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Monday, November 27, 2006

Inside the World of Gold Farming: Playing Games for Money

Gold farming, which is defined as gathering items of value in a virtual world in order to resell them, may represent the next phase of blue collar labor. According to a forthcoming documentary, half a million Chinese make a living of about $100 a month playing games like World of Warcraft. Interestingly, these laborers don't get the lion's share from the sale of WoW gold: most of it goes to brokers like IGE that interface with would-be gamers in rich countries that don't want to or don't have the time to "legitimately" gain items in a virtual world.

Clips from the documentary can be found on MTV and YouTube and show glimpses inside the world of gold farming, giving a rare look at actual gold farming operations. While World of Warcraft actively discourages gold farming by shutting down accounts and banning IP addresses, other virtual worlds like Second Life encourage users to profit from their online gaming.

A thriving virtual economy exists in Second Life, which faces its share of challenges, but it seems like a different approach is being taken: yes, fun is emphasized, but economic incentives are also offered. World of Warcraft is game-based: getting to the next level is seen as a display of skill and shouldn't be diluted by being able to "cheat" by buying gold from gold farmers. Broader-based virtual worlds aren't defined as games, and so aren't subject to the same norms.

[via GigaOm]


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I think that this is a very stupid game, it just takes all your time and it is so useless!!!!!!!!!!!Better listen to the music athttp://mp3step.com/, that more fun

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