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Posts with tag peons4hire

Gold spammers at it again

Last week reader Jay sent me a screen shot of something I hadn't seen in a while – a gold seller using /tell to spread their wares. For a long time Blizzard has maintained this is illegal activity, and has taken substantial steps to negate the spammers ability to do this. In game spam protection done behind the scenes has been working well. However it looks like the gold spammers have found a way around this.

Initially I was pretty surprised to see the screen shot. After all, this hadn't been happening much. However a couple of days after getting this, I found some gold spam in my chat log as well. I was floored. Now they're back to their old tricks, and even some new ones.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, News items

Gold sellers hold account hostage

We all deal with them. Their annoying spam, their flooding of the general channels. Those gold sellers deserve the kiss of death. Wouldn't it be nice if their industry just went and slept with the fishes?

In a tactic that even Don Corleone himself would be angry at, gold sellers have sunken to a new low. John M. wrote in to tell us the tale of a fellow guild mate who fell under the gaze of a gold seller who took his account hostage, demanding payment from his guild. Sit back, open up a new window with this Godfather music, and read on after the break.

I'm gonna make you an offer you can't refuse.

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Filed under: Virtual selves, News items, Economy, Making money, Rumors

Blizzard puts Peons4Hire out of work

This is probably the best news I've heard so far all year: Blizzard has won an injunction against Peons4Hire (we'll say their name now), which means that the one-time constant chat spammer is now legally banned from interfering with the game. It sounds like Blizzard sued on nearly all the causes that were speculated on a while ago, and as a result, have outright won their case: according to the injunction, In Game Dollar (the company that advertised Peons4Hire) is "permanently enjoined" from "making any use of the World of Warcraft in-game communication or chat system to advertise any website, business, or commercial endeavor."

Which means, in no uncertain terms, that we'll never see those ingame tells again. The only drawback is that, as Virtually Blind says, this is an injunction, not a decision, and so it doesn't have the "precedential weight" that a decision might-- Blizzard can't really legally use this to walk away with an easy win in the next case that comes along. But over the course of a few different settlements, including stuff happening in other virtual worlds, there is a legal precedent being established against using one company's service without permission to advertise another.

I'm just happy that, after being driven nuts by all that chat spam for so long, Blizzard was able to walk away with a solid victory.

Filed under: Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Making money

Trying to beat in-game spam

Polonaise over on Suramar has defeated a lot of enemies in Azeroth, but there's one she can't beat: the in-game spammers that flood the chat channels with nonsense crap and links to their websites. These guys are tough to beat because they do it by rolling level one alts (usually with nonsense names so that they can make them quickly without having to come up with a unique name on the server), /joining the chat channel they want to spam in (chat channels have no level or space restrictions, so a level one alt can spam the Hellfire Peninsula chat), and then ditch the alt before players can react.

Neth, as an official Blue response, says Blizzard is working on it, and the best thing to do is simply report the spammer through the usual channels. Works for her, but it lacks the instant revenge factor, and even if the GM deletes the offending account, most of the spammers use free accounts to do their dirty work anyway. Some other players suggest doing a little vigilante work (feels better, I agree, but could probably get you in trouble eventually). There's always the option of leaving chat (which I'm doing more and more lately), but then there's the chance you might miss out on something important).

In the end, we go back to Polonaise for what seems like the best solution so far: allow players the ability to turn off messages from every character below level 10, unless whitelisted on your friends list. At the very least, it would make spammers play for two hours before running spam messages, which might push their investment over the top of profitability. In fact, I'd go as far as to suggest giving players the option to ignore all messages that don't come from friends or guildies. I doubt that'll ever happen (Blizzard wants this to be a social game, and shutting everyone out goes against that), but it's a definite solution to the problem of seeing spam all the time.

Filed under: Items, Blizzard, Economy

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