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As you may know, WatchMojo is one of the most popular channels on YouTube. Covering everything from TV and films to video games, their videos are usually your standard top ten lists about various subjects. Like the top ten worst selling consoles or the top ten most expensive sci-fi movies.
You know, the typical stuff you find on Buzzfeed like clickbait factories. Poorly researched, minimal effort attention grabbers that often retread the same ground as legions of others beforehand.
But in itself, that’s not a bad thing. After all, top ten lists aren’t a crime against humanity. And hey, everyone does need to just switch off and watch something a bit more mindless every now and again, right?
Well, I guess so. Except there’s just one problem.
Namely, the info in the videos is stolen from other YouTube creators.
Yep, I’m not kidding. All the facts are straight from other people’s work with no credit given.
How do we know this?
Because Guru Larry has seen his whole video ripped off and reused as a WatchMojo list. Yep, they took one of his Fact Hunt videos, noted down the entries there and remade the entire thing as a video on their channel.
Normally, that wouldn’t be too noticeable. Unfortunately for WatchMojo though, Guru Larry was prepared.
That’s because Guru Larry (like many map makers and dictionary writers of old) is known to sneak ‘copyright traps’ into his work. These traps are very minor ‘mistakes’ that can then be used to prove someone stole your data and reused it in their own work. They’re quite common on maps, with ‘trap streets’ often used to prove a mapmaker copied one of their rivals.
And since WatchMojo clearly didn’t do any other research on the topic, they copied the fake information without checking. Good job guys! How lovely of you to tell us where you get your information from now!
Here’s Larry’s tweet about the subject going into a bit more:
Great thing to wake up to, @WatchMojo has literally stolen all the research from my Worst Selling Consoles episode!
— Larry Bundy Jr (@LarryBundyJr) August 10, 2017
As well as Top Hat Gaming Man’s great video about the controversy:
So either way, the cat was out of the bag and Twitter was talking about it. So what did WatchMojo do?
Did they apologise for their actions like mature people would? Take down the video to stop people being fooled by fake information?
Well, not quite. They took down the video sure, but actually admitting they stole someone’s research never factored into it. Instead they sent Guru Larry the following, rather hilarious letter:
WatchMojo's email response to me about them stealing my research: pic.twitter.com/2gvnxhoyC4
— Larry Bundy Jr (@LarryBundyJr) August 10, 2017
As you can see, it’s filled with examples of questionable journalism ethics. For example, why don’t the organisation credit people for their findings?
Because they don’t know said people are the original finders. Yes really. They outright say they won’t credit anyone because they don’t know said people are the ones they should be crediting.
That’s just… wow. Can you imagine if someone did that in school or college?
Like, if they handed in an essay with no citations because they ‘didn’t know’ the researcher was the original discoverer? Or told the lecturer they didn’t credit anyone because they didn’t know whether their sources were the original ones?
They’d probably get thrown off the course. That’s an obvious example of plagiarism, no matter how you cut it.
Yet that’s not all the letter implies.Oh no, it also implies they’re rather terrible at research.
Well, isn’t the job of a journalist about verifying the information they’re posting about? Aren’t journalists supposed to hunt down the source of a piece of information before writing about it?
Yeah, I think they are. But thanks to the fact WatchMojo clearly isn’t finding the original source, it implies the channel’s ‘researchers’ don’t actually do much research at all. That they find whatever a few other YouTubers or writers have said about a topic, copy down the information and merely assume it’s accurate. Verifying stuff? Who has the time for that, right?
Additionally, they also seem to imply they don’t really check their videos for originality all that well either. That’s because their letter goes and says ‘their tool didn’t pick up the similarities to your video’, implying the only thing they do is put the information through an automated plagiarism checker and hope nothing comes up as a match.
That’s again pretty bad for a channel like this. It’s basically admitting that people can send in anything and they’ll post it so long as it doesn’t ‘look’ enough like the source it’s paraphrasing. It feels like one of those cases where someone assumes Copyscape or Turnitin is good enough on its own.
And when you add this to the clear mistakes the channel makes in their videos (Top Hat Gaming Man references the terrible ‘Jaguar sales data’ in his response), you’ve got a lazy, uninspired YouTube channel trying to cash in on other people’s work for their own gain. Which is a trend that’s all too common now. Giant clickbait channels spamming low effort videos based on other people’s work for quick views.
So don’t support these guys. They clearly don’t put a lot of work into their videos, they steal from other people and their journalistic integrity is virtually nil. Treat them like you would Brash Games or other thieves. Organisations you refuse to support for their complete lack of morals and sheer laziness.
Because WatchMojo doesn’t deserve your patronage. And nor do any other such channels who refuse to credit people for their work.
As any Nintendo fan likely knows, Michael Pachter has a… tendency to make some rather stupid arguments in his analysis. He claimed the Wii would fail in 2006, then said the same thing over and over till the console generation ended.
Add his constant comments on Nintendo going third party or his rude attitude towards Satoru Iwata back in 2016, and you’ve got that someone no one in the gaming world takes seriously.
Which his latest ‘argument’ won’t be changing one bit. Why? Because Pachter quite literally calls Japanese games irrelevant. He does this in an interview with Game Bolt stating that:
Japanese games don’t matter in the larger scheme of things, You are talking about 2 million units, I mean, a piece of crap like Mafia 3 sold 5 million units, and that game is a piece of crap. So, no, 2 million units is a rounding error, that doesn’t matter. No one is making money off of that.
It’s a very general view, and I guess I can see where he’s coming from.
But at the same time, his arguments also have a lot of flaws in them.
For one thing, they kind of assumes that every Japanese title is niche and every Western one isn’t. Because hey, Persona 2 (a niche title) only sold 2 million copies whereas Mafia 3 (a less niche one) sold 5 million.
But that’s not the case in any region of the world. In fact, a large percentage of games in the West also sell as much or less than Persona 2.
And that’s absolutely fine. If you’re making game for a niche audience (or as part of an unpopular genre in general), it will sell less than a mainstream ‘shoot everything’ title would. That bullet hell shooter, that super hard platformer, the visual novel or comedy RPG… they’re always going to sell less than the likes of Call of Duty or Halo, regardless of their quality.
Yet that’s not something that makes them irrelevant. I mean, imagine if you applied that logic to the real world. Could you really say every other restaurant is ‘irrelevant’ because McDonalds sells more on a daily basis? How about that all drinks sellers outside of America are irrelevant because Coca Cola has so much of the market?
You couldn’t, because many of these other products and businesses are not directly competing with McDonalds or Coca Cola.
So you’d compare say, the top soft drink brands, or the top beer brands, or the top tea brands with each other, not with the market as a whole.
On that level… Street Fighter V might be a success, since it’s popular in the fighting game community. The Resident Evil games may be successful, because they’re popular among survival horror fans. And while Persona 5 may not be up there with Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest, it’s still pretty popular and well liked among RPG fans.
That’s what really matters here. Not whether one or two niche titles from Japan compare to one or two less niche titles from Western developers.
And this is especially true given that said niche/mainstream titles are only a tiny part of their respective markets.
Seriously. Go and compare Mario, Pokémon, Zelda, Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Smash Bros or Splatoon to mainstream Western games. Those (and many more) sell at roughly the same level, because they’re also mainstream titles meant for a general audience.
If you want to compare your Western triple A games to anything, compare them to Japanese triple A titles like these:
Not the niche titles that aren’t aiming to sell 20 million copies in the first place.
But Pachter didn’t do that, because comparing mainstream titles to other mainstream titles would show that the Japanese gaming industry is not ‘dying’ or ‘dead’ compared to the Western one.
It’s like saying the ‘Western’ market is dead because you compared Shovel Knight to Pokémon.
But hang on, you argue. Doesn’t Pachter discount Nintendo as ‘different’ to Japanese games as a whole?
Yes he does. Problem is, with that logic you could argue a lot of questionable things. Remove what’s considered ‘outliers’, and you can twist the truth into anything.
I mean, imagine if you said ‘social networks aren’t that popular, with the exception of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat’. That’s pretty misleading isn’t it? You’ve cut out four of the most popular social media sites and made a claim that’s very clearly wrong by any normal way of thinking.
Or how about some others?
If you ignore the USA, UK, Australia and Canada, English isn’t a popular first language worldwide
Ignoring Disney, animated movies haven’t done that well in the last decade
Eh, no one uses search engines any more. Assuming Google doesn’t exist
Either way, it’s the same case here. You’re basically removing the number 1 player in the Japanese gaming market if you pretend Nintendo doesn’t exist. Or is somehow ‘different’ from the rule.
You may as well by saying this:
And that’s the case here. By comparing niche games to mainstream ones and deliberately leaving out any evidence that disagrees with his theory, Pachter is being dishonest and making the Japanese video games industry look worse than it actually is.
So no, it’s not ‘irrelevant’. The Japanese gaming industry is doing just fine.
You just need to stop comparing apples and oranges here.
Last year, we posted about some underrated YouTube channels. These channels (including Boundary Break and Slopes Game Room) were struggling to get viewers at the time, and so we decided to post a few articles to give ‘em a bit more attention.
And oh boy, did our plan succeed. Indeed, since the last two underrated gaming channels articles were posted, almost every single one on both lists has skyrocketed in popularity! Shesez has watched Boundary Break get to over 180,000 subscribers! Dan has seen Slopes Game Room soar past 41,000. Heck, even the less popular ones like BlueJackG and Source Gaming have seen their YouTube subscriber count explode since being featured!
So with even more great gaming channels struggling to get attention, we’ve decided to make another list.
Here it is. Here are ten more underrated gaming channels that desperately need more views and subscribers!
Starting with an interesting Pokémon channel you may not already know about…
Subscribers: 48,125 (main channel), 3,261 (extra channel)
Well, two YouTube channels anyway. Because while most people on my list tend to stick to a main channel for all their videos, Pikasprey runs two separate channels based on video game obscurities and fan works respectively.
And oh boy are they both worth subscribing to. Why?
Because their content is incredible unique. For example, have you ever wondered whether you could make Pokémon Red and Blue completely unwinnable? Like, to the point the save file is virtually bricked?
Me neither, but Pikasprey provides a really interesting video on the topic none the less, involving a save file where the player has no money, no trainers to fight, no access to any Pokémon with Payday and absolutely no way of entering the Safari Zone to get HM03 and HM04.
Or how about an actual unwinnable battle? Because he’s set up one of those too. Complete with a situation where an underleveled Primate will be stuck using Rage against a continuously healing Dewgong until the end of time (or until he somehow misses the same attack 20 times in a row).
It’s a really fascinating set of videos, and kind of provides a sort of Stryder 7x or Pannenkoek2012 type experience for Pokémon fans.
Which is also something you can probably say about our next choice too…
Because Nermfulness is extremely dedicated to The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild.
Well, let me illustrate this in one line:
He brought a Lynel all the way into Gerudo Town from the top of a mountain a good few miles away.
I’m not joking:
And it’s not the only example of his… interesting experiments. Oh no, he’s also brought Lynels to stables, the Shrine of Resurrection, Fairy Fountains and Calamity Ganon to mention but a few. It’s like he thought “What’s the the most insane thing I could do?” and realised that transporting Lynels around Hyrule was exactly that.
It’s actually rather intriguing, seeing all the weird places you can bring these terrifying creatures without the game glitching out on you.
But what if you’re a bit bored of Lynels?
Well, that’s no problem either! You can instead watch him steal a sheep from a farm in Hateno Village and lure it off to his house one piece of fruit at a time:
Definitely an interesting channel to watch, especially if you’re fascinated by Breath of the Wild and all the detailed game mechanics it has.
But enough about glitches and video game mechanics for now. Are there any underrated video game music remixers on YouTube?
Certainly, with Loeder being a great example of one. As you may know (thanks to our recent interview), Loeder’s speciality are eight bit covers of modern Nintendo music. Or in other words… he redoes songs from games like Zelda Breath of the Wild, Paper Mario Color Splash and Super Mario Odyssey in the style of a title from the NES era.
And well, he does a damn good job of it too. Just listen to his awesome version of Hyrule Castle from Breath of the Wild:
His redone version of Sand Kingdom from Super Mario Odyssey:
Or his NES style rendition of A Fearsome Foe from Paper Mario Color Splash:
If you need some good examples. So check his videos out, they definitely deserve more views than they’re currently getting.
Which is also something you can say of our next channel as well. Why?
Because it’s possibly one of the most underrated, unknown video game analysis channels on the entire site.
Seriously, watch his video on Wario World’s questionable game over design or game design trends in the 3D Mario titles and tell me he really deserves only 667 subscribers. I mean, these are poorly researched rants or lists. They’re fairly detailed analysis videos about games and series that people often ignored.
Yet for whatever reason, the YouTube machine decided that Mr Rants with a Facecam in the Corner somehow deserves a thousand times more subscribers and views for screaming incoherently while playing Five Nights at Freddy’s. It’s kind of heart breaking really.
Either way, while I don’t agree with all the ideas presented in the videos, they’re definitely something more people should take into consideration, and make the channel well worth checking out.
Which is also something you could say about this channel, for much the same reasons. Because TheZZAZZGlitch is quite literally the Pannenkoek of the Pokémon series. Perhaps even more so that Pikasprey before him.
No joke. He even has his own video talking about parallel universes in Pokémon Red and Blue!
As well as a video talking about completing Pokémon while pressing the A button as few times as possible:
It’s like Mario 64 and Pokémon Red and Blue were designed with eerily similar design philosophies. Or at least analysed by people with similar attitudes towards challenges and speedruns.
But don’t think his channel is purely Pannekoek’s as applied to Pokémon. Oh no, this guy is also a master of arbitrary code execution bugs. Like this one that uses an item in Pokémon to affect a completely different game on the system:
As well as many more interesting videos as well. So if you’re a fan of Pannekoek or Stryder7x and want a slightly less well known alternative… The ZZAZZGlitch is your man. Check out his channel right away!
Recently, Niantic Labs held a Pokémon GO event called Pokémon GO Fest in Chicago. This event was supposed to bring players together, as well as allow them to take part in special raid battles for legendary Pokémon in the title. It was meant to be a celebration of the community. Of Pokémon GO’s successes and influence.
Unfortunately, it seems things haven’t gone according to plan. Indeed, according to various people who went there, Pokémon GO Fest has become a complete disaster.
Because the exact same bugs that caused players to lose interest in the game in general have affected the event. Except even worse than usual.
For instance, the sheer number of players in the park actually brought down many of the mobile networks. This is a problem given the game needs a mobile connection to run, and so the result meant a whole park full of players who couldn’t actually play Pokémon GO.
That’s pretty bad for an event dedicated specifically to playing Pokémon GO. It’s like if every games console crashed at E3 and couldn’t be fixed until the event ended. Or if your average tech conference had the Wi-Fi go down for the entire duration.
But it could have mitigated with some alternatives. After all, events aren’t usually just one thing. There are often shows and other goings on to keep people occupied.
However, Niantic didn’t do this. They didn’t plan for the system going down at all.
So not only was the game unplayable, but there was a complete lack of alternative things to do there as well. This in turn left a huge park worth of players standing around unable to do nothing while Niantic’s technicians desperately tried to salvage the situation.
Obviously, the players weren’t happy about this. And they took it out on Niantic CEO John Hanke as he walked on stage to introduce the event:
Yep, he got booed to all hell and back. In fact, later in the event people went further and started chanting “fix your game” at the poor guy in response to the disaster unfolding in front of that.
Add the insane lines (made worse by only one park entrance being opened), violence breaking out (yes really) and embarrassment as spoofers got better Pokémon by pretending to be at the event, and you had a trainwreck of epic proportions. Indeed, some may compare it to Dashcon in its sheer failure.
Still, at least Niantic did try and make it up for fans. They gave everyone who attended the event a free Lugia for the game, released legendaries for people to catch worldwide and offered refunds to other attendees. So it’s not like fans were ignored.
— Julie (@toloveLfromVine) 23 July 2017
But it’s still a terrible showing none the less. I mean, you had a whole year to plan this out. It was advertised to hell and back as ‘the’ Pokémon GO event. There was zero excuse for all this poor organisation here.
Yet somehow Niantic screwed it all up. Kind of reminiscent of the game’s own situation isn’t it?
A brilliant idea wrecked by technical difficulties and incompetent management. But hey, what do you think?
Did you go to Pokémon GO Fest? If so, post your thoughts here or on social media today!