waiting to happen. Now that Microsoft and Mojang have put it in print, it should be clear that proper licensing is required for anything like what’s described above.