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The Almighty Buck Entertainment Games

Massive Bank Fraud In EVE Online 138

Posted by Soulskill
from the virtual-madoff dept.
djconrad was one of several readers to point out the latest major scandal in EVE Online, the space MMO notable for its large, player-driven economy and the entertaining stories it often generates. A player named Ricdic, chairman of a large in-game bank, decided to embezzle roughly 200 billion ISK (the game's currency). Ricdic exchanged the ISK for about $5,000 to pay off real-life debts. Massively has an in-depth write-up about how the theft affects the game and its players. Since the scandal became public, there's been a run on the virtual bank, and its executives are doing what they can to reassure people that it will continue to exist. Ricdic was banned, not for the embezzlement, but for trading 200 billion ISK for real currency, which is forbidden by EVE's EULA.
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Massive Bank Fraud In EVE Online

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  • Slow news day? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by zergl (841491) on Friday July 03, 2009 @11:14PM (#28577309)

    It happened early June already [scrapheap-challenge.com], though it apparently took quite a while for it to propagate to the mainstream news.

    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Panzor (1372841)

      Then why didn't you submit it then?

    • Re:Slow news day? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by blankinthefill (665181) <blachanc@gmaiEULERl.com minus math_god> on Friday July 03, 2009 @11:17PM (#28577327) Journal
      Either way, I don't know why this is surprising except for one fact: That it didn't happen much, much sooner. That's what happens when there's no real world consequences for your behavior (or you think you can avoid them).
      • Re:Slow news day? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by zergl (841491) on Saturday July 04, 2009 @12:37AM (#28577751)

        Either way, I don't know why this is surprising except for one fact: That it didn't happen much, much sooner. That's what happens when there's no real world consequences for your behavior (or you think you can avoid them).

        That's not surprising. It happened before and it will happen again.
        EVE has a very rich history of large scale scams, reaching from investment scams like this one to long-planned infiltrations of alliances like the infamous heist [klaki.net] by GHSC (who incidentally ripped assets to the tune of 200ish billion ISK off one of the major alliances again just recently [eveonline.com]).

        The only "surprising" and novel bit about this story is that he apparently/supposedly didn't do it for the e-fame or e-gain, but for RMTing the scammed ISK because of real life troubles, which was the reason for his subsequent banning.

        • I don't see it taking this long as suprising at all.

          That's a lot of work for $5k.

      • Re:Slow news day? (Score:4, Interesting)

        by girlintraining (1395911) on Saturday July 04, 2009 @12:42AM (#28577779)

        I don't know why this is surprising except for one fact: That it didn't happen much, much sooner.

        Because people are inherently honest. Dishonesty is an abnormality. Even in this case, it took $5,000 in immediate real life needs for this person to cause harm in a video game to a fictional economy, and the only punishment is that a few ones and zeroes got flipped around so they didn't like a few other ones and zeroes anymore. It's this very fact that pisses game theorists off to no end -- agents in the system continue to act completely irrationally (ie, to trust) when the rules clearly indicate every advantage for the "cheater" and next to no consequences.

        Trust is inherently illogical and irrational and yet it works. Society is built on networks of trust -- most of our institutions and infrastructure that allow life to go on the way it does right now depends on the vast majority of people playing by the rules. Rules which, for the most part, are arbitrary. There are very few rules that are "naturally derived" -- For example, not murdering people is a naturally derived rule because we can't exactly make going extinct legal. O.o Traffic laws are, for the most part, arbitrary -- red means stop, green means go, drive on the left (or right), etc. But we'd never be able to use the shared public resource (the highway) without them.

        Human beings are social creatures. In order to survive, we have to trust one another. Every social organizational structure is derived from this basic concept -- it simply varies in how we trust, to what degree, and to whom.

        • Re:Slow news day? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by jollyreaper (513215) on Saturday July 04, 2009 @01:25AM (#28577957)

          Trust is inherently illogical and irrational and yet it works. Society is built on networks of trust -- most of our institutions and infrastructure that allow life to go on the way it does right now depends on the vast majority of people playing by the rules. Rules which, for the most part, are arbitrary. There are very few rules that are "naturally derived" -- For example, not murdering people is a naturally derived rule because we can't exactly make going extinct legal. O.o Traffic laws are, for the most part, arbitrary -- red means stop, green means go, drive on the left (or right), etc. But we'd never be able to use the shared public resource (the highway) without them.

          Human beings are social creatures. In order to survive, we have to trust one another. Every social organizational structure is derived from this basic concept -- it simply varies in how we trust, to what degree, and to whom.

          If you think about it from an evolutionary point of view, trust is an excellent adaptation for a social species. Being trusting is the sort of thing that might not work so well for a given individual but works out for the species in the long run. It's like cuteness. What's the evolutionary purpose of finding creatures with infantile features and proportions cute? Easy: it's so we don't murder our young. If those little darlings didn't worm their way into our hearts at first sight, it's for damn sure they wouldn't make it through the third night of random crying, feeding, and diaper changes.

          Of course, it's always possible to push the boundaries of society to the point where people stop trusting. We're in danger of this very thing right now. I mean shit, there's a lot of trust involved in working for two weeks with the understanding that there will be a paycheck on payday! I've seen smaller companies so fucked up that the boss has to pay on a weekly, sometimes daily schedule because people don't trust him. We're seeing that in the economy at large as the expectations of the common citizen have become more and more cynical through time. Republicans exist to fuck the poor to death. Democrats exist to pretend to be an alternative to getting fucked to death and while they're taking no direct part in the rape, they're standing in the corner stroking their puds while the Republicans go to town.

          Once that social contract is broken, all the scotch tape in the world won't put it back together again.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by plasmidmap (1435389)

            If you think about it from an evolutionary point of view, trust is an excellent adaptation for a social species. Being trusting is the sort of thing that might not work so well for a given individual but works out for the species in the long run.

            Except evolution acts on individuals, not species. In order for trust to evolve, individuals must gain benefit from it.

            It's like cuteness. What's the evolutionary purpose of finding creatures with infantile features and proportions cute? Easy: it's so we don't murder our young. If those little darlings didn't worm their way into our hearts at first sight, it's for damn sure they wouldn't make it through the third night of random crying, feeding, and diaper changes.

            It's so we don't eat our own children, which would remove our genes from the population.

            • Evolution acts on - or rather, through - genes, behaviors and niches, not species or individuals. If my nieces and nephews prospers because of something that's in my genes, and I don't reproduce, then my parents' genes have done better by producing me than they would have if they didn't. Think how few ants and bees reproduce, yet how successful they are as species.

          • I mean shit, there's a lot of trust involved in working for two weeks with the understanding that there will be a paycheck on payday!

            That's actually an interesting point. I have a salaried job where I am paid monthly IN ADVANCE. So my first day on the job I was immediately handed a nice big check. In all my years working I've never encountered anything like it but I admit while I have "better" job offers come along every so often I can't see going back to biweekly after the fact paycheck.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by bogjobber (880402)

          Because people are inherently honest. Dishonesty is an abnormality.

          That's true to a certain extent, but I would add a large caveat. People are honest when they know obeying the social norms will be rewarded, and there is a real chance of being caught or punished for their dishonesty. Most people don't steal, but if a situation like the article describes occurred in meatspace, people would be stealing like crazy.

          The trust can't co-exist without strict societal rules that reward cooperation and discourage

          • by Stargoat (658863)
            That's funny. I took the exact opposite view in this situation.

            I was thinking that a group of people were to choose silence, they would be more likely to pass their genes on. Evolution in a social species favors trust.
            • by bogjobber (880402)
              But being selfish sometimes makes you more likely to pass on your genes as well. So while we are social creatures, that doesn't mean people aren't looking for an opportunity for personal gratification at the expense of others. We all intuitively know this. I mean you've seen people, right? It's not like assholes don't have kids.
          • by lawpoop (604919)
            I think people mostly go by what they perceive as the norm. In other words, "Locks keep an honest man honest". If you perceive yourself to be in a loosey-goosey, anything goes situation, you'll do what you see everybody else around you doing.
        • In real life, a reputation follows a person. No one will invest in Madoff anymore. In the game, a reputation follows the username. If the game does not allow username changes, then being dishonest would adversely affect the cheater's game play, which means cheating/punishment is _a part of_ the game. People probably were no longer willing to play with Ridic anymore. In games like Counter-Strike, if a person does not cover you in one round, then you remember the name, and no longer trust him to cover yo
        • That theory doesn't hold water in other games that have smaller subscription fees (such as RS).

          RS (as an example to the extreme), has an economy that is almost built off currency and prices generated or affected by Pump-And-Dump clans, mage-boxing, account stealing, trust trading, player luring, and public price manipulation.

          The biggest reason for this, in my opinion, is that while EVE has a subscription fee of 15$/month, RS can be played for free or have additions for 5$/month. With pre-trade restriction p
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Opportunist (166417)

        The problem is, there IS actually no real consequence. What is the consequence? The account was banned. That is a consequence ... how? Sure, the average gamer would probably be a little shocked, a few years of his life down the drain, but someone whose goal is to con? He doesn't play anyway.

        It's also not a safeguard against never doing it again. He could just hire someone to make an account for him.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by KDR_11k (778916)

          It's a game about betraying, conning, etc. Only the RMT part was an issue at all, Eve is all about ripping others off ingame.

          • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

            by Opportunist (166417)

            Yes, we already established that it's a simulation of real life economy.

          • by mpe (36238)
            It's a game about betraying, conning, etc. Only the RMT part was an issue at all, Eve is all about ripping others off ingame.

            But they don't appear interested in having real world laws used against the guy.
            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by Dun Malg (230075)

              But they don't appear interested in having real world laws used against the guy.

              That's because he didn't break any real-world laws. He violated the terms of service for the game. All that means is that they won't let him play anymore. There's no law against taking real money in exchange for a minor data modification (setting a variable to 200,000,000) that's utterly inconsequential in real life.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Should it be illegal to scam people in the game ? As I understand it - this is part of the game, scamming people....
        Then he broke the EULA - and they kicked him out of the game... Any real world consequences are not justifiable in my opinion.

        What I don't really get is - why the buyer isn't kicked out as well... surely 200 billion ISK in EVE can't be that hard to trace... or do they have money laundering services there ? How on earth would they work in a log-all virtual world.

        • by NightRain (144349)
          If they traced the purchaser then he would have been banned as well. But given that it was likely some anonymous alt for an isk seller, it's not exactly news that it got banned
    • by Grail (18233)

      If it gets more people interested in the game who cares that Slashdot is a month behind the curve?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by plasmacutter (901737)

      madoff has been sentenced and the trial is over..

      people have gotten used to the spectacle of embezzlement and ponzi schemes, so we have to find another one.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Seumas (6865)

      I'm not really sure why this is newsworthy again. There is a massive bank scam or other fraud or corporate infiltration every couple months in EVE-Online going back a number of years, now. It's a part of the game and happens regularly. Space is a cold and hard place.

  • He probably has a job lined up now as a normal bank exec or a job in government.
  • Oh yeah! That'll work. And just how many accounts you think the guy has that's doing the very same thing right now? His new name? Likdik... Life - Art... which is more real?

    • by andersa (687550)
      Well, you have to fill out your personal details, like your real name and where you live to get an account, so presumably they can find all accounts and ban them that way. Also, from what the guy stated, he doesn't want to play anymore. Remember that he exchanged the in game currency for real life currency, which is the whole problem. Otherwise the scam is perfectly within the rules of the game and had it only been for that, he could have continued to play the game.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by jonbryce (703250)

        And of course, people always tell the truth on web registration forms

        • by andersa (687550)
          There is a difference between making a bogus account on some random forum or website, and registering for something you pay for usually with a credit card.
  • by whisper_jeff (680366) on Friday July 03, 2009 @11:18PM (#28577335)
    EVE continues to be an interesting study in politics and intrigue but I will forever fail to understand its appeal as an MMO. I've tried playing it - it totally does not appeal to me in any way, what-so-ever. It was about as dreadfully boring as a game could possibly be without being nothing at all. In my opinion. But, its political backstabbings and manipulations of its systems sure as hell generate some interesting stories... Intensely interesting and dreadfully boring at the same time.
    • by jollyreaper (513215) on Saturday July 04, 2009 @01:16AM (#28577911)

      EVE continues to be an interesting study in politics and intrigue but I will forever fail to understand its appeal as an MMO. I've tried playing it - it totally does not appeal to me in any way, what-so-ever. It was about as dreadfully boring as a game could possibly be without being nothing at all. In my opinion. But, its political backstabbings and manipulations of its systems sure as hell generate some interesting stories... Intensely interesting and dreadfully boring at the same time.

      Perversely enough, those are exactly the play mechanics they wanted to emulate.

      MMORPG's are weird beasts. On one hand, it doesn't feel like an RPG because nobody is in character, nobody is playing according to the setting's fluff. It all feels like a bunch of game geeks dorking around on a video game. But on the other hand, these seemingly average, real-life people can be anything but. I'm not just talking about the mild-mannered high school mathlete who becomes a griefing dickhead when he gets online, I'm talking about the people who work out the elaborate con jobs. There was one massive screw-job that took over a year to plan and execute. You don't really know anyone.

      I played EVE briefly and am firmly in the carebear camp. If a game is any bit more complicated and involved than an FPS deathmatch, I'd prefer to be playing as a team rather than in competition.

      The time it takes to put into a game like this, to get anywhere, to pull off these virtual coups, it's mental illness in a can. We're talking obsessive behavior, unhealthy commitments of time not seen outside of stalker/murderer ex's and the terminally ambitious.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Opportunist (166417)

      "Metagaming" is thicker in EvE than in any other game out there, mostly because your chance to impact the playing experience of other players has never been higher. EvE is a social-economic experiment of sorts, a lot of the experience you have depends on the interaction with other players.

      Of course, if you're not into that, there are few MMOs out there that could be any more boring.

    • by DrXym (126579) on Saturday July 04, 2009 @03:40AM (#28578489)
      This learning curve [wordpress.com] may explain why EVE is so intimidating / boring.

      Anyway, once you get into it its actually a great game. Perhaps you have to have liked playing Elite back in the day to appreciate it. It's a massively online version Elite. Aside from all fighting you also get the politicking, scams, crimes and so forth that make the game world hugely dynamic.

  • by Manip (656104) on Friday July 03, 2009 @11:19PM (#28577349)

    You might think I'm being sarcastic but really. Each time I read one of these stories about an Eve problem I only want to play the game more. I've played other MMOs and having full banking institutions, investments, and companies exist is within its self very rare.

    I mean all games have some kind of monetary system and by extension a way to trade money for goods. But very few are able to recreate the real world so closely.

    Take for example World of Warcraft, you have gold, and you can trade. But you'd never have real businesses exist because the game just doesn't work that way, let alone banks.

    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The reason eve fails is BECAUSE it replicates the real world too well. When you "play" Eve, one gets the distinct feeling that one is actually not playing a game but doing work. The feeling of the drudgery of work.

      Maybe CCP will learn from the financial crisis that a utopian hypercapitalist world is not only a fantasy world, it's not all that fun.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by tibman (623933)

        Aye, i get tired of boarding trade vessels and ransoming the crew's lives for cash to pay off my debts. I do enough of that in the real world!

        • by zergl (841491)

          Aye, i get tired of boarding trade vessels and ransoming the crew's lives for cash to pay off my debts. I do enough of that in the real world!

          Am I the only one that had to think about Somalian pirates peacefully mining in High Sec after reading this post? :)

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by cratermoon (765155)
            Oddly enough enough, there's a corp in Eve known as the Somali Coastguard Authority.
      • The real problem is that we live in a society that makes "work" so miserable. It should be something we want to do.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by hedwards (940851)
          And where exactly do you find people that want to be janitors and coal miners? It's a rather Utopian view to suggest that it's something that everybody can have.
          • Those, and other tedious work can be fully automated, or at the very least break it up into much shorter shifts. so the creative work would be designing the machines to do it. Believe it or not, it takes a lot of effort to make a job as miserable as possible, and the reasons for it are very easy to see. It serves to distract people's attention away from from those who actually make the work so odious. And another thing, am I being told that because utopia is "impossible" to achieve, I should just shut up an

            • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

              by Anonymous Coward

              The system of monetary exchange already provides fully and completely for the automation of tedious tasks. For example, putting wheels on cars, putting beans in bags, creating pencils from wood. The world has a pool of labour and a stream of output, and the sum of the latter equals the standard of living (although not equally distributed). Monetary exchange imperfectly but quite regularly pushes towards the maximisation of output given the available labour by reallocating whatever labour is available to whe

            • by Khyber (864651)

              "Believe it or not, it takes a lot of effort to make a job as miserable as possible,"

              We know someone that's never had the experience of being management. ;)

            • by Dun Malg (230075)

              Those, and other tedious work can be fully automated

              Nice handwave. You've clearly never tried to develop a fully automated system. But hey, since they have robots building cars, it must be easy, right?

              or at the very least break it up into much shorter shifts

              So when the septic tank needs pumping out, and it's the database engineer's turn to run the pumper, we just let the trained pumper try to manage the database? And we let the DB engineer try to operate a solid waste pump? I love you cartoon communists. You all seem to think that unpleasant jobs require no skill or training, and that everyone can just take turns

            • by whiledo (1515553) *

              Ever read Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut?

              You should.

      • by zergl (841491) on Friday July 03, 2009 @11:58PM (#28577545)

        The reason eve fails is BECAUSE it replicates the real world too well. When you "play" Eve, one gets the distinct feeling that one is actually not playing a game but doing work. The feeling of the drudgery of work.

        Maybe CCP will learn from the financial crisis that a utopian hypercapitalist world is not only a fantasy world, it's not all that fun.

        I have to disagree on that one. EVE is what you make out of it. You can do tedious and boring stuff like run an industrial enterprise (aka Spreadsheets Online), mine asteroids (mindnumbingly boring), do PVE (which is admittedly terrible in EVE) combat or you can go the PVP route (be it as a pirate, mercenary, grunt in one of the major power blocks or declaring war on carebear corps for "protection money") and blow up other people's pixels leading to tasty bitter tears for your drinking pleasure (complete loss of whatever you're flying when you get blown up can lead to amusing smack talk).

        Or you could do something completely different and do the social engineering and scamming (completely accepted by the TOS as long as you stay within game mechanics) that keeps EVE in the mainstream news.

        It's a sandbox, there should be something in it for you to have fun with as long as you can befriend the general gameplay, setting and the UI (which is constantly improving) surrounding it.

      • Eve is, for the most part, a giant sandbox. If you like the idea of a space based MMO, but you find Eve to be all work and no play, then quite honestly you're doing it wrong.

      • One or two of the very few married EVE Online players in the world spent $100 of their household's real life cash to buy a freighter in-game only to have it stolen from them and then some other real life bill didn't get paid and then they faced their wives' wrath and as Porky Pig once said... badebadebadethatsallfolks!

      • by Draek (916851)

        Its not all that fun to *you*, but I can perfectly see how a young economist or a math undergrad studying game theory may find it fascinating.

        Personally, if it didn't have monthly fees I'd probably be playing it now, the concept sounds interesting to witness at the very least, if not to experience it by oneself. Though I hate scamming and PKing so I'd probably be nothing but a bum in there.

  • In my head: (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Alzheimers (467217) on Friday July 03, 2009 @11:23PM (#28577373)

    Kneejerk response #1: This jerk is why we're all going to have to pay income taxes on our MMO loot someday.

    Kneejerk response #2: Finally! The solution to the health care crisis...Gold Sellers!

    Kneejerk response #3: You're only jealous you didn't think of it first.

    -----------------

    My Final Conclusion: I just hope his kid is getting better.

    • by Fumus (1258966)

      Kneejerk response #1: This jerk is why we're all going to have to pay income taxes on our MMO loot someday.

      Every transaction in EVE is taxed. The exact percentage depends on your social skills, but the ISK you get for killing stuff as well as for trading is reduced by a small percent.

  • A Bit of a Puzzle (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hardburn (141468) <hardburn@wumpus- ... OWnet minus city> on Saturday July 04, 2009 @12:13AM (#28577605)

    I'd like to take a minute to address concerns over EBANK's solvency, that is, it's ability to pay out withdraws. As I mentioned before, EBANK moved a large portion of it's assets into cash and we've been merrily burning through it today as people have drawn their money out in concern. We also haven't had deposits coming in - so the money is only flowing in one direction....out.

    That's ok.

    We still have enough cash to handle withdraws and as of the time I write this; withdraws have been actioned. I would also like to point out a few other things; we have had many persons asking when they can deposit money again, as a show of support and to provide EBANK with an infusion of cash. On top of this, we have had private loans offered to us totaling 100 billion and if we really have to....we still have the ability to issue a Bond or if really required, we may finally launch an IPO.

    Why am I pointing this out? I want to provide assurances to our customers that your money is safe with EBANK. We are solvent and continue to build liquidity even in this challenging environment. Even if we have a solvency issue, we have many options at hand to address that should it arise.

    Again, thank you to those who have expressed support.

    I don't play Eve anymore (purely out of regard for personal time management), but I've read many statements like the above of business dealings in the game (not necessarily about scams, just straight business). What I'm always struck by is that if you're capable of finagling all these things in the game, what's stopping you from doing it in real life?

    When this thought first struck me, I was making plans to run an in game POS as a business, and had produced a full business plan and profit analysis spreadsheet. Which is exactly what you'd expect to need at the start of a real business.

    Supply and demand, buy low/sell high, and negotiations are all key skills in running a business in the game, but no more or less than they are in real life. Real life has a lot more government regulation (CCP takes a largely hands-off policy as long as you're not trading ISK for real money), but as long as you can navigate that, you'll have the skills you need for a real business, too.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ceoyoyo (59147)

      People in real life are a little less likely to just hand over their money to joe blow. Which is why banks are chartered and insured by the government.

      As far as opening regular businesses, absolutely.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by GryMor (88799)

      EVE moves faster than real life, being a game, getting a basic income is easy through a variety of means (mining, piracy, manufacturing, bounties and, in this case trade). Proper management of capital can trivially have returns of 10% a month with almost no work or 100% in a few days on the market with a lot of work.

      This is coupled with high risk, but it's in game risk. Even wiped back to 0 you can recover back to 'normal player' levels radiatively quickly. If you took the kind of risks that are normal in g

    • Obvious.... (Score:4, Funny)

      by raehl (609729) <raehl311@yah[ ]com ['oo.' in gap]> on Saturday July 04, 2009 @01:56AM (#28578099) Homepage

      What I'm always struck by is that if you're capable of finagling all these things in the game, what's stopping you from doing it in real life?

      Body odor.

    • Hey man, don't leave us with your story ending there.......let us know, did you start a successful business?
      • by hardburn (141468)

        I was, and still am, a consultant, which is technically a sole proprietorship. Leaving the game helped me spend more time on that.

        Within the game itself, the POS plan didn't take off. Common moon resources (which are mined by POSes) had their market flooded by alliances who setup POSes for territory purposes rather than profit, and the less common resources were already snatched up.

    • I'll also add, this is why I don't play video games much any more........real life is so much of an adventure that games seem less exciting in comparison. They are fun, but compared to what I can REALLY do.....
    • There are a couple of things that make starting a buisness in real life harder IMO.

      1: giving up the day job to start a buisness is a pretty risky move, especialbly when that day job is the only thing paying the mortgage that keeps a roof over your families head. Starting up a buisness without giving up your day job is pretty hard because you will most likely be in your day job during "buisness hours"
      2: most buisness require capital to start. You can possiblly borrow some in the buisnesses name but much of i

  • EVE Deposit Insurance Corporation. Banks pay a small premium to EDIC, in turn it insures everybody's deposits.

    Of course, to keep it from going broke immediately, there would have to be some kind of in-game sanctions against cheaters and embezzlers! Does EVE have a "jail"???
    • I think that's what the banning represents. The offenders are not allowed to interact with the EVE society anymore.
      • No it isn't. Up until the point where the guy decided to sell the ISK to ISK sellers for real money, it was all perfectly ok. Worse thefts and scams have happened, and it's all sanctioned by CCP.
      • How so?

        "WTB, one account"

        • How so?

          "WTB, one account"

          That would be the same response a virtual jail sentence would get, though.

  • Wow, I didn't realize that federal inmates were allowed to play Eve!
  • Remember the big flap with Second Life banks when Ginko Financial failed? [wired.com] They had a real bank run in Second Life, with avatars crowding branches demanding their money.

    Linden Labs then banned all "banks" in Second Life unless operated by a regulated real-world financial institution. A few real banks established a presence in Second Life, but most (maybe all) have given it up by now.

    The problem with banks in a virtual world is that what banks really do is sell loans. It's hard to collect from an avata

    • by Wingman 5 (551897)

      It's hard to collect from an avatar.

      See that's the best part of eve, you can collect from the avatar.

      That sure is a nice Battleship you have there, it would be a shame if something where to "happen" to it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by GryMor (88799)

      Loans are EBANK's bread and butter. The loans are mostly collateralized (there are in game mechanisms for locking resources so they can still be used by a third party but can't be moved) or guaranteed by a trusted party (effectively using their reputation as collateral).

      Added to the compartmentalized capital management they have, and no one person can kill the bank, take 200bn? Sure, but that isn't death, just a really big chunk of profit...

  • by Organic Brain Damage (863655) on Saturday July 04, 2009 @08:31AM (#28579385)
    Banning Ricdic for making $5,000 in real money from the game will probably result in him making more real money, from real work, in the real world. He might even meet a real girl and have a real relationship and real children. Hardly seems like much of a punishment, if you ask me. If the developers of EVE wanted to punish Ricdic, they'd have given him two more accounts....for free.
  • Not sure who the bigger fool is, the guy that embezzled all the in-game money or the schmuck that paid $5000 of real money for it.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Dun Malg (230075)

      Not sure who the bigger fool is, the guy that embezzled all the in-game money or the schmuck that paid $5000 of real money for it.

      Try as I might, I can't find a single thing the embezzler did that makes him a fool. He ditched a real-life time and money sink of a habit (EVE Online) and managed to trade it for real-life money and pay some bills. Might qualify slightly as "jerk", but not even a little as "fool".

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