Nintendo blacklists media outlet after Pokemon leaks
The lead up to the next generation of Pokemon last year was wrapped in mystery and each morsel released by Nintendo was a treasure. As the release date for Pokemon Sword/Shield inched closer it became more and more clear that what Nintendo had allowed us to see was only scratching the surface. That is until around November, about 2 weeks before the official launch, leaks started spreading like wildfire in screenshots released completely against Nintendo and the Pokemon Company’s will.
Since then, Nintendo has been on a proverbial manhunt to track down the leaker and dole out justice. Today, in a joint statement by Nintendo and the Pokemon Company, it seems they have caught the one responsible. An unnamed member of the games media representing the Portuguese website FNintendo has been identified as the leaker in question.
Per Nintendo’s official statement, “These Pokemon were leaked by a reviewer…who had received an early copy of the game for review purposes. Both he and FNintendo failed to handle confidential material, resulting in a clear breach of the confidentiality agreement”.
Uploading the numerous confidential screenshots of the unreleased game to the website before the date on the signed agreement has officially doomed their nearly 11-year-old partnership with the game company. Even though FNintendo has since parted ways with the writer in question, the repercussions of those actions will continue to haunt the website.
How a website based solely around the Nintendo brand can continue while being blacklisted by Nintendo themselves will continue to run is beyond me. It serves as a reminder to all of us here in games media how seriously these nondisclosure agreements should be taken. It is always a thrilling prospect to be the first to break the story, but the contracts are put in place for good reason. A breach of that trust can not just spoil your own career, but the livelihoods of those working with you.