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Comment Re:And, yet... when violence is involved... (Score 1) 232

This could be also because while studies have shown the effect of games in some cases (like this one, even if I fail to see the importance of being a video game, or other cases where people with phobias are "trained" around them using games), studies which find links between videogames and violence are non-existant. And still, it should be VERY easy to prove, just by looking at the percentage of minors in jail for violent crimes which are avid violent videogame players. I'm also sure you remember the statistics (posted here on slashdot) showing that in the years after the release of Doom, violent crime went down.....

Comment Re:An interesting market experiment... (Score 1) 159

Another Korean MMO player here (I play rappelz).
The business model is interesting: basically there is nothing ingame which forces you to buy anything, but buy-only items help in leveling or make you more powerful for a short time, or provide decoration to personalize your character. From what I've seen it works well. There's a large part of population which is ready to spend a lot of money (I've heard people hitting the cap, which is something like $500/month) either for powerleveling or just to have the cool gear. Another approach is to use this as a money-making approach: want to buy some nice item? Go buy stuff with real money and then sell/trade it to get the nice item you want. This happens a lot, and makes game maker hate RMT ("gold farmers") because they cut into their profits.
What is not clear is the long-term effect. I mean: as the server population increases in level, they have access to a lot of in-game money, allowing them to buy basically anything, and lowering their need to spend real money. Unless there's a fresh arrival of new players who will spend money for the buy-only items the profits will go down. Also, there's a "saturation effect": the decorative items are often buy-once-use-forever: when everyone has one then it's over, forcing the company to keep putting up other (usually more powerful) items.

Second Life Businesses Close Due To Cloning 409

Warren Ellis is reporting that many Second Life vendors are closing up shop due to the recent explosion of a program called "Copybot," designed to clone other people's possessions. From the article: "The night before last, I was looking around a no-fire combat sandbox, where people design and test weapons and vehicles, when an argument broke out; a thing going by the name Nimrod Yaffle was cloning things out of other people's inventories, and claiming he could freely do it because he'd been playing with Copybot with employees of SL creator/operators Linden Lab. All hell broke loose, in the sort of drama you can only find on the internet. Linden Lab's first official response? If you feel your IP has been compromised by Copybot, we'll sort of help you lodge a DCMA complaint in the US. Businesses started shutting down moments later." Update 20:43 GMT by SM Several users have mentioned that the Second Life blog has a few thoughts on this issue and quite a few comments from users already.

Whom computers would destroy, they must first drive mad.