Advertisement in an MMORPG is a pretty common thing nowadays, whether it’s the old “WTB GF” spam in RuneScape or people offering power-leveling and gold in other titles. World of Warcraft has a lengthy history of advertisements across a myriad of different subjects.
Blizzard has also seen fit to ban real-money transactions, stopping players from trading gold or other services and currencies in exchange for real-world money. This includes things such as carries through dungeons, power leveling, and anything similar.
That isn’t to say players can’t offer these things to each other, of course. Players are free to discuss trades for carries and the like in the appropriate channels, assuming real-world currency isn’t a part of the factor.
One place that players are not allowed to advertise, however, is in the Group Finder tool, an in-game feature that does exactly as it sounds. Players will list placings for dungeons, raids, battlegrounds, island expeditions, role-playing groups, and any other thing one may want a group for.
The problem that arises here is when players fill the Group Finder tool with a number of different spam ads. Many will use it to advertise for their services carrying players through dungeons, power leveling, or carries through Arena conquest caps and the like.
— Icy Veins (@icyveins) July 28, 2020
On the surface, this may seem like a non-problem – what’s the issue with advertising to carry dungeons in the Dungeon Finder? The issue is that the players searching for groups that are actually running the content instead of selling it then struggle to find groups.
As a result, Blizzard has seen fit to make advertising through the tool a punishable offense – though it doesn’t carry too severe of a penalty. Players that use the tool to advertise will be eligible to be given a one-day suspension.
While they made no direct announcement of this, players have begun circulating their notifications emails of being banned. One such post was placed on the Icy Veins forums, which we’ve linked in the tweet embedded above.
“We don’t take this decision lightly. Our team issued this action after a careful review of relevant evidence,” the email says in regards to the suspension. “Our support staff will not overturn this penalty and may not respond to appeals.”
Really, a one-day suspension is barely a headache at most, though it could be quite inconvenient for those affected if it comes on the day before the weekly reset or some other such day. However, it’s better for advertisers to be annoyed by a suspension than players to be annoyed digging through ads to find a viable group.