After sitting on this for a week or so since this whole thing blew up I'm gonna weigh my opinions on the whole matter.
As a preface I know that my opinion on this isn't going to matter for a lot of people since I am known around here as a "Nintendo Defense Force" fangirl fanatic/whatever.
However I'm not coming from the position of a Nintendo fan. I'm coming from the perspective of an Illustrator who's entire money making career revolves around knowing copyright and what constitutes as Fair Use.
First off, let's get the facts straight:
1. Nintendo DID NOT remove Angry Joe's video on Mario Party 10. Angry Joe himself took it down.
2. Nintendo DID NOT issue a copyright strike to Angry Joe's channel. They made a monetary claim on it. Meaning that they simply took all ad revenue money from his video. However his channel standing was in no way shape or form affected by this claim.
3. Angry Joe was aware for months now about Nintendo's policy in regards to how they will deal with Let's Plays. In fact he was one of the first major Youtubers to speak out against the Nintendo Partnership Program. So he was very aware of what was going to happen if he uploaded the Mario Party 10 video in it's current state.
Now that those things are out of the way I personally think Angry Joe was being a petulant child over this, and quite frankly it disgusts me that his blatant publicity stunt worked with overwhelming success and every single one of you guys making this shit headline news for days fell for this shit so hard it's not even fucking funny. This non-news stories hit the front page of practically every news outlet, and his rant videos netted him more ad revenue money than if Nintendo had simply left him alone on the matter. So Joe- I think you should be thanking Nintendo for giving YOU the free exposure and ad revenue to your business because without their iron grip on their IP's in regards to copyright, your 1 million plus rant videos wouldn't of come to fruition and you wouldn't be raking in the big money and the butt load of subscribers you gained off of Nintendo's policies. And I know you'll continue to do these rant videos about Nintendo's "injustice" so long as you know it will get your 10X the amount of views you doing Nintendo LP's (yes all two videos of them) will ever net you in a lifetime. Your quite the dramatic business man aren't you?
Secondly, I have an extreme beef with the other argument you levied against Nintendo that you "invested" $900.00 into Nintendo products and that Nintendo is actively barring you from "sharing the experience" on how much fun they had with Mario Party 10 with your viewers.
Let's just get to the first part of this. You investing $900.00 to Nintendo products is a fucking lie. You lied. You didn't invest any fucking money into Nintendo products. That Wii U console and it's games were given to you as a donation from your fanbase who wanted to see you play Nintendo games because apparently you couldn't afford, or couldn't be assed to afford the cheapest damn console in entire current gen gaming industry. Not only that, since WHEN did you ever think that your entitled to certain treatments and benefits because you put in X amount of money in any gaming company. This is one of the rare times I'm gonna agree with him, but ReviewTechUSA was right on the money on this point. The fact that you feel entitled to certain treatments because you BUY company products is scummy as shit and is exactly the kind of corruption shenanigans that people don't like traditional viewers for for this exact reason. If anything, you owe your NINTENDO fans, Nintendo reviews/LP's because they put THEIR money into giving you this console specifically for that reason. So you can get the hell out of here with that statement.
As for the next point- Joe, don't try to play the layman "one of us" crap here. Nintendo didn't bar you from sharing any of your experiences with your fans. You could of left the video up. Nothing was stopping you from doing that. Not Nintendo, not Youtube, nor any fear of Copyright strike against your channel. You purposefully took it down because you couldn't make any money off of it. That's what it boils down to. You couldn't get ad money out of it, so you took down the video and threw a tantrum. You cared about the money. Not the fans who would of enjoyed the video regardless.
The bottom line here is that you, Angry Joe, thought your 2 million subscribers and over 300 million views on Youtube would grant you some special snowflake immunity, when Nintendo made it very fucking clear that they don't care if your Pewdiepie or some random schmuck with 10 subs. You break their policies, and you lose the right to monetize your Nintendo videos. If you want to monetize your Nintendo videos you either join the Nintendo partnership where you can individually do a 60/40 split (Nintendo takes 40% and you take the rest of it), make an entirely separate channel for Nintendo and register it under the partnership for a 70/30 split, or you email Nintendo personally and make a deal with them. How else do you think channels like GameXplain can get away with half the shit they do and still monetize videos?
So sorry Angry Joe- you gotta follow the rules like everybody else.
Now let's get into the messy and highly mis understood topic of copyright- and to extension Fair Use.
I hate getting into these discussions because quite frankly not a lot of people sans those heavily into this shit have any goddamn clue what they are talking about but still pass off their misunderstanding of it as fact.
Most of Angry Joes' content does indeed fall under Fair Use. Most of his videos are 15-30 minute long video game critiques where he utilizes a lot of special effects, skits, and his own brand of comedy to get his point of the game across. Keep in mind that he- like all other major video review sites like Polygon, IGN, Kotaku, etc. uses clips from the game to make his point and that's about it. So of course when X game dev copyright claims Angry Joe's reviews and tries to get it taken down, he has a lot of leverage to stand on, while the devs do not. Joe in this instance is very clearly protected under Fair Use. Because he made a video that was very specifically a critique of a piece of media. Likewise if he were to do the same with his Mario Party 10 video, Nintendo would probably not of bothered with it either (it seems that they get you with the audio and not the content itself, but again you can easily negotiate this with Nintendo.).
This however is not what Joe did. Joe uploaded a raw 5 hour long video of him playing Mario Party 10 with his friends fresh off of Twitch. Unless some Let's Player or group of Let's Players finally put their money where they mouth is and take Nintendo to court over this (which we all know will never happen because they know that they will get completely demolished in the courts.) Let's Plays are in a really murky area of Fair Use that leans a lot more heavily towards Copyright Infringement. Especially if you are making any sort of monetary revenue off of them.
This is what Joe did. He made a Let's Play, and monetized it. Under Fair Use you cannot under any circumstances monetize works that contain copyrighted material. It doesn't matter where the money is coming from. If you are going to claim Fair Use, then you better not be having any sort of monetary gain coming in. Yes that includes ad/viewership revenue. The fact that many Let's Players are angry at Nintendo for claiming any sort of monetary cut in the first place is because they do these Let's Plays with the intention OF making money regardless of the copyright material in it. In an attempt to bypass this obvious breach in not only Copyright law, but also Fair Use law, this is where the bullshit starts flying in the claims that Let's Plays are "transformative works" and therefore are their "own" thing.
First and foremost in regards to the right the consumer has when they purchase a game. Like with films, when you purchase a videogame you agree to the ToS that you are purchasing this game for your own personal use, on your own personal console (or any console you have access to that can play this game.) Nothing more, nothing less. Nowhere in the contract does it say that once you buy it you can do whatever the fuck you want with it, and share the game either through experience or distribution with anyone else.
Let's Plays are about as transformative as me ripping my copy of Star Wars, putting my voice over it sounding like Kermit the Frog and then pausing at certain parts of the film to take snack and bathroom breaks. Not only would that not fly on a Youtube policy level, but it certainly wouldn't fly if I took it to the courts, and for the most part, a lot of movie buffs who do upload on Youtube understand this, and- this may surprise you- DON'T upload the full movie on their channels with only their voice commentary as the only original thing. They do single-to multi part video critiques of a film with only snippets of the actual film in question being used for the expressed purpose of proving their point in a critique.
Now you may be asking "Well if I buy a set of tools like Photoshop do you expect me to pay Adobe a cut of the money each time I make work on there?" Of course not. Not to mention that you are comparing apples to oranges again. When I purchase a license from Adobe in their ToS in regards to using their software I agree that this license if for my personal use only on my personal computer only. By buying this product I am allowed to not only create works in Adobe products, but also to sell them for my own profit. I am NOT however allowed to take my license of Adobe and then proceed to put that same license on 50 computers so everyone else can use it for free. Nor am I allowed to make tutorial videos on Adobe Products and then put in links to illegal download sites or places where you can get my licensing credentials so that YOU TOO can use Photoshop for free without having to invest a penny for it.
Another arguing point that people make is that your viewers don't come for the game that is being played, it comes for the person playing that game. Yeah in a people are coming to you because of YOU the Let's Player personality, but I'm calling horseshit in your claims that they ONLY come because of you. Unless of course you are Pewdiepie where he can make videos that revolve around him kissing squirrls and still make mad money on that video. Most of us are not, and never will be Pewdiepie. Your success monetary success as a Let's Player is heavily reliant on companies allowing you to use their copyrighted material- regardless on whether or not it's technically legal- and letting you have free reign with it. It says a lot that when the biggest reason for many Let's Players hating and even so much as being AFRAID of Nintendo being extremely adamant on taking the opposite stance on this BECAUSE they fear other companies who were once lax on this can see that they too can actually stretch their copyright muscle power and do the same thing and demand monetary compensation too shows just how much Let's Players in the end rely on companies being super lax on their IP in regards to Youtube.
The bottom line is this- Let's Players are only important in the grand scheme of things to indie games and smaller studios who do not have any/ or as strong of a marketing arm to promote themselves.
People want to say that Nintendo of Japan are simply archaic, they are behind the times, they are slow on everything. Honestly, I think they are very aware of the issue and they literally. Give. Zero. Fucks. End of story. They don't care about Joe and his two million subs, they don't care about Pewdiepie, they don't care about Let's Plays. Nintendo- among other big players, have a strong enough marketing department that they can do all the heavylifting themselves. Nintendo can and will utilize the internet to distribute their products how they see fit and if Let's Players aren't on that agenda then cry them a river. They don't care.
All Nintendo has to do to catch the gaminc communities attention is say "Nintendo Direct" with the day and the time and everyone who even remotely cares about gaming either have their ears open for gaming outlets like Gamespot or Destructoid to summarize the stream, or their asses are plastered on their seats ready to view the thing live. That's also not to mention that they have started recently doing the increasingly popular Nintendo Treehouse Livestreams which are very much similar to regular Let's Plays and shows that Nintendo of Japan are very aware of how positive it is for them. But they want to do it on THEIR terms, not Angry Joe's terms, not Jim's terms, not Pewdiepies terms, or any other Youtubers terms. Their terms. You don't like it, then enjoy your Nintendo games at your own leisure and don't post on Youtube.
But for the love of God don't go and say "well they are turning down free advertisement." Actually they aren't. After all they didn't take down your videos, they didn't say you can't upload future ones. If you are a "free" advertiser for them then that implies that you are advertising their games with no expectation of monetary compensation. Whether or not that entails Nintendo paying you, or Google/Youtube paying you. But that isn't what you want. You want to get PAID for doing FREE advertisement ala playing the entirety of copyrighted material with your voice over it and making money off of that.
It just doesn't work that way, it never worked that way, and you all know it doesn't work that way. That's why people like to play the "moral right" argument as opposed to the legal one. Let's Players just lucked out that history worked in their favor when for once, EA, Ubisoft, and a bunch of other big players rolled on their backs and let gaming Youtubers do whatever the fuck they want as opposed to take an iron grip on things.
The rest of the Youtube Copyright entertainment community would like to welcome your super belated arrival to the "da rulz" club. Your free ride is over and you actually have to come face to face with how the law works for everyone else in the entertainment industry. I'm sure they will have a few spare drinks and pizzas left for the first 10 people to get to the concessions stands first.