It's been a while, but we have some good news out of Games Workshop. Someone finally got the memo regarding the fan animation scene.
That's right, the man behind Astartes got the Seal of Officialdom from Games Workshop. He, along with the folks behind The Exodite (a Tau fan film project) and another team doing one on the Iron Warriors also announced the good news yesterday.
Yes, the catch is that GW now hosts the videos and some copyright-infringing elements got replaced, but this is very much a win-win situation. Not only did the film project get made official, so did everything going into it: the Retributors chapter are now official Imperial Fists successors, the xenos will be fleshed out down the road, and so on. Count on the same being done for the others.
Games Workshop wins because they have a pool of talented animators that understand the brand doing work for them now. The animators win because they have legal sanction and material support. The fans win because now there is guaranteed to be more from these animators going forward, which means that there will also be more action in the fan scene; see the posts on the short Death Korps of Krieg and the Siege of Vraks for that.
Indirectly, this benefits the lore channels on YouTube like Luetin09. Not only do they have more material to cut videos for now, but they too now have a path to official sanction if they want it. Luetin's in the best position for this, but there are others about as good as Luetin is--yes, including Arch--and I'm sure GW's looking to see if they can farm out online lore media to them down the road.
Yes, we still have the issue of this being a Big Corporate IP, but these are now increasingly well-known issues with crowd-sourced solutions being worked out to resolve that problem; the lessons learned from losses elsewhere are being applied here. Someone at GW has remembered what their core competency is, and they're focusing on that while farming out IP exploitation to others better at it than them.
It's hardly perfect, but better this than the cult compounds that are the Devil Mouse, the BBC, and CBS. Now to get folks to stop making a damned idol of their entertainment.