They’re Games, But The Monopoly Money Is Real

Real money is being spent on virtual goods–estimates put the outlay at a cool $1 billion this year. Some say the pixel dust industry could grow to $17.3 billion in 2015.
feature_wwf.jpg
Alex Pham of L.A. Times reports that about one in 10 Americans reached into their wallets last year and spent an average of $30 on pixelated swords, outfits and other non-real items used in online games such as Habbo, Pet Society and Club Penguin.
Why waste real money on intangible items? According to a researcher with the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology Vili Lehdonvirta, people buy intangible items to gain status, identity, membership, class and performance.

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am now head of brand strategy and creative direction at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.