Nintendo Excludes Smash Bros From YouTube Partner Program

Pokemon and Bayonetta also banned from ad revenue sharing scheme.

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Nintendo has excluded the entire lineage of Super Smash Bros games from its Content Creators Program, meaning that YouTube personalities who wanted to upload videos of the series will not be eligible for a cut of Nintendo’s ad revenue.

Also blocked are third-party games licenced by Nintendo, such as Pokemon and Bayonetta.

The surprise omission comes just days after Nintendo launched its YouTube revenue-sharing initiative, which gives a slice of ad revenue to people who upload videos of certain Wii U, 3DS and legacy console games.

However, the scheme itself triggered controversy upon its announcement, specifically because it benefits those who create positive Nintendo coverage, and due to Nintendo's unusual decision to regulate its YouTube ad revenue.

Although copyright holders have default control over the distribution of ad revenue on videos featuring their games, most publishers and developers take a hands-off approach, allowing the YouTube channel owner to take the ad royalties.

Yet Nintendo’s new Content Creators scheme means it will take all ad revenue (after Google’s mandatory cut), and only split the earnings with videos that it approves. While the approval process itself could take up to 72 hours, Nintendo also notes that videos will need to be free of characters and IP that it does not own.

Now the publisher has published a “white List” of games it will approve, with Super Smash Bros for Wii U being the most glaring omission.

Felix Kjellberg, the creator of the most subscribed channel on YouTube, recently published a blog listing his concerns with Nintendo's entire approach to video monetisation.

"What Nintendo are missing out on completely is the free exposure and publicity that they get from YouTube," he wrote.

"What better way to sell or market a game, than from watching someone else (that you like) playing it and enjoying themselves?"

He concluded: "I think this is a slap in the face to the YouTube channels that does focus on Nintendo game exclusively. The people who have helped and showed passion for Nintendo's community are the ones left in the dirt the most. There’s just so many games out there to play. Nintendo games just went to the bottom of that list."

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