The collapse of the economy in 2008 might have reached the far corners of Earth, but evidently not to Planet Calypso, the make-believe asteroid containing make-believe real estate in the multiplayer online game Entropia Universe, where resort entrepreneur Jon Jacobs recently cashed out his properties for $635,000 — in real (not make-believe) U.S. dollars.
Since Jacobs’ original 2005 investment was $100,000 (a record at that time), he thus has earned an average 35 percent annual return.
As players landed on Jacobs’ properties, to hunt or to mine precious substances, they paid fees, and Jacobs’ buyers are obviously optimistic they can maintain that income stream.
A recent study by the marketing firm In-Stat estimated that online players would spend $7 billion in 2010 on make-believe property and goods.
The U.K.’s coalition government announced the imminent consolidation of anti-discrimination laws known as the Equality Act — despite critics’ warnings that it could stunt economic growth by tying up the work place in a morass of lawsuits in which workers could sue for almost any perceived offense.
Under the new concept of “third-party harassment,” for example, an employee who merely overhears another person — even a customer of his employer — say something he finds offensive could sue the employer.
Critics also complained that the law adds to the traditional group of specially protected, oppressed people the minorities vegans, teetotalers, Gypsies and “travelers” (grifters).
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