Thoughts From The Cyberverse: Are 3rd Party Exchanges dead now?

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According to a recent post on the Second Life news reel, Linden Lab will try to allow some L$ retailers to still exchange L$ for other currencies. This would be possible through their new pilot program “Authorized Resellers”.

Some rules and regulation will apply, and it will be stricter than before. One of these rules caught my eye as I was reading it:

These sites are authorized by Linden Lab to purchase L$ on the LindeX and then resell those L$ using a variety of international currencies and payment methods. To be clear: per the Terms of Service, these resellers will not be allowed to purchase L$ outside of the LindeX (i.e. they will not be able to buy L$ back from users and cash people out).

Unlike the previous system, the exchanges won’t be able to offer cheaper L$ this time, as they have to buy all their “stock” directly from Linden Lab and the customers will also loose their quick cash services, as the exchanges are no longer able to cash people out within a day.

As it is now, these resellers couldn’t possibly sell L$ cheaper than LindeX, meaning Linden Lab regains control of the value of L$. One of the very few reasons you would have to use such service would be if you have no ability to transfer money across the borders from a country not using any of the more than 5 currencies Linden Lab currently accepts, however any person who can get a credit card can already transfer money in this way without having to pay any extra fees.

An official list of resellers participating in this pilot program have been released, and I see some familiar names on there. Among others, VirWoX and AnsheX have resettled to resellers rather than exchanges.

Where this pilot will lead is up to the future, but what are your thoughts on this? I’m looking forward to your comments on this subject.

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