South Korea to ban trading of virtual game items

South Korea is perhaps the biggest gaming market in the world when it comes to online games. Now the country's government is going to impose a ban on a feature that most of the games in South Korea have; the trading of in-game items.

The Korea Times website reports that the government's Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism will pass a law that will ban the trading of virtual items in games sometime in July. According to the organization's head of its content policy division Kim Kap-so, "The main purpose of the games is for entertainment and should be used for academic and other good purposes."

The Korean government contends that over 60 percent of in-game items are actually obtained via bots. Such actions could encourage teenage crime, according to the ministry.

The actual guidelines for the new law will be given to the country's provincial administrations and local police will be ordered to enforce the new law when it goes into effect. People who are found guilty of violating the law could receive a large fine or even up to five years in jail.

The story claims that online games that register items and scores that can later be exchanged for real money has expanded from just 50 in 2009 to over 1,500 in April 2012.

Source: Korea Times

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