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Nintendo is finally permitting people to earn money from videos on YouTube that feature its games, but the program is already off to a rocky start.

Last week, the publisher revealed the Nintendo Creator’s Program. This service enables YouTube video makers to sign up on a Nintendo site to start earning ad revenue from their uploads. But a week later, many people are still waiting for Nintendo to approve their first set of submitted YouTube creations despite the company’s promise to process videos in “two to three days.” The game publisher has acknowledged the problem, and it says that it’s still working on getting caught up. Game videos on YouTube is a big business, as that category regularly has the biggest audience of viewers and subscribers.

“Due to your enthusiasm for the program, we’re receiving a higher volume of applications to register channels and videos than expected,” reads an update on the Creator’s Program website. “It is taking longer than we anticipated to confirm the applications. We appreciate your patience as we work through them as quickly as possible.”

We’ve asked Nintendo for more, and we’ll update this post with any other details we get.


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Individuals looking to join the Nintendo Creator’s Program have two options. They can either submit their entire channel to Nintendo. In that case, the publisher would take 30 percent of the ad revenue, which comes after YouTube takes its 40 percent cut. It also applies to all videos on a channel, whether those videos have something to do with Mario, Zelda, or your grandmother. Alternatively, you can submit individual videos, which will get you a 60 percent cut of the ad revenue leaving 40 percent for Nintendo. Again, this split is done after YouTube takes its 40 percent.

Some established YouTube creators rebelled against this proposed deal because they feel that Nintendo is overstepping its bounds. It also puts people who critique Nintendo games in business with the publisher.

Despite any concerns about the Nintendo Creator’s Program, however, many have signed up to start making money. And it has obviously overwhelmed the infrastructure Nintendo has put in place to handle the service. This has led the publisher to ask creators to pay closer attention to the submission guidelines.

“We are only able to register videos that contain game titles specified on the list of supported games,” reads the Creator’s Program website’s most recent update. “We are also only able to register channels that contain game titles specified on the list of supported games.”

Nintendo posted an extensive whitelist of games that it has said are OK to monetize on YouTube. You can read the list for yourself, since it’s far too long to include here.

For people who did want to submit their entire YouTube channels to Nintendo, the company is now saying that it will have to turn down your application if you have any uploads featuring games not on the whitelist. That includes non-Nintendo games.

“If a video within your channel contains game titles outside of the list of supported games, please remove it from the channel before registering,” reads the website. “If you are unable to remove the video from your channel, please register each video that contains game titles on the list of supported games individually.”

For people who have already submitted their channels, Nintendo is giving you two weeks to delete any video featuring games not on the whitelist.

“If the videos are not removed from the channel within this time, your channel will not be registered with the program,” reads the website. “You may resubmit your channel for registration at a later date.”

This is kind of turning into the corporate bureaucratic nightmare that many were expecting. And it’s further making the point that Nintendo doesn’t really understand YouTube or the Internet.

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