Blizzard targets Warcraft gold sellers

Merchants threatened with PayPal ban.

Companies and individuals attempting to sell in-game gold to World of Warcraft users are being threatened with a PayPal ban in a new crackdown by developer Blizzard on real money trading in the MMO.

According to Curse, Blizzard complained about the practice to online money transfer service PayPal last week, claiming the gold sellers were guilty of IP violation.

PayPal has since started mailing out letters to larger merchants, threatening to block their accounts if they continued to trade.

The letter read, "If you feel your sales do not infringe upon the intellectual property rights of the Reporting Party, please complete the attached Objection to Infringement Report by January 21, 2011.

"Should you choose not to object to the report," it concluded, "you will be required to remove all World of Warcraft Merchandise from the website [url removed] in order to comply with the Acceptable Use Policy."

Regular Warcrafters should be more than familiar with the gold selling phenomenon, courtesy of spammy pop-ups constantly appearing in the chat window advertising the services.

For the uninitiated though, the practice sees dealers posing as players to sell on gold, characters, powerleveling, and other items – often obtained through hacks or bots - for real world cash.

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Fred Dutton

Fred Dutton

US News Editor

Fred Dutton is Eurogamer's US news editor, based in Washington DC.

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