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Reader Comments (137)

Posted: Jan 13th 2012 10:10PM stebtr said

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To add to my previous comment and address the black market / taxable income concern.

If Blizzard is adding a feature to exchange real-money, you can be damned sure they're going to be 100% compliant with tax regulations around the world. If they send more than the minimum reported income to a person within an annual period, I can guarantee a 1099 will be issued and the recipient will be responsible for paying tax on that income.

It's said on the official website that the "cash out" feature will be handled by a third party payment service. So it seems that Blizzard will delegate the complicated responsibilities of financial/tax obligations to other company(ies) that are already established for handling them.

Ultimately if an end-user doesn't pay taxes on their earnings (whether from Blizzard through "cash out" transactions in D3, or from their job), responsibility falls on them.

Also to address another point, individual one-on-one auction trades in the game don't need to be tracked and reported as earnings - only "cash out" transfers when users convert their battle.net virtual currency to real currency (for a fee).

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 6:33AM Deadalon said

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@stebtr

Im sorry but Diablo is not just US game. It spreads over many countries that have diffrent taxe systems and no.. Blizzard will NOT send any form or informations to those countries so their citicents will be paying taxes for their income.

Claiming that this will be legal because BLizzard follows US laws is just bull. And thats why many countries are now going against the RMAH - not only Korea.
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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 6:35AM Deadalon said

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@stebtr

Cash outs will not all go through battlenet accounts. Players can deal directly between paypal accounts without that money going through Battlenet for cashouts.
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Posted: Jan 13th 2012 10:49PM drunkingamebar said

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That just shot the shit out of Blizzards freemium/Premium model.

Posted: Jan 13th 2012 11:26PM Alph said

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So... how do I get a copy of the korean version? Seriously, I'd actually buy this game if they dropped the RMT AH. (I can overlook/ignore all the other negatives)

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 12:54AM drunkingamebar said

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@Alph I feel the same way.
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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 12:33AM stebtr said

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You guys know there will be server realms for the different regions, right? Everyone asking about getting a copy of the Korean version, you can buy your copy local and create a profile to play on the Korean realm, RMT-free!

If you do wish to partake in "cash out" transactions then you need to play on the realm for your country. But otherwise Blizzard has published that they endorse people playing on different realms.

So they don't need to drop the RMT feature in your country for you to avoid it!

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 4:07PM drunkingamebar said

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@stebtr

Played Diablo on 28.8, I sure in the hell don't want to play Diablo 3 on 14.4. Most American's would probably lag out 20 minutes into the 1st dungeon, log back in to find themselves dead 2 foot from the door they walked in..

S. Korea has awesome internets, but ffs it's on the other side on the world.

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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 7:23PM stebtr said

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@drunkingamebar Fair point. Though after realizing it's only the cash out feature that will be removed for residents of South Korea and the realm they play on is likely to span all of Asia, it's not going to matter what realm you play on. The RMAH will exist everywhere (even in South Korea). South Koreans just won't be able to get real cash out of the system.
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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 12:43AM stebtr said

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Actually I take that back.. it's just the "cash out" operation that's restricted from South Korean players, not the entire real-money auction house.

They can still earn battle.net currency and use it to buy other Blizzard games/products, or use it towards other items in the RMAH, they just won't be able to exchange it for real cash.

Posted: Jan 15th 2012 5:42AM Space Cobra said

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@stebtr

In Japan (and actually, in some American places) they have had a system to skirt around the "cash out" option. For Pachinko, you used to get money for playing that game based on how many balls you took out. They outlawed that and called it "gambling".

The Pachinko owners then went to a system that circumvented that. You can purchase a prize and go to a place offsite and exchange that prize for money. In America, they have a token system in certain gambling halls, where you exchange tokens for chips. Not too different from Vegas, where they treat stealing chips as a crime, but the chips themselves are not actual money.
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Posted: Jan 15th 2012 6:15AM pcgneurotic said

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Good points, all.
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Posted: Jan 16th 2012 3:14AM pcgneurotic said

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Good points, well made. Let's see what happens next.
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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 2:13AM (Unverified) said

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Oh dear lawdy, there are plenty of reasons to hate Blizzard, this isn't one of 'em.

RMT will create "addicts"? Gee, I'm thinking the actual game itself would, rather than a minor economic activity that is optional. Most people are addicted to the actual, core aspect of the game itself - downing whats-his-name-who-will-be-the-final-boss, for instance, rather than playing Mr. Monopoly with the auction house.

Pay-to-win? Anyone who actually follows the news will know that PvP gear is excluded from the RMT. And is there really a competition for a "Diablo world first"?

And finally, please divest yourself from thinking "derp, Blizzard is a money-grubbing company". Well yes, that is true - they all are. Even the sainted Trion Worlds is, and don't fool yourself into thinking that they would put "gamers first" ahead of profits. Must be nice to still living a sheltered life, but I'm too old and cynical to believe that a wide-eyed, passionate developer is doing this solely for the joy it brings. Life's not a Santa Claus movie, guys.

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 10:19AM (Unverified) said

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@(Unverified) I'm shocked and confused about the pure rage over the real money auction house. I look at diablo as a single player or group with a few friends type of game. It doesn't affect me if someone buys all their gear or none of their gear from this service. And I don't understand why so many people are upset about it. I like the idea of maybe getting a few bucks out of a game I purchased while I play it. I like the idea of being rewarded for playing a game I enjoy with a chance to continue to play either WoW for a reduced price, or invest in new games from Blizzard, a company, I respect for their services and products(That's not to say, I don't think Blizzard needs some room for improvement on things, but I do think they do a pretty good job at keeping there customer base fairly content and are constantly working to improve.)

Yes Blizzard is a money grubbing company with profits in the billions. Yes you are overpaying for the majority of your purchases from them including your monthly subscription. Yes this will let them generate more income on a single purchase of a single player game. Are you forced to use the service? No. Will someone else having better gear than you affect your single player experience with or without this service? No.
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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 10:09AM Zeddakis said

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If this is gambling then anyone who invests in the stock market is gambling. Instead of investing, so instead of using a investment firm for my retirement I should use a bookie.

Someone who buys something at a yard sales, because they think it is undervalued and can be sold for more on eBay is gambling.

Just because you don't like something don't give you the right to use some poor way of defining it, because you think that angle might give you a chance to get it removed from the game.

Watching people who want this feature removed from the game latch on to this is pathetic.

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 8:32PM stebtr said

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@Zeddakis Agreed. There's no logical reason that the exchange of virtual goods for money should be considered gambling.

People contributing money to the virtual marketplace are doing so to purchase a known entity with value they deem to be worth their money. Not to take a completely random chance to make more money.
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Posted: Jan 14th 2012 10:14AM Scullz said

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+ a little 1?

read my previous post! ;)

This whole economic talk is just ignorancy...not referring to your point.

I remember when a friend of mine said "I dont buy gold with money, its just stupid"

I told him, why u go fishing for? He said; its my hobby. I said well, wow is my hobby... How much did you pay for your fishing rod..He said 300$. I said how much you pay for bait...He said "I like the live good stuff, i get mine fresh for about 50$ for a morning's worth.. How often you fish? 2 times a week 3 if I can...sigh... point made..

I said, I pay 15 a MO for wow and I bought 10k gold for 30 bucks..I dont waste gass to drive anywhere, dont worry about any other expenses except internet... I LoL'ed when he couldnt argue with me....

I have made more money off WoW than he ever did from fishing and I got my enjoyment out of it.

Regulated, illegal, what have you... Black market trading I.E. player auctions etc.. in the end bring money back to the economy!!!

If I have a full time job making 30 bucks an hour, and only have time to play on weekends..I can buy a lvl80 account from my cousin who spent 3 months getting ALL epics for 150 bucks. = I just spent 5 hours in getting a lvl 80 account with all epics..just so I could pvp or w.e my heart desired.

What is my cousin gonna do with the money he earned... go out spend it in games.. movies ...AMERICA!? lol... pay for more wow time since he got bored of a lvl 80 and start over??..

Bottomline. PEOPLE will pay for a shiny axe who tears shit up.
Why? well why not!! this is my hobby and metaphorically speaking, I would like to have a bigger boat to catch bigger fish!!!)..

Who am I to deny you of taking your girl to a movie? Why dont you produce your own fucking movie and edit it and but it in a reel and have her watch it!?! doesn't sound much fun anymore does it? LoL..

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 11:29AM Superman0X said

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I see a lot of comments, but no real understanding of what the issue was.

The issue is that people pay for the game (money in).
People have a chance to win an item (drops)
People can redeem the winnings for money (auction house).

By allowing the players to 'cash out' they have in effect made the game itself a form of gambling. This did not apply to other games, because there was no legal method to cash out (i.e. the reason why you can not sell gear, characters, etc).

Posted: Jan 14th 2012 7:03PM stebtr said

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@Superman0X People buy the game to play it, not to gamble on the chance that they might win big. In fact, based on most the comments I'm seeing it looks like many people AREN'T buying the game strictly because such a chance exists.
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