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Rockstar outlines video upload policies ahead of GTA 5 launch

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Grand Theft Auto 5 will likely inspire players to record clips of amazing events and put them online, and with the game's release just one day away, publisher Rockstar Games has updated its policies regarding video uploads.

It sounds like Rockstar tends to be relatively lenient when it comes to policing clips from its games. "Generally Take-Two Interactive [the parent company of Rockstar Games] does not object to fans using materials for non-commercial uses in a manner which does not intentionally spoil the plot for others," says Rockstar on its support website. "Non-commercial uses" means that people who post footage from Rockstar Games titles can't use the videos to sell memberships to their websites or otherwise promote products they sell.

Rockstar also lists a few additional guidelines. For one, any gameplay or unboxing videos from the public that go up ahead of a game's release will be taken down, "regardless of how the game was obtained." Rockstar also doesn't want people to post spoilers or videos that are "pure cutscenes," although narrated clips that happen to include cutscenes — "Let's Play" videos — are fine. And entertainment from within a game world, like Katt Williams' stand-up from Grand Theft Auto 4, is verboten.

"We're happy for fans to upload footage of their gameplay — we love seeing machinima from our games," says Rockstar. The company also notes that it "does reserve the right to have its copyrighted material taken down," and to change its policies, at any time.

You can read our review of Grand Theft Auto 5, which will be released tomorrow on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, here.

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