RMT in Gaming

Something I see over and over again when I'm reading about MMOs is the notion that Real Money Trading is an unnatural and artificial occurence. The thing is that it's not - there is no such thing as an isolated economy. Or rather, there is, but it's the artificial one.

What I'm saying is: The crossover between economies is a normal thing. If one kid gives another five cents for a trading card, then you have a crossover. If that same kid gives her friend a trading card in exchange for an item in Neopets or somesuch, that's the same. If you have a situation where one D&D character hands over an item to another on the basis of an exchange of pizza between the players, there you go, same thing. It takes an artificial agreement between all the participants in an economy that crossovers won't happen, to prevent them.

So the "unspoiled", RMT-free game is actually the anomaly, the artificial state. This is something that doesn't seem to be understood in many discussions of the crossover.

Posted by Drew Shiel at January 16, 2006 3:08 PM

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