Heads up to people.

Posted by Member Juilan1900 on 3/18/13 10:40 PM #1
Posts: 19

Heads up to people currently partaking in in RMAH to PayPal.

http://www.fincen.gov/statutes_regs/guidance/pdf/FIN-2013-G001.pdf
Posted by Member Bort on 3/19/13 04:28 AM #2
Posts: 551

So for people like me that can't read legalise and fell asleep halfway through page 2... in short, what's the implications?
Posted by Member Khan on 3/19/13 08:43 AM #3
Posts: 1195

Nothing really for users. Companies like Blizzard, Amazon, Facebook, and Bitcoin may have to revamp their compliance policies to meet the MSB standards.
Posted by Member ecocd on 3/19/13 09:06 AM #4
Posts: 1059

It looks like it's guidance on how the Bank Secrecy Act will apply to virtual currencies. From Wikipedia:

Specifically, the act requires financial institutions to keep records of cash purchases of negotiable instruments, and file reports of cash purchases of these negotiable instruments of more than $10,000 (daily aggregate amount

So someone that deals with 154 trillion Gold in transactions per day will need to be tracked by Blizzard.

As far as I can tell, this is targeted at Bitcoins. With no oversight of Bitcoins, there's a chance criminal elements could launder dirty money into clean money through Bitcoin exchanges. FinCEN wouldn't bother putting this out if it wasn't already happening. Anyone running such centralized exchanges will now have to track and report any individual that deals in over $10k / day of Bitcoins.

If Blizzard really has to track and store Gold transactions on a daily basis for all of their players, there's a chance they'll drop RMAH support for direct Gold/Currency purchases. It should no longer be considered a virtual currency in that case. It's questionable whether they'll make money on Gold sales (or in the future, Platinum sales) to justify the cost of compliance with the new regulations.
Posted by Member Juilan1900 on 3/19/13 10:49 AM #5
Posts: 19

I agree it was meant to get a closer look at Bitcoins.

"By contrast, a person that creates units of convertible virtual currency and sells those units to another person for real currency or its equivalent is engaged in transmission to another location and is a money transmitter"

This quote from it is was caught me of guard about the whole notice. It all depends what they consider a "convertible" virtual currency.
Posted by Member ecocd on 3/19/13 12:14 PM #6
Posts: 1059

I saw that, too and that's why I think the Blizzard-run RMAH would qualify Diablo 3 Gold as a convertible currency, but removing that functionality means it's only selling virtual goods and not virtual currency. If Blizzard created some kind of shell company to run the AH, it might change things. Hooray legal loopholes!
Posted by Member Khan on 3/19/13 01:46 PM #7
Posts: 1195

I actually work in BSA/AML for a West coast bank and everyone is optimistic because it means more job security and possible career penetration into companies like Amazon, Facebook, and Blizzard.

The US government always wants to make sure it gets its money...
Posted by Member Juilan1900 on 3/19/13 04:34 PM #8
Posts: 19

My deal is that if they consider it convertible then selling something on the Gold AH would be tantamount to income and thus taxable.
Posted by Member Bort on 3/20/13 05:24 AM #9
Posts: 551

Posted by Juilan1900 at 03/19/2013 04:34 PM

My deal is that if they consider it convertible then selling something on the Gold AH would be tantamount to income and thus taxable.


That's pretty much the same chain of thought I had.

Cept, not only selling on the Gold AH. Looting is also income. Better drop all pickup radius items, and avoid those gold heaps or the tax man will be at your neck.

Posted by Member JJK59 on 3/20/13 06:22 AM #10
Posts: 68

I can see it now! On your 1040, it will say "Diablo 3 Gold Looter" as your job description... I was already asked how much gold I charge to do a tax return. :)
Posted by Member EnzyOne on 3/20/13 06:28 AM #11
Posts: 107

@JJK59 I can see it now... this year's unemployment rate will be the lowest it's ever been!
Posted by Member ecocd on 3/20/13 07:01 AM #12
Posts: 1059

The U.S. government, at least, doesn't care about online auctions except when they go over a certain amount annually or per month, I believe. It's come up for eBay and there's a definite threshold at which point eBay has to notify the IRS and I think it's around $10k. So again, if you go over 157 trillion Gold in sales, you'll have to claim it on your taxes. If you manage that, however, you have much, much larger problems than an additional tax bill.

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6 users posted in this thread: Bort, ecocd, EnzyOne, JJK59, Juilan1900, Khan

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