On Virtual Currency

Will a virtual currency for online gamers & services be effective in the Philippines? Why?

I do not think that virtual currency for online gamers and services will be effective in the Philippines, though it is active or done here nowadays. In the type of economy that our country has, and how the flow of money is going nowadays, I don’t think that the online gamers would probably spend much to use virtual currency just for the online games. Yes, there will be online gamers that will practice this but not all, not everyone and it will not be effective. Another reason is that the age bracket of online gamers in the Philippines merely consists of the youth, and the youth here does not have the capability to waste time and money. The country is really getting busier nowadays and the youth goes with it as well. On the other hand, the addictive online games will still be an opportunity for online gamers to spend real money for virtual currency, and still, youth are fond of playing and playing! But, their parents wouldn’t be allowing them because school is more important, they’d say. Youth’s money still comes from their parents’ pockets, even though some have part-time jobs, they will still be scolded because of playing online games and focusing only on doing it.

I found an old article stating that Philippines is not banking on virtual currency yet and a chief marketing officer of business portal and e-commerce site Yehey named Elaine Uy said, “If you look at the online users in the country, everyone is already selling something on the Internet. But, there’s no payment gateway or medium by which they could perform their transactions.” Then she added, “I guess it will take a lot of convincing to make users comfortable with virtual money,” and that consumers are still wary of the security threats that plague activities conducted via the Internet. And I, definitely agree! At this point, there may still be some who aren’t comfortable with it.

How do you define virtual currency?

Virtual currency is used to buy virtual products and services within a variety of online places; which include social media, virtual worlds and online games. A key revenue driver within social networking sites, virtual currencies are particular within each online game. Characters or avatars in virtual worlds own things within the context of the virtual world and users will collect each games’ virtual currency to purchase land, supplies and various items used to enhance their status and add points.

What are other examples of virtual currency and how Filipinos are reacting on them?

Virtual goods have been in popular demand, driving revenue in Asia and Europe for years . In the past, the United States had only devout gamers spending money on virtual goods; driven by the popularity of widely appealing games for social networks such as Facebook and MySpace, this is rapidly changing . Zynga reported that direct purchases of virtual currency and goods accounted for most of its more than $100 million in revenue for 2009 .

Players of massively multiplayer online games (MMOs) such as World of Warcraft, spend real money on virtual currency to purchase swords, houses and magic wands for their in-game avatars . In RestaurantCity, a game by Playfish, 18 million active users manage their own café, while 62 million users cultivate a farm and purchase game dollars towards additions to their farm in Zynga’s FarmVille.

In the article entitled “Rising fraud threats in virtual worlds”, the author emphasized that virtual worlds are playgrounds not just for people who want some online fantasy role-playing, but for cybercriminals who are looking for places to launder money and steal data. There have been other threats in the virtual worlds. A virtual illness wiped out entire servers of users in World of Warcraft in 2005 when a design flaw allowed the disease to spread throughout low level players. Meanwhile, user-created code caused a virtual terrorist attack in Second Life, according to the report.

Because virtual worlds appeal to the underground, there is also the possibility they could serve as honey pots to attract criminals and terrorists and provide counterterrorists a glimpse into terrorist activities.


One thought on “On Virtual Currency

  1. It’s nearly impossible to find knowledgeable people in this particular topic, however, you sound like you know what you’re talking about!

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