It is hard to think of anything more surreal than a chinese goldfarmer

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by: Lynette Webb

There was a really interesting article in the New York Times recently that looked at the gold-farming phenomenon. For those who don’t know, ‘gold farming’ is the term given to people who play online games like world of warcraft in a manner so as to earn the maximum ‘gold’ which is then sold on to other players who don’t have the time/skills to earn it themselves.

It’s become a thriving business field in China, even though there’s tension between the ‘real’ players and the ‘goldfarmers’, and it’s not always supported by the game developers. The article is fascinating because it delves deeper than anything I’ve read before, in interviewing goldfarmers and understanding how it feels. The most amazing bit for me was how the goldfarmers in their time off continued to play the game!

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Photo via Flickr CC thanks to Thomas Hawk 

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