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"Write something worth reading or do something worth writing" A blog by Amy Willis, a multimedia journalist based in London

Virtual reality – becoming too real?

After reading this week about the theft of billions of virtual cash from the space game EVE Online, it seems even virtual reality cannot escape fraud, theft and the recession. How ironic.  Games pitched as the perfect mental escape from reality now being infiltrated by the things people try to escape from.

A player known as Ricdic who was chief of Ebank- now known to be a 27-year-old Australian man- stole £200billion virtual kredits and traded them for real money to pay for medical bills and a deposit on a house. When gamers heard of the theft they all rushed to remove their kredits – sound familiar?

ebankdollardanat425 Ricdic has now been booted out of the game for breaching terms and conditions stipulating that virtual cash cannot be traded for real money.

But CCP, the Icelandic owners of EBank, seem to be emerging as the real winners. They have done well recently as more people choose to stay in instead of spending precious pennies going out. And this extra bit of publicity from virtual cash thefts certainly won’t damage things.

It does however raise a few questions about the future of online gaming if the line between reality and virtual reality continues to blur. And if stealing virtual cash has a real life impact does this mean there is cause to introduce virtual police and virtual laws? A scary thought.

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Filed under: blog posts, Technology, , , ,

One Response

  1. floradrury says:

    how exactly do you get to be head of a virtual bank? and how does virtual money translate into real money? and if the virtual money can be actual money then was it ever virtual? far too many lines being blurred here…

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