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Posts with tag communism

NYT: GAPP and Ministry of Culture clashing over Chinese WoW regulation

The New York Times has brought its journalistic bear to the story earlier this week about China deciding not to approve WoW's release over there under new service provider Netease, and it seems what we thought was confusion between two agencies has turned into a war. On one side, you have the General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP), who earlier this week said that Netease (WoW's local provider of Blizzard's game in China) could not legally be collecting subscriptions on a game that GAPP hadn't yet approved. But on the other side is the Ministry of Culture, who did approve WoW's content when it was run by The9, and are now saying that GAPP "overstepped its authority" by thinking it could "penalize online gaming" at all.

Which means that the silly game of World of Warcraft has fallen smack dab in between two government agencies lobbying for power. In the past, says the NYT, GAPP has approved games pre-release, and the Ministry of Culture has overseen games once they've started running online. But WoW is a weird exception (it has been online for a few years already, and only went offline when Blizzard switched providers), and it looks like both agencies are grabbing for power and the sizable fees that come along with regulation. If they continue to clash, it'll be up to the State Council, China's cabinet, to determine who's in charge. And the NYT says if that happens, the Ministry of Culture has the edge, with lots of friends in the cabinet already.

Meanwhile, Netease hasn't taken the game offline yet, apparently -- they still haven't been given official notice to do so. There's no word on how long this will take to shake out, but even China's players are tired of the fighting; they just want to get back into Azeroth and play.

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

Filed under: Realm Status, News items, Economy

Forum Post of the Day: To each according to his need

It seems the vast majority of drama we've heard regarding guild banks comes from ninja schemes and disgruntled members. Vaela of Hyjal expressed her exasperation with guild banks in the Guild Relations forum. She feels that there is an imbalance between players who donate resources to the guild bank and those who make the most withdrawals. The original poster asked for suggestions on systems to fairly distribute guild bank resources.

The responses focused on cooperation and reciprocity with the guild bank. The purpose of the guild bank is to fun the guild's activities and exchange objects of value. In the end, the system comes off as a communist type of public ownership arrangement, as opposed to the free trade system that rules the auction house. To quote Karl Marx, "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need." Communism as we've known it has largely failed, most likely because people don't fully buy into the system.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Economy, Forums, Forum Post of the Day

Gold farmers arrested in China

Here in the US, you can't really arrest someone for selling gold in-game -- it's against Blizzard's Terms of Service, so they can ban you from the game or even file suit against you, but it's not actually illegal. But in China, under communism, things are apparently a little different. Two gold farmers have actually been arrested by the government for "unfair revenue distribution" -- apparently the two had a disagreement about how to distribute the over $200,000 they had made from selling gold in World of Warcraft.

Word is going around that "unfair revenue distribution" is the actual charge in the arrest, but it sounds like they just had a financial disagreement, so we really have no idea what they'd be charged with. Unfortunately, China isn't exactly forthcoming with how its legal system actually works, so who knows what's really happening here.

Their operation also sounds interesting as well -- they had been going for about seven months, and had a crew of 20 PCs and 20 employees. There's little chance that an arrest like this will make much of an actual difference in the game (and there's no way an arrest in China will set a precedent in the US), but it is an interesting case that we'll follow if we can.

[Via WorldofWar.net]

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Economy

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