Monday, July 6, 2015

Monetizing EVE Twitch Streams: Outstanding Issues

"It is great news to get a defined policy to follow and very much welcomed by vloggers and streamers."

Occasionally I wish I hadn't started writing about real money trading. Personally, I don't consider the subscriber-only giveaways CCP banned as of 1 July as real money trading. A violation of Section 6B of the EULA? Sure. But CCP states directly in the Monetization of Videos and Streaming Policy:
"Videos and streams may also not be used to generate real world revenue by offering in-game ISK and/or assets as incentives to subscribe to a paid service such as a Twitch channel subscription or other subscription service.

"If in-game assets are used in giveaways to promote popularity of a stream or video, there must be full parity between users who are viewing the content for free and those who are subscribed, and all viewers of content must have the same access to giveaways and the same chance to win prizes regardless of any subscription fees paid.

"Use of in-game assets for subscription-only based prize draws and incentives constitute real money trading (RMT). This is against our policies."
So I get to address the issue.

I think the two streamers most people pointed to who violated the new policy were TheMittani.com and 1ronBank. First, let's look at the easiest case to understand, TMC.

TMC had two practices that violated the new policy. First, they performed subscriber-only giveaways using in-game items. Secondly, they also weighted the odds towards subscribers in giveaways in which both subscribers and non-subscribers participated. Two practices that The Mittani stated TMC would cease on 27 June on The Meta Show. CCP Falcon appeared on the broadcast and explained the policy near the beginning of the show.

The second Twitch stream in question is 1ronBank. I watched the 3 July stream and, despite the quote at the beginning of this post, he claimed he didn't understand what he could and could not do. He also stated he attempted to contact CCP several times with questions and never received a response. Not a good start.

1ronBank did make changes in order to comply with the revised policy. Both subscribers and non-subscribers can only win in-game items once per stream. For his infinite raffles in which people may purchase as many tickets as they want with iron, 1ronBank's virtual currency, he will only offer out-of-game prizes. Yes, PLEX codes purchased from a reseller are out-of-game prizes.

Despite the changes, I do not believe 1ronBank is in full compliance with CCP's policy. In order to enter a raffle, people must still purchase tickets with iron. Subscribers earn iron at 4 times the rate as non-subscribers. As long as the iron is given out at uneven rates, I believe that 1ronBank is in non-compliance and faces CCP reporting him to Twitch for violating CCP's proprietary rights to EVE Online.

Quite frankly, my big concern isn't whether CCP decides to ban 1ronBank. My concern is that 1ronBank's actions could get one or more of his viewers permanently banned from EVE. In addition to a affiliate link to authorized PLEX reseller Markee Dragon, 1ronBank is also a partner of G2A, an unauthorized reseller of PLEX. G2A doesn't have the best reputation and earlier this year found itself involved in the scandal in which EA's Origin website sold thousands of Ubisoft game keys to people using stolen credit cards. Polygon reported that sellers on G2A sold around 2000 of the fraudulently acquired game keys.

One of the better known facts about game publishers is that they hate credit card fraud with a passion. CCP is no exception. If a player redeems a PLEX purchased from an unauthorized PLEX reseller, and that reseller obtained the PLEX code through credit card fraud, the player can expect CCP to ban the player and all the player's accounts. Permanently. Purchasing game time codes from an authorized PLEX reseller is means players don't need to worry about getting banned.

Did I mention that 1ronBank intends to give PLEX codes as the prizes for his infinite raffles? Hopefully he buys the codes from someone like Markee Dragon instead of G2A. I'd hate to see players banned from EVE because they trusted the wrong person.

Hopefully, this is the last post I write concerning violations of CCP's policies by Twitch streamers. I have my doubts, but maybe people will act responsibly for a change. I know some people will, but for some reason people will try to push the boundaries and wind up getting burned.

10 comments:

  1. There is literally zero reason to run a twitch stream for EVE if you have any kind of viewerbase at this point. There wasn't much of one in the first place but as a niche you could pull together enough viewers to do ok. CCP deciding to be the least played yet most regulated title in the entirety of the industry in this regard isn't going to help their business. It was a kneejerk reaction to a couple of people who were being abusive which serves only to put CCP in the position of attempting to change the established norms of streaming. Not going to happen. People will just stream games people want to watch instead.

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  2. "established norms of streaming"
    does game of thrones do give aways to get viewers?
    if your stream isn't entertaining in of itself perhaps you shouldn't be a content creator.

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  3. What the hell are you talking about? Nobody's talking about TV. Nobody's talking about artificially inflating viewer numbers. As a matter of fact it's the opposite. Subs are the only numbers that really matter in that regard. Someone's at least gone to the length to support your channel and isn't just some random sitting in there until the giveaway. This is the polar opposite of what you're inferring.


    CCP does the exact same thing when they make you have an account before posting on their forums or to be eligible for a contest as do many companies.


    This is also common practice among millionaire streamers so I'm pretty sure your comment about content creation is a off-target as the rest of what you said.

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  4. I know that Nintendo is a lot more restrictive, at least on YouTube, the CCP. I don't know about Twitch

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  5. 1. GTC/Plex codes are from a valid re-seller (markeedragon.com)
    2. Read the details in the stream under raffles. Clearly outlines how much "iron" etc. All Raffles for in game content is for 1 Entry.
    3. All eve streamers that I know who use community points based system use only 1 ticket entry now. Go research a little bit and you will find them.
    4. I have not had G2A displayed on my Stream (Video) since the 1st of July during any Eve streams, but of course you did not write that.
    5. I fully believe I am working within the confines of the new Policy.

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  6. "In order to enter a raffle, people must still purchase tickets with iron. Subscribers earn iron at 4 times the rate as non-subscribers"
    This is the only issue I took from Noizy's post and the reason you qualify as RMT as far as I can see. There is a link between handing over money to you and getting eve assets in return.

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  7. Yeah we are certainly down to splitting hairs \o/


    Each show I do, even as a new follower, you can get enough Iron for the full length of the show as the show goes for several hours. The show length was designed this was to allow for non sub'd players to participate.



    All those complaining about this mechanism of community points have never really taken the time to come and check this...


    However I must admit I am enjoying all the new attention this has brought as many were unaware of the channel :)



    ♥♥♥

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  8. http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2015/02/06/nintendo-updates-their-bad-youtube-policies-by-making-them-worse/ - sounds like it's working out pretty well for them. Clearly an example to be followed,.

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  9. You don't get given in game assets when you give Ironbank money I think you need to get your facts sorted out before talking about thing as you clearly have no idea what you are talking about. Non subs and subs both have the same chance of winning in the raffles, and seen as you can only buy one ticket there is no advantage to a sub over a non sub.

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  10. @NoizyGamer You seem to believe a lot of things in your post but yet you seem to know nothing. Maybe a bit more research is needed before you write another poor article. You could man up have the balls to ask him directly in his twitch channel instead making articles when you don't know exactly what your talking about.

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