Operation Payback (opens in new tab) has paid out for Counter-Strike: GO's (opens in new tab) top mapmakers, who have earned a fantastic $150,000 between them (opens in new tab) . Payback, you'll remember (opens in new tab) , is Valve's attempt to 'pay back' the game's dedicated community by offering unlimited access to seven of its best user maps, and dedicated servers on which to play them, for a flat $5.99 fee. Considering the creators of those seven maps now have around $150,000 to share between them, I'd say it's proved rather successful.
The operation ends July 31st, but I hope it's an initiative Valve will return to in the future, especially considering how successful it's been. They did something similar with TF2 with the Robotic Boogaloo pack (opens in new tab) , which raised nearly $250,000 for 66 item creators. It's an increasingly lucrative business, this modding lark - and richly deserved, considering how much talent and effort the top creators put in.