Liu Dali, a former prisoner of a Chinese labor camp, is claiming that prison guards forced detainees to play online games, such as World of Warcraft, as a part of a huge money-making scam.
“Prison bosses made more money forcing inmates to play games than they do forcing people to do manual labor. There were 300 prisoners forced to play games. We worked 12-hour shifts in the camp. I heard them say they could earn 5000-6000rmb a day. We didn’t see any of the money. The computers were never turned off,” said Liu Dali.
Liu Dali apparently spent his days breaking rocks, assembling car seat covers, and playing computer games at night. If he didnt complete his credit quota, the prison guards would punish him. “They would beat me with plastic pipes. We kept playing until we could barely see things.”
It is referred to as gold farming when users build up and trade game credits for money in order to save hours of playing time. Gold farming is rampant in China and other developing countries. Apparently, many Chinese gamers have full-time jobs as gold farmers.
To give you an idea of how rampant gold farming is, nearly $1.65 billion dollars worth of virtual currencies was traded in China in 2008.Further reading: Off Topic, World of Warcraft