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Role Playing (Games) The Almighty Buck

World's First Virtual Banking Licenses 45

Posted by Zonk
from the virtual-bankers dept.
An anonymous reader writes to mention a new, unique situation in Massively Multiplayer games. The Entropia Universe title has broken new ground by being granted five virtual banking licenses. These are exactly what you think they are: in-game bankers can transfer Entropia funds directly to your real-world bank account as real world cash. The well-known conversion rate between EU cash and real money allows this; more entertainingly, you can withdraw RL cash into EU notes via the banks as well. From the article: "These two-year exclusive licenses will be available through the public auction within Entropia Universe and will be open for bids beginning mid January 2007. Entropia Universe is the only virtual universe on the internet whose currency has a fixed exchange rate with the US Dollar. Its currency can easily be moved between Entropia Universe and the real world using an ATM card. The Entropia ATM card can be used to instantly withdraw real cash from over 1 million ATM machines worldwide"
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World's First Virtual Banking Licenses

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  • by Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) on Tuesday January 09, 2007 @03:49PM (#17528348)
    These are exactly what you think they are: in-game bankers can transfer Entropia funds directly to your real-world bank account as real world cash.

    So essentially, the Entropia "world" has been given the right to manage a fiduciary mass. A virtual world and a virtual fiduciary system, but a real one nonetheless because it has currency rate with real greenbacks.

    Consider the definition of a state: statehood for an entity as having:

    - a territory: Entropia is virtual real-estate, but it's not so far-fetched to say it's a real territory, since people use its virtual space
    - a population: Entropia has gamers
    - a government: the game maker I suppose
    - the ability to mint money: well, it has a currency now, backed by a currency rate recognized by another state
    - the ability to print its own stamps: that would be easy to implement, with an in-game certified email system separate from regular email
    - the capacity to have relationships with other, recognized states: it does de-facto, since an already recognized state recognized its currency

    So, I think in international law, Entropia could claim statehood. Their position would be even less shaky than, for example, Sealand. This is a very exciting and new development indeed.

No problem is insoluble in all conceivable circumstances.