A Twitter account called TheRealInsider that was posting leaks for upcoming game releases turned out to be a sockpuppet account owned by YouTuber DanAllenGaming, a content creator with nearly 200,000 followers.
First spotted by TheGamer, the story that follows requires a peek behind the curtain of game media.
Content creators (and press, like yourself) often get early access to games coming out in the near future, or announcements that are planned.
This gives the media time to prepare articles and get the coverage flowing, which in turn helps increase awareness and possibly sales of the game.
This kind of relationship is primarily dependent on one thing: an NDA or nondisclosure agreement, also known as an embargo.
NDAs are usually for repeated access to alphas or betas, inviting media to test a game and provide feedback, but can also be used for more direct coverage of an upcoming game or announcement.
Gaming used the “TheRealInsider” account to leak exclusive details about upcoming games. Facebook/Dan Allen Gaming
This allows the developer to control when information is released, while still giving the media time to prepare their content.
Dan Allen Gaming, posing as “TheRealInsider”, took that early access privilege and started leaking information well before the embargo and NDA break dates.
Earlier this month, he went viral on TheRealInsider for breaking coverage of the Assassin’s Creed games well before the official announcements were made.
The gamer apologized on his social media accounts for his actions. Facebook/Dan Allen Gaming
However, he was caught making a mistake and posting a response to TheRealInsider using his DanAllenGaming Twitter account.
The tweet was deleted, but Bloomberg reporter Jason Schreier did some detective work and found that the two accounts often tweet about the same topics almost simultaneously, along with similar messaging patterns.
Dan Allen admitted to apologizing via Twitter and then shutting down both accounts shortly after.
However, his YouTube remains active at the time of publication. The ramifications of breaking NDAs are pretty serious — at best, content and media creators who break NDAs simply lose access to future coverage, and at worst, they could be sued by companies for violating embargo dates.