Following accusations that Microsoft paid YouTube commenters to give the Xbox One favorable coverage, a similar accusation has been hurled at Electronic Arts. In itself, a company paying someone to talk about their products isn’t an issue, but both Microsoft and EA have been accused of having the people paid sign non-disclosure agreements barring them from revealing their arrangements with the companies in question, which may be a violation of FTC guidelines.
Like Microsoft, publisher Electronic Arts is also compensating YouTube video producers who post footage of its games, including titles Battlefield 4 and Need for Speed Rivals, according to documents posted on NeoGAF. Under EA’s program, named Ronku, video producers could earn money for showing footage of the next-gen versions of Battlefield 4 and Need For Speed Rivals. Certain Ronku “assignments” encouraged highlight specific moments in EA’s games, such as demonstrating “how you will cross the line” in Need for Speed Rivals, or taking down an entire skyscraper in Battlefield 4 multiplayer. Participants for both games could earn $10 per thousand video views for a maximum of three videos.