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Nintendo Releases Animal Crossing Usage Guidelines; Forbids Politics

Evangelion Unit-01

Master Chief
May 18, 2020
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Nintendo has just released its "Animal Crossing: New Horizons Usage Guidelines for Businesses and Organizations" detailing how groups might use the game and its content for promotional purposes. Since launch a ton of brands have used Animal Crossing to promote their products. You can read about some of the promotions here.

I've included an excerpt below but the full Guidelines here.

Businesses and organizations may use the Game in the following ways.
  • Providing your Custom Design and/or Dream Address to other players.
  • Inviting other players to your island.
  • Uploading screenshots and/or game footage to family-friendly websites and social network services.
However, please observe the following points when you engage in these activities.
  • Please be aware of the game rating and do not engage in activities that go beyond the rating.
  • Please refrain from using the Game inappropriately or creating any content within the Game that would be considered vulgar, discriminatory, or offensive. Please also refrain from bringing politics into the Game.
  • Please do not share false information about the Game with anyone, and do not deceive others while using the Game (e.g. falsely indicating you are separately licensed or otherwise approved by Nintendo).
  • Please do not leverage the Game as a marketing platform that directs people to activities or campaigns outside the game (including directing people to a sales page, distributing coupons, sweepstakes, giveaways, requiring consumers to follow social network services accounts, gathering customers’ information, or other invitational activities).
  • You are not allowed to obtain any financial benefit from using the Game (including selling your Custom Design or earning any advertising revenue with the Game content).
Fairly comprehensive. I am incredibly curious to see how they enforce them. The part that was most interesting me was language around politics. Nintendo explicitly states, "Please also refrain from bringing politics into the Game."


This is incredibly interesting given how several politicians have leveraged the Game for marketing purposes:
Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, economics expert and all around genius, used it to connect w/ voters. Reported on here by the hard hitting journalists at Kotaku.
The Biden Campaign created designs and an Island for Joe which were unveiled by none other than Greg Miller and Tim "If you voted for Trump you're not welcome to be a Kinda Funny fan" Gettys at Kinda Funny Games.
 

Abriael_GN

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The timing appears to be a bit off. 😂

Good none the less. Politics should be left out from a family-friendly environment like this. Those who used the game for political gain (and those who supported them in that effort) deserve all the criticism they get, which unfortunately isn't enough.

Incidentally, politics were already banned in Japan. A politician thought to use it this way a few months ago, but backtracked real quick as soon as he noticed it was against the TOS.
 
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Abriael_GN

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Imagine the mentality of an adult who is so ignorant to the effect of political propaganda that he thinks it's harmless to include it in game that is appropriate for, and often enjoyed by children.

And imagine the mentality of the teletubbiers that supported them in that propaganda effort like it was some heroic contribution to the community...
 
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Golgo 13

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I had to mute simps like Greg Miller and the whole douchey "Kinda Funny" crew (none of which remotely approach being funny). It was all just uninformed, extremist platitudes being repeated ad-nauseum. They're all just empty shells of human beings with no original ideas or thoughts.
 

#Phonepunk#

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lol holy shit more "rules for thee". where was this banning of political speech and using the game for money when the Democrats were using this game to raise money only last month? it's ok for millionaires to do it, but for you or me, that will get us banned.

it's still baffling that people see Democrats as the "party of the people" when they seem to publicly flaunt their ability to get away with the same behavior they forbid from regular users.
 
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Abriael_GN

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And Kotaku's article is the perfect example of why this is a good thing.

The usual trite "everything is politics!" or crap like "who are Nintendo to judge?!" (I don't know. Who are they, Plunkett-clown? Maybe they're simply the owners of the whole place?) crowned by the inevitable and childish "the politicians ON MY SIDE didn't do anything wrong!" cry.

These people become every day more transparent. They're completely unable to simply report the news without mixing it with their personal opinions.
 
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BaneIsPain

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And Kotaku's article is the perfect example of why this is a good thing.

The usual trite "everything is politics!" or crap like "who are Nintendo to judge?!" (I don't know. Who are they, Plunkett-clown? Maybe they're simply the owners of the whole place?) crowned by the inevitable and childish "the politicians ON MY SIDE didn't do anything wrong!" cry.

These people become every day more transparent.

Narcissistic behaviour as Paragon of Virtue never ceased to amaze me. That's Kotaku
 

ManaByte

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JordanN

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This is why I love Nintendo. I hope it pains ResetEra idiots that Nintendo is a super conservative and traditional Japanese company that doesn’t give a fuck about their delusional sensibilities. Nintendo knows they won’t stop buying their games anyway. Win/win.
They're probably going to start harassing the NOA branch instead.

Hell, knowing the desperate fuckers, they might even riot and begin personally attacking Nintendo property, like they did a few months ago.

 
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EDMIX

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Can't imagine the mentality of an adult swayed in a political decision based on light-hearted kiddie game.

I mean, muthfuckas was out here deciding who they'd vote for based on if they imagined they could drink a beer with said person. lol

People decide who they'll vote for for far stranger reasons.
 

Evangelion Unit-01

Master Chief
May 18, 2020
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Would Animal Talking with Gary Whitta be in violation of the policy?
I was thinking about that as well. I imagine it might be since people are coming onto that show and then talking promoting their products, encouraging people to look at their social media and web presence.

lol holy shit more "rules for thee". where was this banning of political speech and using the game for money when the Democrats were using this game to raise money only last month? it's ok for millionaires to do it, but for you or me, that will get us banned.

it's still baffling that people see Democrats as the "party of the people" when they seem to publicly flaunt their ability to get away with the same behavior they forbid from regular users.
I don't see it that way. Nintendo isn't interested in allowing Republicans or Democrats to use AC for campaigning. I think the timing is interesting though since they waited until after the election to update these guidelines. I wonder if they waited so that they would not draw the ire of Biden supporters who would interpret their guidelines as anti-Biden rather than protecting their product. Nintendo has remained relatively unscathed by the mob but has still taken a little hate for removing custom built pride stages from Smash, not having gay relationships in Fire Emblem, not having enough people X race/gender in Smash, and their depiction of women in Xenoblade Chronicles 2 among a handful of other small nontroversies. That said, with how careful they have been to avoid the cancel culture obsessed mob I'm left wondering if they waited until after the election to avoid having to deal with backlash.


And Kotaku's article is the perfect example of why this is a good thing.

The usual trite "everything is politics!" or crap like "who are Nintendo to judge?!" (I don't know. Who are they, Plunkett-clown? Maybe they're simply the owners of the whole place?) crowned by the inevitable and childish "the politicians ON MY SIDE didn't do anything wrong!" cry.

These people become every day more transparent. They're completely unable to simply report the news without mixing it with their personal opinions.
Nice find. Yeah spot on. It would be a problem if Trump used Animal Crossing and they would be begging Nintendo to stop him but since Biden used it they can blame Nintendo and paint them as evil and controlling. Nintendo just wants to protect their product.


I also get really frustrated with the "everything is political" nonsense. Everything is a product of our culture, systems, and institutions. There is a huge difference between political elements and political commentary. The mayor position and the existence of a store where one can exchange money for goods are political elements in Animal Crossing, and a product of Japan's own institutions. They are however very different from Ronald Reagan being depicted as a Nazi fanboy in Wolfenstein which is commentary supporting the far left's view that modern conservatives are Nazis. A game like Tom Clancy or Call of Duty might have political themes of war and the depiction of real countries but I would hardly consider them political; they don't serve as a commentary on the conflict in Syria, or on tax policy, or the environment. The people making this "everything is political" message seemingly do not understand the difference between political elements and political commentary or messaging. Actually, they problem understand the distinction and are just being purposefully disingenuous as they are with so many other things.
 

Newly Vacant

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People, who say they don't want politics in video games, actively engage in political discourse in a video game thread about banning politics from a video game. The agendas are fairly transparent. This is NeoGAF.
Demanding politics be removed is, in fact, political? Lauding the apolitical, is actually political? There is no such thing as neutrality. Interesting.
 

Evangelion Unit-01

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People, who say they don't want politics in video games, actively engage in political discourse in a video game thread about banning politics from a video game. The agendas are fairly transparent. This is NeoGAF.
I've talked about this before including the post directly above yours. There is a difference between political elements used to create a story or mechanic and political messaging. The former is innocuous and necessary; a reflection of our cultures and conventions. The latter is frustrating especially when inserted into media that was apolitical before. What frustrates people is when games decide to provide value judgement on current political topics or even worse when media attempts to tell someone who to vote for or guilt them for voting for another candidate.

I would encourage you to read my above post or this one below from a thread on COD:
Pretty much every game has political themes: Division, Ghost Recon, COD, Rainbow Six, Battlefield, Metal Gear, Zelda, Fire Emblem, Halo, Bioshock, Half Life, GTA etc. These serve as the the back drop in the story and setup the plot. Nobody truly has a problem with that.

Political messaging on the other hand is a direct response to and value judgement on a current political topic. When a game practically breaks the fourth wall to either parrot or refute a current political talking point, that is where people take issue.

Nobody is that naive enough not to see the difference between Biden campaigning in Animal Crossing and a fictional COD game having the political elements of war as the backdrop to a story.

Then again, I suppose that you already knew all of that though and just wanted to be disingenuous in order to perpetuate your "look at these hypocrites" argument. Have you ever consider that perhaps it is you that has a transparent agenda?
 
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dave_d

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Why people bring politics in a kids game to begin with?
Because a non insignificant percentage of politicians are psychopaths, lacking anything close to something like a conscience and are willing to do anything if they thought that they could get away with it and that it would help them. Then again I might be the slightest bit jaded.
 
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