Gold Farmers with low salary


Gold farmers Trailer from Ge Jin on Vimeo.

In Managing Media Work, Aphra Kerr talked about the labors in game industry. He said that game players also contribute to the culture of gamework. Based on the feedback data, game designers make refinements for the game and then gain more money through it.

As the “workers for game”, did players get enough salary?

In a recent reports, a young man disappeared for 5 years after he got the job to be a “Gold Farmer”—players who make livings by playing online games in China.” The in-game goods they produce are sold for real dollar to American gamers who need a short cut to success in the games.” Those young man worked for more than 12 hours a day to get the virtual money and equipments. It even becomes a real career in China. Some high-level game accounts could get a price for several hundred dollars—which is the average month salary in China. Most of the” Gold Farmers” are  less than 18 years old.  The recruiting requirements for Gold Farmer are as followers: under 25 years old; have experience in online game, etc. Some even need to have formal interviews to get the job. On average, each mission that companies give to Gold Farmers need at least 2 hours to finish, and the salary is 4 yuan per hour, which equals to 0.63 dollars per hour.

In the documentary of Chinese Gold Farmer, it describes how it feels to interact with foreign gamers who they would never have the chance to meet if not for this globalized virtual world.

Who should be blamed? The American gamers? The Chinese gamers? The Games? Or the world?

–Hongyuan Jiang

Kerr, A. (2011). The Culture of Gamework. In M. Deuze (Ed.), Managing Media Work(pp. 225-236). Thousand Oaks, California, United States of America: SAGE Publications Inc.


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