Funny Money- Torturing the Gold Spammers

It happens to everyone, that way too cheery greeting from a toon you’ve never heard of that is almost always level 1 and in a starting zone. If they speak before you get the chance to report or ignore them they’ll ask you if you want to buy gold. We’ve mentioned our stance on buying gold before; this post is not about that. Today we’re turning the situation on its head and letting these idiots become a source of amusement instead of annoyance.

During a WoWenomics team meeting a few weeks ago a few of the members of the WoWenomics team got to talking about telemarketers and how they deal with them. The answers varied from the typical hang up on them to politely declining but one team member said he likes to have fun with them. He always puts on a voice or some sort of act that, he feels, makes their calls a lot less annoying. He tells the callers that solicit money for volunteer fire departments that he is an arsonist and the Policemen’s Benevolent Association that he’s a crook. He only answers salesmen with the phrase, “I love it.” Sometimes, he just lays down the phone and blasts the infamous Rickroll song into the receiver or simply says, “hold on for a minute, let me get my wallet.” and never returns. Yes, he is a royal pain in the ass.

Now before you get all upset and think “but how could he do that to the poor retired policemen” etc. you should know that most of these calls are fraudulent. Sure, some of the organizations do actually donate a miniscule amount of their proceeds to legitimate causes but 10% does not a charity make.

Anyway, this got us to thinking about how we could apply the same logic to gold spammers. Over the past few weeks we’ve been testing out our different approaches. Here are our three favorites:

3. Tell the gold spammer that you are extremely interested. You want to buy right away. You MUST know the discount code and web address immediately. Then, before they can respond, put them on ignore.

2. Convince them to come to a city to tell you more about the deal. Say that you won’t deal with them unless you can see who you are talking too. If they are dumb enough to show up, point and /yell “THIS GUY’S A GOLD SPAMMER” over and over.

1. And our number one new favorite way to deal with the gold sellers is… tell them that you are not interested right now but your friend was just talking to you about wanting to buy gold. Give them the name of your trading rival. Let them drive your competitors nuts instead. Works best if you use give them the same name over and over.

Incidentally, we checked with a GM about the above and none of these actions can get you banned. The GM we spoke with did ask that you simply report the spammer instead of interacting with them and we asked in the same polite tone that Blizzard enact policies that deal with the issue effectively instead of asking players to do it. That pretty much ended our conversation but leaves us in the clear to give the spammers a taste of their own annoying medicine. Just so long as you don’t do any soliciting yourself, you are free to find your own ways to torture the spammers.

Oh, and for the record, the best telemarketer prank ever was pulled off a few years ago by comedian Tom Mabe. (Warning: Slightly inappropriate) Try topping that one!

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2 Comments

Filed under Funny Money

2 responses to “Funny Money- Torturing the Gold Spammers

  1. Most companies use bots. You can /slap them, put them on ignore, /w them obscenity all you want. Most of the time it will be like talking to a wall.

    It’s always been a cat and mouse game between Blizzard and the sellers. Some people think it should be simple to stop gold spam, but I think many people don’t realised just how much money is involved and how much money those companies would be ready to pay to find workarounds to any security mesures Blizzard could put up.

  2. Hagu

    I think it is so annoying that Blizzard doesn’t address this. If you had an option that once you reached level 20, you could ignore any pst, say or yell from someone less than level 10 who was not in your guild, party, friends list, it would go a long way. Even an option that it costs a few silver for a stranger to pst me, like in some games, would be nice.

    My comment was if these gold spammers were giving away free Aion keys, you could bet that Blizzard could find a way to ameliorate the situation.

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