Posts Tagged ‘gold farming’

Chinese Prisoners Used As Gold Farmers?

By Quintin Smith on May 26th, 2011.

Funny alt-text joke has been given the afternoon off

This one’s a little disturbing, so if you’re in a good mood then proceed with caution. The Guardian has spoken to a Chinese man by the pseudonym of Liu Dali who claims that during his spell in a prison in North-East China, among the traditional back-breaking labour of breaking rocks and “whittling chopsticks and toothpicks from planks of wood”, the guards also made him and the other convicts play massively multiplayer games in twelve hour shifts, in the interest of selling the gold online. I’ve never bought MMORPG currency online, but I imagine if I had I’d currently be feeling quite ill.
Read the rest of this entry »

, , , .

232 Comments »

World Bank Estimates 100k Gold Farmers

By Jim Rossignol on April 8th, 2011.

BUY GOLD AND SHOES PROBABLY. LOVELY SHOES.
A report over on the BBC website highlights research done by the World Bank on virtual economies. The report, which can be found here (PDF link, and full of other stuff about the virtual economy), suggests that gold and item farming in MMOs was worth $3bn in 2009, and employs up to 100,000 people in China and Vietnam. That’s a lot of virtual shoulder pads, eh?

It’s interesting that this stuff actually generally supports Western players’ predelictions to spend on virtual items (the report claiming that a quarter of MMO players spend money on virtual goods, although it’s not clear whether than includes free-to-play stuff as well as farmed stuff, I assumed it does) and whether the move to free-to-play will cause Chinese gold-farming to disappear again, as their activities become less profitable.

, .

30 Comments »

China Bans Goldfarming (Not)

By Jim Rossignol on June 30th, 2009.


Update: see this blog entry.

Informationweek has reported that the Chinese government’s latest internet reforms include a ban on trading virtual currency for real currency. Richard Heeks at the University of Manchester, who is quoted in the report, estimates that around 80% of the world’s gold farming takes place in China. Furthermore:

“The Chinese government estimates that trade in virtual currency exceeded several billion yuan last year, a figure that it claims has been growing at a rate of 20% annually. One billion yuan is currently equal to about $146 million.”

I wonder what that will mean for China. I guess it’s a drop in the ocean for their entire economy, but it’s going to put people out of work. Will it continue illegally? Where will I get my 1000 gold for magic hammers from? Aiie!

.

34 Comments »