New set of rules allows Let's Players and streamers to make money
Microsoft has officially given its stance on Let's Play and game streaming videos, and it's good news for players who like to capture their gameplay.
The company has stated that players who make gameplay footage available through either YouTube or Twitch are allowed to monetise those videos with ads, as long as they follow a new set of Game Content Usage Rules.
We're encouraging you to create and redistribute your items," the new rules state. "You may post the items on your own site or you may link to a third-party site containing your Items if you'd prefer to store them there, so long as the third-party site does not break any of these rules."
There are a total of 16 rules in place that must be followed. While most of these are common sense (no pornographic, discriminatory or illegal content), there are some specific ones that may be of interest to YouTube and Twitch users, including:
"You can't sell or otherwise earn any compensation from your item, including through advertisements in the item. This means you can't charge money in exchange for your item, post it on a site that requires subscription or other fees to view the item, or post it on a page you use to sell other items or services."
"You may make your item available on Youtube or Twitch and participate in programs on those sites that allow you to earn revenue from ads displayed in connection with your item."
"You may use the item on a page where you ask for optional donation requests."
"Your Items may not use the name of the Microsoft Game in their title. For example, we don't object to "Red vs. Blue". We don't object to "Operation Chastity". But we do object to "Halo [insert the title of your Item here]". We want to make sure consumers don't get confused."
"If you want to use the soundtracks or audio effects from the original game, we often license those from or to third parties and don't always have the rights to pass them on to you. If we do, we'll let you know. For example, we might mention on the community website for a particular game whether you have these rights, so you'd do well to check. If we don't let you know, you need permission from a third party, especially for games with licensed music. But we'll confirm right here that the music from Halo 3 is available for your use in non-profit ventures thanks to an arrangement with O'Donnell/Salvatori, Inc, composers of this iconic theme."
Microsoft's rules also state that players must post the following disclaimer somewhere it can be found: "[Name of the Microsoft Game] © Microsoft Corporation. [The title of your Item] was created under Microsoft's "Game Content Usage Rules" using assets from [Name of the Microsoft Game], and it is not endorsed by or affiliated with Microsoft."