Chinese Farmers and Wal-Mart

The corelation should be obvious. I imagine some people might not even know what I mean by “Chinese Farmers”, though.

The concept of farming in a massivly multiplayer online game is that you kill certain enemies or monsters over and over trying to “harvest” money or specific items. It’s really part of any MMORPG at any given time. You need money or you want a more powerful item, you might farm it. The “Chinese” part comes in with the business built behind selling in-game items and money for real world money. In theory, you hire a handful of cheap workers (hence the China part) and employee them to play the game for hours on end and sell the resulting items to other players. Maybe you are playing World of Warcraft and you need one hundred gold, you can buy it for $40.00 USD for example. Obviously this violates most MMORPG terms of service or end user license agreement. It also may cause problems for people trying to play the game where farmers are at work. I’m not totally convinced it’s a viable business model.

So, the Wal-Mart part is next. There are people who utterly despise Wal-Mart and feel that Wal-Mart is a destructive force that kills small businesses. Wal-Mart moves into a town and wipes out all competition. And the people who utterly hate “Chinese Farmers” will tell you that they ruin the game economy and make the game less fun to play. Neither would be around if there weren’t enough people throwing money at them to be profitable.

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