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It's funny.  Laugh. The Almighty Buck The Internet Games Technology

Entrepreneur Makes Millions Selling Virtual Land 142

Posted by Soulskill
from the expensive-patterns-of-electrons dept.
kkleiner writes "How much would you pay for a piece of imaginary real estate? Anshe Chung has made millions renting it. Today, Anshe Chung Studios has 80+ employees managing thousands of rental properties, helping design new 3D virtual chat rooms, and making tons of money on virtual to real currency exchanges. Anshe was the first person whose virtual property exceeded a real world value of 1 million dollars, and Anshe Chung Studios is perhaps the single largest third party developer of virtual property ever."
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Entrepreneur Makes Millions Selling Virtual Land

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  • by jimmydevice (699057) on Thursday August 25, 2011 @02:20AM (#37202058)
    A new paradiem for the declining economy.
    When I was younger, we called it castles in the sky.
  • Re:I'm conflicted (Score:4, Insightful)

    by wvmarle (1070040) on Thursday August 25, 2011 @03:13AM (#37202350)

    Actually it doesn't really bother me, let them just go ahead.

    Many real-life games come with expansion packs as well. Settlers of Catan was (is?) a very popular one where people could buy extras to play with. It enhanced their enjoyment of the game, so they put down money to buy more parts for it - no problem with that, is there?

    Magic the Gathering is another game that has many expansion options. Many cards are there, some are becoming increasingly rare and have become collector's items. People pay a lot of money for it - even though it's basically just a piece of printed paper. There surely are people trading in this kind of cards, whether they make a living out of it I don't know but it will be possible.

    These virtual items I don't think are that different. It's a game, people enjoy it, and are willing to pay extra money to enjoy it even more. Some (probably most) of these traded items may be available to anyone playing enough, others may be created one-off by the game designer, whatever. But not everyone is willing to do all that work, they just want to buy the finished product. And as long as they're not scammed (i.e. they get what they pay for) it's fine with me. Let them go ahead.

  • by dadioflex (854298) on Thursday August 25, 2011 @03:17AM (#37202374)
    To be fair 99.999% of people will pass and be largely forgotten within 3-4 generations. Probably 99% of potters, blacksmiths and even architects toil in complete anonymity and their work will be effectively unattributed within their own lifetimes. Don't sweat it. I used to get angry at all this virtual malarkey, then the economy tanked and I realised it was all virtual.

    I find your testicle-shocking vision to be intriguing, please tell me how to sign up for your newsletter.
  • by Serious Callers Only (1022605) on Thursday August 25, 2011 @03:49AM (#37202538)

    Hey look, these are your VERY OWN 1's and 0's! We are taking painstaking measures to make sure that absolutely NOBODY ELSE has this same arrangement of 1's and 0's. Sure, we could randomly generate them and then check them by md5 sum against all other files in our database, but NO, we design them JUST FOR YOU!

    A great painting is simply an arrangement of inexpensive paint on canvas, a great novel is simply familiar words rearranged on a page, great music is simply the same notes rearranged, and great software is simply 1s and 0s (NB *never* a random collection of bits). Yet somehow all these things are valued above mediocre paintings, novels and software, and people are willing to pay for certain arrangements of 1s and 0s, not because they are stupid, and all 1s and 0s are the same value, but because particular arrangements of information are valuable.

    As we move the boundaries of our world to encompass more of the virtual than the real, information will become increasingly valuable, not less valuable. Digital information is also easier to copy than real-life encodings of information, which forms an interesting counterpoint, but that doesn't mean that 1s and 0s are inherently value-less or that any arrangement of them is the same as any other. Quite the reverse - it is becoming more and more clear that information (or order if you prefer) in and of itself has value, entirely independent of the physical world.

  • by AmiMoJo (196126) <mojo @ w orld3.net> on Thursday August 25, 2011 @04:19AM (#37202684) Homepage

    You might as well argue that a painting is just some oil on a canvas, a digital photograph is a string of 1s and 0s. Creative works have value because they require effort to create.

Numeric stability is probably not all that important when you're guessing.

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