Nintendo updated its website today with new Community Tournament Guidelines. Although the article isn’t up yet in North America, since it’s been posted in Europe and Japan, the content should hold the same for North America as well.
Nintendo says that its guidelines are for those “hosting not-for-profit, small scale community tournaments (Community Tournaments) involving games for which Nintendo owns the copyright (Nintendo games).” The company advises fans to become familiar with them if they plan on setting up a tournament.
There’s a lot that’s here – the post goes into conditions under which footage or images can be used, what needs to be done on-site and on tournament websites as well as other promotional materials, stipulations organizers adhere to, and more. You can find the full rundown below.
Thank you for sharing your passion for Nintendo’s games, characters and worlds. Nintendo cares about the community and would like to support individuals who want to celebrate that passion by creating memorable co-operative and competitive play experiences. At the same time, we want to ensure that fans who are doing so are engaging with our games, characters, and worlds in a way that positively supports other fans, players and Nintendo.
In that spirit, we have created guidelines for individual Organisers to follow when hosting not-for-profit, small scale community tournaments (Community Tournaments) involving games for which Nintendo owns the copyright (Nintendo games). Please familiarize yourself with the guidelines below before planning a Community Tournament.
Community Tournaments may be operated by individuals (Organisers) for individuals participating in tournaments (Participants) and for individuals viewing tournaments (Spectators) provided that these guidelines are followed:
The Community Tournament is small-scale and not for commercial profit
- Community Tournaments may not generate commercial revenue except as permitted by these guidelines.
- Tournaments may include up to 200 Participants for in-person tournaments or up to 300 Participants for online tournaments.
- Organisers that have reached the legal age of majority in their jurisdiction may collect entry fees from Participants in an amount not more than the equivalent of £18 / €20 per person.
- Entry fees collected from Participants may be used for covering the costs of organising the tournament and towards prizing.
- Organisers that have reached the legal age of majority in their jurisdiction may provide goods and services to Participants as prizes.
- No prize may exceed a market value of £4,500 / €5,000 in total or include the prohibited items outlined in Q17 below.
- The total value of cash prizing a single Organiser can offer through Community Tournaments in a 12-month period must be no more than the equivalent of £9,000 / €10,000.
- For in-person Community Tournaments, Organisers that have reached the legal age of majority in their jurisdiction may collect an admission fee from Spectators of not more than the equivalent of £14 / €15 per person.
- Admission fees collected from Spectators must be used solely for the purpose of covering costs of organising the tournament and not used towards prizing.
- Collecting fees from Spectators for online Community Tournaments is not permitted under any circumstances.
- Organisers collecting fees must publicly disclose all accounting related to the costs of hosting the event promptly, including entry fees, admission fees and prizes distributed by posting them on a website and/or on social media accessible to everyone.
- When hosting a Community Tournament, Organisers may not receive goods, services, money, etc., from third parties as sponsors.
- Only with the prior consent from Participants, can Organisers monetise posting of videos, still images, etc., related to Community Tournaments on personal accounts, in line with the Nintendo Game Content Guidelines for Online Video & Information Sharing Platforms. The total amount of revenue a single Organiser earns in a 12-month period through these activities should be no more than the equivalent of £9,000 / €10,000.
The tournament may use Nintendo game footage or images under the following conditions:
- Organisers may show footage of tournament gameplay at in-person Community Tournament venues for games officially launched by Nintendo.
- Organisers may use captured footage or screenshots of Nintendo games for any announcement materials of the Community Tournament so long as the game has officially launched.
The Community Tournament is not affiliated with Nintendo and makes no use of Nintendo trademarks or IP except as permitted by these guidelines
- Community Tournaments may not falsely imply Nintendo is associated with, sponsoring or otherwise affiliated with the event, and may not be presented as “official” or “endorsed” by Nintendo.
- The names of Community Tournaments may not contain Nintendo trademarks or IP, such as Nintendo’s company name, logo, product or service names such as game titles, names adopted from Nintendo games such as character names. This includes any shortened or modified uses of Nintendo trademarks or IP.
- Other than referencing the game name to indicate which game is being played at the Community Tournament, Community Tournaments may not make use of Nintendo trademarks or IP, including logos and character art as a part of Community Tournament activity.
The games used must have been officially launched or service has officially begun in the region where the Community Tournament is taking place
- Pirated or modified versions of Nintendo games must not be used
- Games with online play must use the online gameplay services and/or servers officially provided by Nintendo
The Organizer posts the following notices on-site and on tournament websites and other promotional materials:
The Organizer adheres to the following additional stipulations:
- Organisers are responsible for ensuring Community Tournaments comply with all applicable laws, including, but not limited to, protection of personal information for Participants and Spectators, and appropriate parental consent for minors.
- Organisers must ensure the health and safety of Participants and Spectators to the best of their ability
- Organisers will make full efforts to create a Community Tournament that is friendly and welcoming to all, and that fully respects the dignity of Participants and will not tolerate harassment or discrimination of any kind, including based on race, ethnicity, nationality, ideology, religion, belief, origin, social status, class, occupation, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or marital status
- Organisers will not permit gambling or the use of alcohol or drugs at Community Tournaments
- Organisers will make sure that Participants and Spectators are of age according to the applicable age rating of the game used in the tournament
- For the use of any intellectual property rights owned by a third party, Organisers must obtain permission from those rights owners separately from these guidelines
In addition, Nintendo games may not be used for Community Tournaments that:
- Are illegal or inappropriately conducted, or could be viewed as offensive or otherwise inappropriate as further described in Q16 below
- Fail to protect the health, safety and dignity of Participants and Spectators
- Have sponsors or that advertise or promote any entity, products or services
- Promote any campaigns or initiatives based on personal or organised opinions, ideologies, or beliefs
- Include anything that damages the value of the Nintendo brand and Intellectual Property
- Fail to follow these guidelines
- Involve anything that Nintendo deems inappropriate
Nintendo reserves the right to take legal action against or cancel any Community Tournaments in its sole discretion, including any tournaments that violate or are likely to violate these guidelines, or Community Tournaments that Nintendo otherwise deems inappropriate. In addition, we may take measures such as prohibiting individuals who violate these guidelines, or engage in other inappropriate acts, from hosting tournaments in the future.
Nintendo is not responsible for any problems that may arise between Organisers, Participants, Spectators or third parties regarding the operation of the Community Tournament. In addition, please be advised that Nintendo will not respond to individual inquiries regarding the guidelines or Q&A.
We may update these guidelines and Q&A from time to time, so please check the latest guidelines and Q&A before announcing and conducting a Community Tournament.
If there are special provisions in other Nintendo guidelines, please follow those guidelines as well.
The same post also contains an FAQ about the guidelines. You can read it in full here.
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