Liu Dali is a Chinese citizen who bravely sought to petition the government over rampant corruption. The Chinese government responded by throwing him into a corrupt prison system where he did manual labor for 12 hours of day and then was forced to play online games to build up credits that were sold by prison officials for cash. If he failed to make his quota of game credits, he was beaten. This may seem like a Monty Python skit but it is deadly serious.
Liu Dali, 54, was a prisoner at the Jixi labour camp where he would carve chopsticks and toothpicks out of planks of wood to be exported to South Korea and Japan.
The gaming business is called “gold farming”, where you build up credits online through the monotonous repetition of basic tasks in online games such as World of Warcraft. “It is estimated that 80% of all gold farmers are in China” and, according to critics, many are prisoners working under harsh conditions.
The nice touch is that while doing manual labor during the day and gaming at night (with the accompanying beatings) he was required to memorize Communist literature to better appreciate the worker’s paradise that is China. I assume it includes slogans from Mao’s Little Red Book like “the good worker does not stop a quest chain until bonuses are earned” or “only bourgeoisie allow Night Elves to become wisps without earning credits for the People’s Republic.”