Spinks has a great post up on player behavior, and it’s well worth reading for the main points…
but what really caught my attention was a tangential concern, that of account sharing. I made note of it over there, but I wanted to echo it here.
Perhaps it’s just one piece of the “anarchy” puzzle that is Tesh, but I’ve never liked that account sharing is technically against the Terms of Service in most of these MMO things. It’s my account, I should be able to decide who to trust with that data. As it happens, I’ve done so, letting my wife or siblings play with my accounts in games. Yes, I did so knowing full well that the company could pull a jerk move and delete my account for it, but I did so because I trusted my family with my data.
And ultimately, that should be my choice. I’m therefore a conscientious objector to that part of the standard MMO TOS (as well as other parts, for that matter). Then again, I’m also the sort that believes strongly in individual responsibility rather than state mandates. I don’t talk politics much here (on purpose), but I can’t help but see parallels between the State of the MMO Provider and the State of the Union (and politics vs. human nature in general).
Ultimately, society works not because government (or the Provider) is perfect, but because We the People work together (even though we aren’t perfect). Top down design in games (“thou shalt group”) and top down design in government (Chrysler much? Bailout nation? Moral hazard?) are both dangerous. In both cases, if someone gets ripped off, it’s their own fault, and it’s not Big Brother’s job to swoop in and right the wrongs, whether it’s with a bailout or a banhammer.
This is also why I see no problem whatsoever if an MMO player wants to sell their account (or if someone wants to buy one). I’ve always thought restrictions against that were ridiculous as well. It’s technically against the rules for most MMOs, but as I consider those rules ill-advised in the first place, I have no problem breaking them. Maybe that makes me a terrible scofflaw, but then… I’ve always thought that pointing out and objecting to bad laws and dumb rules is a moral obligation, and a cherished right in the country I live in.
Funny how quick we are to sign (or vote) that away sometimes.