Virtual Worlds Raise Real Funds

On Friday we reported on a few businesses that made it easy for their customers to donate to the American Red Cross. Sony Online Entertainment found its own way to get players of EverQuest II to give; they can type in “/donate” in the game to initiate a donation.

The /donate text will launch a new browser window where players can easily enter their information. A credit card number still needs to be supplied. SOE has the ability to ping the credit card for activities like this, making transactions instantaneous, but didn’t implement it this particular time because it would have caused a delay.

The /service concept was originally launched with a deal from Pizza Hut, where players could type “/pizza” to order food delivery. Reportedly successful, SOE plans to offer more programs and a company source said SOE is close to signing a deal very soon; one that will “make sense.”

In addition to raising funds for the areas affected by the hurricane, SOE will suspend billing until players are able to get back online and play again. It will also preserve any items or structures from harm or decay until players are able to get back online.

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