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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » Should Gold Farming be Illegal- a real misdemeanor or felony?

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149 posts found

Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/11/10
Posts: 1444

10/07/12 2:34:33 PM#121

Its not victimless. The devs and people who spend thousands of hrs and work there butts off to make games that are put out there are victims of these people ruining in game economy, The players who don't cheat are victims of an economy out of wack , 

the people these farmers hack and still there stuff are victims there are vicitms in gold selling. Not all gold sellers hack and steal from other players but alot do. 

So no this is not a victimless crime, I just don;t think its illegal , It hurts the game they are exploiting and it hurts the players but it's not illegal until they hack and steal from players

Even that isn't a crime since is virtual stuff they steal not real. But it does have victims. 


Advanced Member

Joined: 5/06/11
Posts: 2281

10/07/12 2:37:55 PM#122
Originally posted by Dulu

This is a victimless crime.


I've been saying for years, it's just like the real life "War on Drugs"... You arrest people for selling, arrest people for buying... What are they doing morally wrong exactly?


There is nothing inherently wrong with "Gold Selling" - it's the things that come from making it illegal, that are morally wrong. You make it bannable, so people steal accounts to gold farm. You make selling weed illegal, so people settle their disagreements in the streets with violence instead of using the legal system.



People just never learn.

I'm for discriminalisation of soft drugs 100% because there are incredibly powerful medical benefits to canabis that aren't being explored.

CBD in cannabis has a lot of potential benefits because of it's action on opoid receptors in the intestine, which lowers inflammation and stimulates IL10 production. The fact it's criminal to carry cannabis in many countries means research is stalled.

There is nothing, nada, that does this outside of the CBD in cannabis.

I don't care if cannabis is blocked to regular people, but the fact it's being blocked to people who could benefit from it is terrible.


Novice Member

Joined: 2/09/06
Posts: 59

10/07/12 2:44:01 PM#123
Originally posted by kalinis

Its not victimless. The devs and people who spend thousands of hrs and work there butts off to make games that are put out there are victims of these people ruining in game economy, The players who don't cheat are victims of an economy out of wack , 

the people these farmers hack and still there stuff are victims there are vicitms in gold selling. Not all gold sellers hack and steal from other players but alot do. 

So no this is not a victimless crime, I just don;t think its illegal , It hurts the game they are exploiting and it hurts the players but it's not illegal until they hack and steal from players

Even that isn't a crime since is virtual stuff they steal not real. But it does have victims. 



The people pouring hours into preventing this inherently victimless crime, are bringing it on themselves. Police officers in real life do the same, and actually get shot and killed over this "War on Drugs". It doesn't  justify the war itself.


If you made it legal, there would be no reason to comit violence in the streets over drugs, and no reason to hack accounts for gold. It would be a regulated business. Just like Wal-Mart, or


Elite Member

Joined: 4/29/10
Posts: 2956

10/07/12 2:51:35 PM#124

As others have said.  Most gold farmers/hackers aren't in the country of the players being hacked.


Also, US prisons are overfilled, based on funding, as it is.  And teh damage of these crimes is pretty negligable.


Hard Core Member

Joined: 11/20/05
Posts: 1173

"Don''t touch that squirrel''s nuts!" - Willy Wonka

10/07/12 2:52:12 PM#125

Wow,  ok. Overlooking the obscure notion of this thread, here is my take.


This practice will never be illegal. They are trading in virtual items of no real value that do not exist in the real world and players are stupid enough to have over money for the sellers 'time' in acquiring the virtual whatever's. I say 'sellers time' very deliberately, here is why:


if the law ever acknowledged this practice as 'illegal' or 'theft' it would indirectly assign real-world value to the items/currency being traded/stolen. Once that precedence is set, currency and items that players acquire in-game now have real-world value in the eyes of e law, just like digital songs and movies.


So, if a game company decided to permanently ban a player they would be depriving said player of items the the law has now established a real-world property. So,  does the company owe the player compensation for depriving the player of items acquired while playing the game??


Sounds obsurd, I know.....I mean, it's just a game FFS, right? Lawyers have made sillier things happen lol

Frank 'Spankybus' Mignone
-3d Artist & Compositor
-Professional Amature


Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/21/11
Posts: 7246

10/07/12 3:08:09 PM#126
Us government guy - we would like you to extredite these guys, they're goldfarmers
Chinese / Russian government guy - hahahahaha , oh your serious? No, get out of here.

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 6/17/10
Posts: 6403

10/07/12 3:09:00 PM#127
Originally posted by VengeSunsoar
Originally posted by strangepower


Originally posted by just1opinion

Originally posted by Aerowyn

Originally posted by strangepower  

Originally posted by Aerowyn you are making money off of someone else's product illegally.. don't see it any differn't than people who rip movies or games and sell pirated copies and that's a felony... 
  With that sort of rationale you would see it fit to charge the gold buyers with a felony too for facilitation of a Black Market, like busting the john and the prostitute as well? Sounds like a well thought out idea...
yes same as it's illegal to buy pirated copies of video games.. usually the punishment is worse for the supplier than the buyer as with most things


I understand what you're saying and I agree with you.  The same people that think gold farming and selling gold is okay are probably the people that think ripping CDs or movies and selling them is okay.  Intellectual copyright laws mean nothing to these people, but they do to me and I agree with what you've said.



How do you draw the parallel between copyright infringement and gold selling?


The line is drawn when the selling of gold prevents or causes the developer of the software to lose money or prevents them obtaining the money.  That won't happen until the developer themselves start selling gold. 

But in Guild Wars 2 and other F2P MMO, the developers are in fact selling ingame money.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/08/09
Posts: 29

10/07/12 3:47:12 PM#128


Ok, let me restate what I was saying. Making a profit by selling someone else's property is a crime. Your example of a rent-a-bike messenger is amusing, but it does not relate to the point I was making; in your example, you didn't sell the bike. If you would have sold the bike, i.e. someone else's property, you would have been committing a crime.

People have been tried for virtual infringements.


The problem with charging this activity as a crime is it is often difficult to determine ownership of virtual goods. Also, laws that protect intellectual property are often underrepresented when it comes to these virtual items. Here is a journal artical by Leah Shen, entitled Who Owns the Virtual Items?, that explains some of the problems related to this topic. You will have to go the Duke Law website and enter the author's name, Leah Shen, in the search field. You can read the abstract directly from the website, then download the entire document. The website is as follows:



And? I'm not saying you cant sue some one for a "virtual crime" im saying that gold farming is not a crime, and if you claim the the selling of virtual currency is a crime since it belongs to the IP holder puts you into a legal bind.

You can't prove that any property changed hands if you claim that the virtual currency belongs to the IP owner since in that case nothing except money has changed place.

Like it or not pure gold farming is a service, the same way i can pay some one to walk my dolg or mow the lawn.

Now if we involve the only illegal part of gold selling which is selling gold of compromized accounts it's a completly different story. And if you actualy bothered to read the 2nd article then you would see that thats what it was about, he "hacked" accounts, got the items that the original account owners payed for and moved them to his own account.

But sadly as traditional gold farming and RMT goes you cant make a legal case agaisnt it not in a million years sorry, and yes i don't see nothing wrong with that either.

Also during WoW vanilla i used to play on the top PVE server on the US realms, when every one was broke, repairs costing pretty much as they did during WOTLK, the top end guilds that used to raid 6-7 times a week for 4-6 hours at the time actually gave repair money to every one on a daily bases. And i know for a fact that several of them were buying gold to keep it up from money they got from their sponsor simply because it was not possible to facilitate it other wise, a night of wipes which was not uncommon at the time could cost a tank 300-400 gold, and back then that was more than a week worth of farm unless you got really luck on world drops, not to mention the cost of potions and flasks.



I did take the time to read the article that I posted. I brought attention to the article to support the statement I made, i.e. people have been tried, in real life, for things they have done in virtual worlds. The connection I am trying to make is that legislation does extend to these virtual worlds and, as such, virtual infringement has real life consequences. However, I go on to say that encriminating culprits of these nefarious activities to the full extent of the law is sometimes difficult because two key reasons: 1. how determining ownership of the property is handled; 2. virtual crimes are often underrepresented or misrepresented in our courts of law. Therefore, trials often take a secondary path in seeking justice.

In the case of the second article I had previously posted, the woman was arrested for "hacking", as you said. However, the victim of the virtual crime did not seek out justice because he had someone access his account without consent. He contacted police because she had infringed on his perceived property rights by "killing" his character. This illustrates the problems surrounding IP, and ownership of such, in the video gaming industry and why they are often underrepresented or misrepresented in court. Therefore, IP laws often take a back seat to more obvious infringements, like hacking.

So, how is IP underreprestened or misrepresented? There are no well defined guidelines describing what counts as intellectual property. Most understand that non-physical property, such as ideas, are intellectual property. But what about video game currency or virtual items? Do they fall under the domain of IP? Usually, they are not codified under copyright, patent, trademark, or trade secret laws, as is the case with other IP. But does that not mean they cannot be classed as intellectual property? I believe that virtual goods can and should be protected by IP laws.

How in the hell does this even pertain the the original discussion about gold farming? (Opinion to follow) I believe that virtual items possess certain, inherent property rights. Therefore, someone must have rights to claim that property as their own. Further, that property must be protected by laws. I believe that the owner of such property is the entitiy that idealized it, in this case, the creators. I also believe that anyone who uses these products cannot claim ownership as they, the consumers, are purchasing a limited-use liscense (see EULA) from the actual owners. This EULA is a framework that defines and limits the way in which consumers can use the software. The creators can set up these frameworks of limitations concerning the use of the software because it is their product. Further, the EULA acts as a contract between the liscensor and liscensee. Nowhere in this contract does it say goldfarming is an acceptable act. However, most game companies will prohibit gold farming and gold selling in their EULA. Essentially, the creators are saying that if you farm gold, you are not following our contract of agreement. This is like renting a bike from a rent-a-bike company and signing a contract saying you will return it by 9pm on the same night, but then going to the pawn shop and hawking the bike. This is criminal activity.



Novice Member

Joined: 7/28/03
Posts: 160

10/07/12 5:17:26 PM#129
Originally posted by CalmOceans

Yes it should.

But I think it is easier to punish the game makers instead of the farmers, you will never stop the farmers, but you can stop companies from doing RMT in their games.

Stopping RMT is the first step into stopping farming.

Virtual goods should not be allowed to be traded for real money. It saddens me to see those poll results.

Some kind of in-game RMT can be useful to Companies that make F2P or B2P games, and, after all, selling in game items in order to pay, e.g., server maintenance should be a sort of RMT.

So we close all F2P MMO, all GW serie and we will play only P2P MMO. Well, i think that a person (man, woman) do a crime he, or she, must to pay. In jail or with real money (heavy fine can be a good way to stop some sort of virtual crimes. Or doing some kind of useful job for a short time for free).

But i prefear an in game permaban for goldsellers and goldbuyers and other kind of moral in game infringement. Companies can do hard EULA so people must respect virtual rules.


Novice Member

Joined: 9/11/12
Posts: 94

The problem with virtually every MMORPG: too much Pavlov and not enough Maslow.

10/07/12 6:32:13 PM#130

Simple enough solution: castrate anyone who buys 3rd party gold.

No, really.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/02/12
Posts: 511

10/07/12 6:55:15 PM#131
I think that to sell in-game itens for real money is a violation of the users contract, being punishable only by banishment from the server and maybe the opening of a civil litigation (with fines by property damage, if existent).

"What we are aiming in ArcheAge is to let the players feel the true fun of MMORPG by forming a community like real life by interacting with other players, whether it be conflict or cooperation." (Jake Song)

  User Deleted
OP  10/08/12 6:38:05 PM#132

I have truly lost my faith in humanity...


1) The Polls- My god that's scary.

2) The number of people who think it should be illegal, and why.

3) Most specifically the ones who think it should be punishable by EXTREME punishment (death, 20 years to life, etc.)

4) The extreme ignorance of those who think it is already illegal in their country. The failure of so many who don't understand what law is and what "illegal" actually means in context of a country's laws.

5) The ignorance and irrational assumptions made by so many in this thread without any actual evidence to support what they believe about gold farmers, businesses, law, copyright, prisons, police states, overcrowding, or even the careers of game programmers/artists who work on video games for a living.  (ex. Myths and Rumors believed as fact such as the incorrect beliefs that: They don't pay taxes, they are all Chinese as if there aren't other asian countries besides China, they're all evil criminals ruling over slaves they don't pay, the only way to get gold is through immoral means, the programmers and artists who worked on the MMORPG lose money despite the fact they never will since they've already been paid a meager salary and most likely don't work on the game anymore after release, etc.)

6) The kids so dull, they think that just because I made the OP, I somehow believe it should be illegal. So dull that they fail to realize I made this thread to reveal the ignorance of most here, their irrational thought, and their overall inability to make good or intelligent decisions of what should or shouldn't be law. god...


If it weren't for the 1% of users here and in the world that actually don't fail in any or all of the above, I'd probably /wrist out of hopelessness for humanity. Thank God there are people in this world who aren't blind hateful ignorant children who believe in rumors and extreme assumptions without any evidence or logic to go along with their perverse perspective of reality.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/15/08
Posts: 3723

10/08/12 9:58:47 PM#133
     The sellers are only part of the problem...The real problem lies in the people buying it....With no buyers then there would be no sellers.

Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/11/11
Posts: 369

10/09/12 12:47:05 AM#134
these polls are really scary...

Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/19/04
Posts: 376

10/09/12 1:15:23 AM#135

Want to stop gold farming/selling/hacking of accounts? Follow Entropia's method.

They have a real world currency...PED, exchangeable for real money, you get what you earn/spend. Selling of this currency is fruitless as the amount you can sell it for back to the company equals the same amount, always. Gold sellers would be stupid to try and undersell the company.

Their hack prevention is top-notch, because people have, literally, hundreds of thousands of dollars invested in thier accounts. I know when I played it, I had to go through a rather extensive authentication process to ensure my IP matched my PC identification that I authorized. After the initial log in, as long as you log in from that PC, you have no problems, from a different PC or IP, a ton of problems. IP's change, but as long at it's from the same PC, smooth sailing.

This is the only way to effectively eliminate Gold selling/farming.

Making Gold selling a felony in the States would not amount to much for someone living outside of our country, no government would allow extradition because of virtual world currency fraud.


Novice Member

Joined: 3/18/11
Posts: 1126

What is "real"? How do you define "real"?

10/09/12 1:23:24 AM#136

NO!!!!!   Please keep the government out of it!  They f things up enough as it is!


If bots bother you so much, leave the game.  Stop relying on granny government to do everything for you.

You want me to pay to play a game I already paid for???

Be afraid.....The dragons are HERE!


Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/05/11
Posts: 720

"Kill me, my man kills you, that's how you lose."

10/09/12 1:34:07 AM#137
Misdemeanor is a slap on the wrist... wouldn't stop me regardless.

"I see they watchin' me and takin' notes on my moves, Run up on me it's all I want I ain't got nothin' to lose."


Advanced Member

Joined: 5/30/09
Posts: 888

10/09/12 5:52:53 AM#138
Gold farming is illegal like ripping a tag off of a pillow is illegal. Really nobody cares.

Novice Member

Joined: 10/05/03
Posts: 6721

Gaming should be about fun, not gender equality.

10/09/12 5:54:39 AM#139

Felony? Give me a break, talk about first world issues...

If there is slave labor, no matter what kind of labor, obviously that should, and probably is, a felony.


Advanced Member

Joined: 11/23/06
Posts: 1118

10/09/12 6:06:47 AM#140

Bla bla bla Eula not a legal bla bla bla US vs EU bla bla bla  Service = time bla bla bla

 while anoying due inflation in games, its a very Legal way of doing bussiness in 99% of the word. bla bla bla cant outlaw it. bla bla

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