Phil Fish, the creator of Fez, took to Twitter recently in an attempt to persuade the general population that creating content for video games and placing them on YouTube in order to make money should be classed as illegal. He went on to say that YouTubers should share the revenue made from their videos with the developers of the game, after all it’s their work.
“YouTubers should have to pay out a huge portion of their revenue to the developers from which they steal all their content. [Ad] revenue should be shared with developers. This should be built into YouTube. Anything else is basically piracy.”
“If you generate money from putting my content on your channel, you owe me money. Simple as that. If you buy a movie, are you then allowed to stream the entirety of it publicly for people to watch for free? No, because that’s illegal.
“Systems are in place to prevent that. But buy Fez, put ALL of it on YouTube, turn on ads, make money from it and that’s TOTALLY FINE. And the developer should in NO WAY be compensated for their work being freely distributed to the world. Right. Makes sense.”
Soon after making the claims, Fish tweeted “Nevermind” and has since made his account private, although his Twitter account now seems to have been deleted. Since the debate Super Meat Boy developer Edmund McMillen has jumped on board and spoke out against Fish and his absurd comments, saying:
“I could see if I wrote some grand story in my game that acted like a movie being upset for people “showing my movie” via YouTube. I guess I don’t care as much because I never write my games like movies, I don’t think watching someone play my games does anything more than make people want to PLAY my games.. Because my games were designed to be enjoyed through gameplay… but whatever.”
“I can understand both sides, I personally see it as advertising especially when lets players have a lot of fun with the game. Games aren’t at all the same as movies or music.. So it’s a bit fuzzy. I think a good middle ground would be simply getting permission. If people don’t want you showing off your game I think you should have the ability to say don’t post video of my work… but it doesn’t bother me personally.”
Personally, I’d have to say that McMillen is correct, 99% of the experience when it comes to games is playing it for yourself, on YouTube all you’re doing is watching. The majority of the time I find myself watching YouTube to see peoples views on a game I wish to purchase and most of the time I will end up buying the game for myself thanks to Let’s Play and review videos. What are your thoughts?