Minecraft Usage Guidelines
We love that our players and fans do cool things and share them with the community. Our goal is to create an environment where you get to do great things for the Minecraft community without others coming along and spoiling it for everyone. We realize that some things you will create and share and other things you may create and sell. So, we wrote these guidelines to explain what we consider to be acceptable ways to use the Minecraft name, brand, assets in your creation.
To be clear, when we refer to:
- Our name (or the Minecraft name), we mean the name of any one of our games, taglines, features, events, or company identity. We also mean any names which are confusingly similar to our name
- Our brand, we mean any names, related logos, fonts, textures, and any other distinctive characteristics of any part of our name and games
- Our assets, we mean the code, software, graphics, textures, images, models, sounds and other audio from any of our games and any videos or screenshots taken from our games
In short, we hope that these help you understand what you can and can’t do and help you do and share more (and limit those that try to go too far).
We want to make it clear that these guidelines are for the community of Minecraft players and fans. The allowances we give in these guidelines do not authorize commercial companies, corporate brands, advertising agencies, non-profits, politicians, political action committees, governments to use or exploit Minecraft for promoting products, services, or agendas unrelated to Minecraft.
Important legal agreements
The guidelines presented here are to be followed along with the policies. They do not form part of the policies. Rather, they exist because we currently think it is a good idea to allow some leniency with respect to how you use Minecraft.
Subject to change
These guidelines may change as time goes by. We reserve the right to change our mind at any time (such as if people start to take advantage of our good intentions) and to update these guidelines. So don't count on these guidelines always being here or in the specific form they are in right now. It’s up to you to occasionally check back here to see if these guidelines have changed and ensure your use of Minecraft is in line with what we allow. Any changes made to these guidelines will be effective the next time you use our games, websites, or other services.
In relation to all uses (permitted or otherwise):
- All rights (including copyright, trademark rights, and related rights) in the name, brand, assets, and any derivatives are and will remain owned by Mojang and Microsoft
- All permissions and consents are given by us at our discretion and may be revoked at any time if we think that it is appropriate to do so, or we don’t like what you are doing
- All rights are expressly reserved
If you are interested in proposing a formal partnership with us, you can submit a partnership proposal. If you are seeking to report violations of these guidelines, you can send us information about the violation through our help form. We are not able to give advice about whether a specific project does or does not comply with these guidelines. If you are unsure, you should speak to an attorney for help.
More guidelines will follow as we decide what and when to add them – so feel free to make requests.
The first thing we want to say is that these are the essential guidelines that apply to all uses of our name, brand, and assets. While you should still read all the policies and guidelines in full, here is a quick summary of the essential points to help guide you.
If you are using any part of any name, any part of our brand, or any of our assets, then:
- Do not do anything or include anything that makes people think that what you are sharing could be interpreted as official or approved by, endorsed by, associated with, supported by, or connected to us
- Do not be unlawful, deceptive, obscene, harmful, or abusive
- Do not do anything that would harm or damage our name, brand, or assets (for example: gambling, pornography, violence, terrorism, or other unsafe/mature content)
- Do not redistribute our games or any alterations of our games or game files
- Do not make commercial use or commercially exploit anything that we have made unless these guidelines say it’s okay
- Do not give access to anything we’ve made in a way that is unfair or unreasonable
- Do not pretend to be / associated with / supported by Mojang or Microsoft and make it clear:
o You (not us) are responsible for the product or service (this includes events, servers, books, and hand-crafted items)
o Who the publisher, manufacturer, seller, organizer and/or owner are
o Whom to contact about the product, service, or any related purchases and the contact method (chat and forum links are not acceptable methods)
- Prominently include the disclaimer similar to the following: “NOT AN OFFICIAL MINECRAFT [PRODUCT/SERVICE/EVENT/etc.]. NOT APPROVED BY OR ASSOCIATED WITH MOJANG OR MICROSOFT” on your product, listing, description, website/webpage, and all other related materials.
These guidelines are intended to help you understand what we expect and don’t want when it comes to using our name, brand, and assets as part of your creations. We are trying to be open, honest, and, most importantly, trusting. Our hope is that you hold us in the same regard.
You may use our name in connection with your product or service, title, or listing (including on websites, video platforms, or merchandise) if you follow the guidelines in this section.
You may use the Minecraft name in a secondary name, secondary title, or description if you:
- Do so because it is necessary to describe your creations or their purpose honestly and fairly
- Ensure that the secondary title (which includes a Minecraft name) is not the dominant element or the distinctive part of the complete name or title
- Don't use any other aspect of any of our brand or assets as part of any related branding, including as a logo or part of a logo
- Don’t use our name as keywords or search tags for products that have no relationship with them or that are infringing or counterfeit
You may not use the Minecraft name as the primary or dominant name or title. To help you, we've suggested the following examples:
- “Kotoba Miners: A Minecraft server for Redstone builds” (we're cool with this)
- “Minecraft - the ultimate Kotoba server for Redstone” (we're not cool with this)
- “The Shaft – a Minecrafter’s podcast” (we’re cool with this)
- “Minecraft – the ultimate help app” (we’re not cool with this)
We are very relaxed about things you create for yourself. Pretty much anything goes there - so go for it and have fun, just remember the policies and don’t do anything illegal or infringing on others.
If you decide you want to share your creation with the community, you may do so. In fact, we are excited for you and can’t wait to see what you’ve been doing. When you decide to share your content with the community (whether you plan to make money off it or not), you are doing what we consider to be a commercial thing. When you do commercial things, you must follow the Commercial Use guidelines.
This applies, for example, if you want to set up and run any non-commercial blogs, servers, community forums, fan sites, fan clubs, news groups, events, and gatherings.
We are less relaxed about using our name, brand, assets for commercial use. While we do love that you want to share your creations with the community and we understand that you may want to charge others, we do have some limits regarding what we think is an acceptable commercial use of Minecraft.
In these guidelines, commercial use means any uses of our name, brand, or assets that you use and share with others (regardless of whether you receive payment or provide it for free). This can be through videos and streams you create, merchandise you make, or even a server you host. We may change this definition as time goes by but for now, we hope that this helps you understand what you can and can’t do, helping you, and other fans like you, do more (and limit those that try to go too far).
You may do things that are specifically covered by the fair dealing or fair use exceptions to copyright and trademark laws.
You may not do things that aren’t specifically permitted by the policies you agreed to or these guidelines unless we agree to allow it, or it is expressly allowed by applicable laws.
Domain names and websites
You can set up and run your own website and run related forums centered around information regarding the Minecraft game.
You may register and use a domain name that includes one of our names or brands so long as:
- The domain name you register doesn’t appear official and you don’t use the domain name in a way that appears official
- Your website only relates to the Minecraft game, the brand, or assets in a fair, reasonable, and appropriate way and not to other third-party games
- Any third-party advertising does not harm our brand
- You don’t do so for cybersquatting or principally to make money, including through affiliate services
When it comes to using Minecraft as a platform to promote yourself, your product, or your services, we are a little more strict. We understand why you might think Minecraft would be an amazing way to connect your brand with others. But Minecraft is a place where players of all ages come together to play, not to be a part of an advertisement.
With that stated, commercial companies, corporate brands, advertising agencies, non-profits, politicians, political action committees, governments, individual artists, and other entities are not permitted to use Minecraft gameplay to promote or market products, services, events, campaigns, or brands unrelated to Minecraft without prior written approval from Mojang or Microsoft.
Specifically, if you are one of these entities or someone who is hired by one of them, we do not want Minecraft or Minecraft assets used to build a Minecraft world, mod, or server to promote your (or your client’s) corporate brand, products, or services, such as:
- Products that aren’t related to Minecraft products or services in playable form
- A company’s television show, movies, or videos through Minecraft gameplay
Here are a couple examples of things that are not allowed:
- A mod created to allow players to play in a world with branded automobiles
- A skin pack containing brand logos
- Minecraft blocks used to build a world or characters from a movie
- A political campaign or rally that takes place in-game
Videos, streams, and screenshots
You are allowed to create, use, and share videos, streams, and screenshots of you playing or using Minecraft. You may also make money from your videos and streams, through ad revenue, if you follow the guidelines in this section.
You are allowed to put footage of our game on YouTube, Twitch, or any other website and make money from them so long as:
- All videos (in their entirety) are free to view (for example there is no pay wall or other charge to view the videos)
- You add enough of your own unique content to the video or stream to make it reasonable for you to make money through someone watching it, for example:
o You can add your own audio commentary to footage of your gameplay
o You can’t just include your logo, web address, or overlays on top of our or someone else’s gameplay – we reserve our right to decide on if your content is unique enough
- You don’t broadcast or distribute videos or streams of full, uninterrupted gameplay via traditional, cable, satellite, and other major broadcast television networks
- Clips of gameplay could be used as reference material if the subject is not the gameplay itself (for example: gameplay may be used in an over the shoulder graphic (OTS) during an interview of someone who plays Minecraft)
- The gameplay is not displayed or projected publicly within physical locations, for example:
o Promoting or advertising big-screen Minecraft gameplay inside any commercial venue like restaurants
o Charging money for Minecraft gameplay, leagues, or competitions in theaters where gameplay is projected onto movie screens
- You don’t create and use videos or streams whose purpose is to advertise or promote products or services unrelated to Minecraft
- You place any title card, end credits, sponsorship notices, and other callouts outside of the actual game content. Sponsors and any callouts must be suitable for children and minors and must not cause harm to the brand
- You don’t sell copies of the videos or streams
To help you, here are two scenarios:
- You create a video with your own unique content and commentary and upload it to a site, such as YouTube, and make money by allowing advertising around the video (we’re cool with this)
- You create a video and distribute it through services like iTunes or Amazon Prime Video and make money by charging for viewers to watch it (we’re not cool with this)
Live in-game events
Minecraft is a great place to meet up and play together. Of course, you may host a 100% in-game event provided you:
- Make the event free to view or attend virtually
- Obtain permissions and clearances from the owners of any intellectual property (for example: music, brands, products, celebrities, performers) you want to use
- Comply with all other laws and regulations in your area
- As always, if there’s outside parties involved, make sure the event complies with the Constructed Promotions in Minecraft section
We reserve the right to stop any event if we feel it doesn’t follow the guidelines we have laid out here.
We want to encourage fans from the community to come together and share their love of Minecraft. What we do not want is for community gatherings to become commercialized.
So, you're free to organize live in-person events if you follow these guidelines:
- The event must be limited to no more than approximately 150 participants (events with more than 150 participants tend to be commercialized and sponsored by companies)
- You may not accept sponsorships for purposes of profit
- You make it clear that you (not us) are responsible for anything that happens during your event
- You’re responsible for determining and complying with applicable laws in your location
- The theme of the event must be appropriate for all ages and not include anything that is illegal
- We recommend you publicly post a code of conduct for your event and make it available during the event
- Do not use official Minecraft brand or assets on your marketing materials create. You may use the Minecraft name in a secondary name, secondary title, or description only.
- Your event must comply with the guidelines provided in the Minecraft Usage Guidelines, Community Guidelines, and the Minecraft End User License Agreement
Here are a couple examples to help you:
- Hosting a casual meet up in your favorite pizza place to talk about and play Minecraft (we’re cool with this)
- Renting a convention center, charging admission and inviting vendors to sell products with a Minecraft theme (we’re not cool with this)
The goal of these guidelines is to help people who want to host small community events. If your goal is to create a convention-sized experience, or if you think your event will be outside these guidelines, or if you’re interested in proposing a formal partnership with us, you can submit a partnership proposal to discuss a potential partnership.
Music and audio
We love music, and we encourage players to enjoy and use music in-game as permitted by applicable laws.
When you use any portion of live music, pre-recorded music, sound effects, and other audio sounds in-game (for example, as a streamer or as an virtual event host), please make sure:
- You have permission from the owners (artists, actors, performers, musicians, songwriters, composers, record labels, etc.) of the audio you want to use
- You have paid any fees (profits, residuals, repeat fees, reuse fees, royalties, or other payments)
- You understand that we are not responsible for the audio you choose, including if your stream gets taken down by your platform due to a copyright claim
Servers and hosting
Playing Minecraft with others is one of the best ways to play. You may host a server for Minecraft. You may even charge for access to the server as long as you follow the guidelines in this section. By “server,” we mean a single connecting address or IP number.
Access to your server:
- Must only be granted to users who have a genuine paid-for version of Minecraft
- Can’t be limited to or controlled, directly or indirectly, by a player owning or having access to out-of-game content, products, or services
You may make money by charging for access to your server by:
- Charging for access to your server, provided that:
o The cost to access the server is the same for everyone
o Everyone who pays to access the server has access to all the mods you chose to enable on your server (except in the case of mods and other admin tool reserved for server administrators)
o Own or control the server and continue to do so for the whole time that you charge for access to it
- Asking for donations, so long as you don’t offer the donor something that only they can use However, you may offer all players server wide rewards if donation goals are met.
- Selling entitlements that affect gameplay provided they don’t ruin other players’ experience or give a competitive advantage in the game
- Selling cosmetics, except for capes or anything that attempts to visually act like the feature of a Minecraft player cape
- Providing in-game display and video advertising that:
o Doesn’t hurt gameplay or give some players any competitive advantage
o Follow the guidelines in the Constructed Promotions in Minecraft section
- Selling and using in-game virtual currencies as long as they:
o Have no real-world value and can’t be cashed out, used, transferred across other servers, or converted into any other real-world currency
o Don’t give the impression that the in-game currency is from or affiliated with Mojang
o Don’t look like or have a name like Minecoins or any other virtual currency
Regardless of how you choose to make money to support your server, you may only do so if:
- All servers, entitlements, and advertising are suitable for audiences of all ages (for example, gambling, pornography, violence, terrorism, explicit lyrics, or other unsafe/mature content) and they don’t harm the Minecraft brand
- You make it clear that you are responsible for all end user data privacy and protection requirements
- You don’t hide or alter any of the dialogs or prompts that are part of Minecraft (this includes the End User License Agreement (EULA), warning messages, and error messages)
- You provide any user who gives you real-world currency an online payment and purchase history for purchases made with that currency
- You provide information to users on all the content and pricing applicable to your server before a person joins, signs up, or signs in
- You don’t host or distribute malware, spyware, or engage in illegal activity through your server
- You require any social influencers (for example, on YouTube, Facebook Gaming, Instagram, Twitch) promoting your server to disclose their relationship with you and follow the guidelines published by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission
We want Minecraft to be a place where players can have fun and a trusted place to explore, build, and invest their time and money. Please use your common sense and discretion in creating a safe, fun, and trusted environment for all players. We reserve the right to decide if the way you are monetizing your server is consistent with our brand. In short, don’t do evil things to players and you should be fine.
Extended functionality and modifications
We love how Minecraft inspires creativity in the community. Over the years, we have seen a lot of modifications that people have made to enhance their Minecraft.
By modifications (“mods”) we mean an original plug-in that extends the functionality of Minecraft but that doesn’t contain a substantial part of our copyrightable code or content. We have the final say on what constitutes a mod and what doesn’t. When you combine your mod with Minecraft, we refer to the combination as a “modded version” of Minecraft.
You may create, use, or distribute a mod if:
- You distribute the mod only and not a modded version of Minecraft
- The mod doesn’t create a play-to-earn function where players earn real-world or out-of-game currency or in-game currency that can be cashed out for real-world currency
- The mod cannot be used to directly or indirectly verify whether a player owns or has access to out-of-game content, products, or services that affect in-game features and functions
Basically, we don’t want mods that affect players’ experience and creates scarcity of in-game content based off out-of-game conditions. For example, a mod that directly or indirectly checks a player owns an NFT to unlock skins, functions, or other in-game experiences is not ok with us.
Books and other publications
We have seen and read so many great stories created by our fans. We think it’s great that so many in the Minecraft community want to share stories based on Minecraft.
By “publications,” we mean any written and published work inspired by Minecraft.
You can create publications so long as:
- You don’t use the Minecraft brand and assets anywhere on the front or back covers of your publication:
o Don’t use the Minecraft logo or the word “Minecraft” in letters that look like, or attempt to look like, the style of our logo
o Don’t use Minecraft artwork or images taken from official product packaging, merchandise, or marketing materials
o The name “Minecraft” can’t be the first word or dominant part of the title of your publication, the name of your publisher, or the name of a series of books
o You may use the name as a secondary name or secondary title
o You may, however, use screenshots of your original Minecraft creation (provided the overall cover doesn’t create the impression that it is an official Minecraft publication or authorized by Mojang or Microsoft)
- The Minecraft name isn’t used as the first word or dominant part of the title, the name of the publisher, or the name of the series of books. The Minecraft name can be used as a secondary name or title
- Your publication has enough of your own unique content to make it reasonable for people to want to invest in your publication, for example:
o Your publication shares a story of your adventures exploring and surviving in the world of Minecraft (we’re cool with that)
o Your publication is a coloring books, poster, sticker book, or chart that just copies our assets (we’re not cool with that)
We want to encourage our fans to make, share, hand crafted toys, clothes, and other products inspired by Minecraft with the community. We have created these guidelines to help hobbyist fans share the fruits of their creative labors and even make a little money from their unique designs. What we don’t want is someone to try to commercialize our name, brand and assets or run a business selling products featuring our name, brand, or assets.
To us, a unique design is something that adds enough personal creativity to make the work distinctive and original.
You may make and sell certain individual handcrafted products that feature your unique design so long as you conform with all these additional guidelines:
- The product contains enough of your own personal creativity to make it distinctive/original to be considered a unique design and does not use any of the Minecraft brand or assets as the dominant part of the product or design, for example:
- A hand-crocheted blanket with the texture pattern of the Creeper (we’re cool with that)
- A box that features Steve’s face in the Minecraft textures but with green eyes (we’re not cool with that)
- Don’t use any of the software, music, or other audio from Minecraft as part of the product
- The product is not mass produced or distributed through a major retailer
- You don’t make and sell more than 20 product items using the same (or substantially similar) design, for example:
o You make and sell 20 T-shirts using design A and 20 T-shirts using design B (that’s ok)
o You make and sell 21 T-shirts using design A or you make and sell 20 T-shirts using design A plus 3 mugs using design A (both situations aren’t ok)
- The products may only be sold through a website, service, or channel that independently records the quantities of the products sold and enables us to independently verify the quantity sold
- You don’t make more than $5,000 USD in any calendar year from the sale of the product
- You comply with all other laws, regulations, and legal requirements
We love the idea of you, our community, doing cool things and want to support your creativity. We understand that you may want to share your creations with others and even make money off what you’ve created. We want to empower you to create and share. At the same time, we want to limit those who would take things too far. Hopefully, these guidelines help you understand what we are ok with you doing and what we aren’t.
If something isn't covered by these guidelines and we haven't otherwise said it's okay, that probably means we don't want you to do it. In any case if it isn't covered, please don't do it without getting written permission from us. If something is specifically covered and permitted by these guidelines, our account terms or end user license agreements applicable to any of our games then you don't need to contact us.