eBay Banning Virtual Item Sales

Article from News.com:  eBay bans auctions of virtual goods

Well this makes my weekly tracking report on account sales in World of Warcrat difficult to continue.  I was waiting to restart it once things stablizied, since the release of The Burning Crusade (the expansion) it has been unclear what the right metrics were.  There have been a few level 70 characters up on eBay, but not many.  So given this announcement I’ll delay the report.  I’ll start tracking gold again this week. 

This is unfortunate.  I, for one, think that being able to sell your account is a good thing.  It you put thousands of hours (like most level 70s) into this, you should be able to sell what you’ve accomplished.  It’s a shame a few purists think you should just have to throw all that away. 

Games are a big hobby for many people, most hobbies involve collection/building and generate some value (although are not often wildly profitable).  MMORPGs are no different – as you play you collect stuff for your characted and you build it up.  This has some value – no where near the time you put into it – and you should be able to extract that value if you leave.  It is unfortunate that some game companies do not take this broader view.

Please also read The Prince, The Pauper, and The Purist, if you are interested in this topic.

So, what do you think ?