YouTube star-gamers confess to taking money from publishers

YouTube Logo

Some online personalities are being paid to cover certain games on their YouTube channels.

A recent survey conducted by Gamasutra,asked 141 YouTube gaming video posters what they thought about the ethics of YouTube reviews.

From the YouTubers interviewed 30% (42 people) have over 5000 subscribers. From within those 42 people 11 (26%) admitted to "receiving money directly or indirectly from a game dev/publisher for recording videos of their games," with another two saying they "preferred not to say."

The survey also notes that of those who took part with less than 5000 subscribers only 2% had received money from a publisher.

Forty per cent of those who took the survey said they thought this practice was acceptable although some added that it should be disclosed to viewers if a video shows a game a reviewer is being paid to play.

According to a legal commentator responding to the survey, "Generally speaking, if an advertiser or a marketer is paying someone to write favorable reviews, the reviewer needs to disclose that and that disclosure should be clear and conspicuous, and should be upfront and easy to see where the viewer won't miss”

In a video posted earlier this year from YouTube star Boogie2988 it’s already been confirmed that reviewers being paid to play is commonplace. This confession came out following revelations that Microsoft was paying Youtube reviewers to speak preferably about Xbox. The video is below


What do ou make of the results of Gamasutra’s survey? Do you think it’s acceptable for YouTubers to be paid to play as long as they’re admitting this is the case? Or, do you take the line that the whole process is unfair and one-sided and ultimately leads to reviews of games that the devs could afford to bribe gamers to talk about?

Register for HITC Gaming Digest