In an updated release of rules found here. Microsoft addresses the many users out there that make money by creating videos or live streaming their game content:
You may post your Item to a page or website that has advertising, but only if you do not earn any money from that advertising. For example, if you post your video on Youtube or Vimeo and there happens to be an advertisement next to it, then as long as you don’t get paid for that advertisement, the fact that there is an advertisement on the page doesn’t break these Rules. But enrolling in the Youtube partner program (or other similar programs), where you are entering into an agreement to get paid, is not allowed. On a similar note, if you create and distribute a free app, then you can’t earn any money from advertising in that app.
Previous language (UPDATE):
Except as described here, you can’t sell or otherwise earn any compensation from your Item, including through advertisements in the Item. We will let you have advertising or optional donation requests on the page hosting the Item, but that’s it. That means you can’t sell your Item, post it on a site that requires subscription or other fees, or post it on a page you use to sell other items or services (even if they have nothing to do with Game Content or Microsoft). You may use the Item to enter a contest or sweepstakes as long as the contest organizers agree to follow these rules. Where someone is trying to promote their commercial venture (even just a commercial website) with your Item, they need our permission to do this. If they’ve got our permission you’ll know. Source web.archive.org
Now what that is saying in shorthand, If you earn money from being a partner with YouTube, Blip.tv, and pretty much any other service that offers a revenue share on ads, you cannot use content from the following:
- Halo (all versions)
- Forza Motorsport (all versions)*
- Fable (all versions)
- Kinect Adventures
- Kinect Joy Ride
- Age of Empires (all versions)
- Flight Simulator (all versions)*
- Perfect Dark Zero
- Project Gotham Racing (all versions)*
- Viva Piñata
So for all of you guys out there getting ready for the launch of Halo 4, looks like your dreams of making it rich off of YouTube or Twitch are going to fall short.
As posted by Stinkles on NeoGAF
As I mentioned in the Halo community thread, these rules actually haven’t really changed, and even the updated and clarified text has been up there for months. I assume somebody just noticed this and posted this morning because it sort of blew up. This has always been the Legal status for the IP (and MOST IPs in fact), and as you also already know, nobody is being sued, or in jail, etc etc etc.
The language isn’t designed to stop kids streaming their games, or covering their costs, it’s designed to stop big companies from using somebody else’s IP to run a business.
We’ll put together some language that will help community people navigate this easily, and give people workarounds.
I am curious as to who the Big Companies are… seeing as how it clearly states if you are a YouTube Partner you are not allowed to monetize the content
Update 10:55 pm cst
As you may see with a little research on previous versions of these terms, at no time was there such a direct mention of YouTube and other services as such. In previous versions it was even ok to have ads on the site hosting the video. So this is clearly a major change in their stance in compared to previous terms.