Avalon Ventures Founder Says FarmVille Creator Zynga Could Be Best Bet in 27 Years

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available on the site. Players can buy a tractor for their farm in FarmVille, which enables them to farm faster, or a more powerful weapon in Mafia Wars, or you can buy more poker chips to bluff your opponents in TexasHoldEm. “Now if you multiply small amounts times 3 to 5 percent times 235 million users, you know, pretty soon that’s real money,” Kinsella says.

farmvilleSome observers might shake their heads and ask why players would pay real money for virtual goods. Kinsella says, “Think about it. There are a lot of things that we do in the quote real world that are kind of virtual, if you will. For example, you send someone a birthday card. They read it, they laugh, they throw it away in the trash. That’s not a lasting gift that you’ve given someone. Flowers, for example, they wilt. So there are real-world things that you’re willing to pay a value for that are in the ones and twos, three, four, five dollars. It’s a nice gesture; it’s the right thing to do; it’s a nice thank you; whatever. But you do not expect that it’s going to have any great significance to the recipient. Virtual goods are kind of the same way, except there is literally no cost of the goods sold.”

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Bruce V. Bigelow was the editor of Xconomy San Diego from 2008 to 2018. Read more about his life and work here. Follow @bvbigelow

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