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Website Offers Moola For Gamers

Jason Lee Miller
Staff Writer
Published: 2006-05-15

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Let me get this straight, I asked an imaginary spokesperson, you give me a penny to start, I play your game, and if I win it's doubled. If I win 30 times straight, you give me over $10 million. Yes, said iSpokesperson, but if you lose along the way, you lose everything.

Moola.com, still in private beta, promises an ad-supported experience that draws on our love of Las Vegas, game shows, and video games, without any investment (or ante) on the users' part.

Visitors are pitted against one another, each given a penny in their account. They play a Flash game, winner take all. Okay, so now the winner has 2 cents. But as the Moola-meter (it may have an official name) shows, 10 straight wins earns the player $10.24; 20 wins, $10, 485.76; and 30 wins, $10,737, 418.24. Who knew math could be this fun?

The cowardly types (or, if you insist, the smart ones) can cash out at any time, say, if they're not willing to risk the $5 million they've already won at 29 wins and have a check for their winnings sent to them.

The games are sponsored by advertisers, a model that not only provides the cash to the players, but also provides the short video advertisements before each game. They also have a tiered referral system that allow players to get bonuses on their winnings.

If it sounds like a scam, well, the jury hasn't chimed in yet. But Michael Arrington says it's legit, with a few reservations.

" I tried playing a few games and it seemed legitimate. I can't tell if I was playing against a computer or not, though. Moola always found a rival to play against me within seconds, and the games are very simple and could be easily played by a computer. Given how easy it would be for Moola to beat successful players by automated means, I would assume that the risk of fraud is significant."

However, Mr. Moola, CEO Jason White, blogs that any type of automated defeat system would ensure the defeat of the website as well:

"The more money won by you, the more credibility we gain in your eyes. As larger sums are won, players like you talk about Moola more frequently, and new players sign up in larger numbers. This, in turn, attracts more advertisers, whose dollars can be distributed as prize money, in turn attracting more players and so on… In other words, we believe doing something intentionally to interfere in the player's ability to win more money, is essentially in direct conflict with the natural harmony of the business model, and would serve to undermine the long term success of the business, rather than help it in any meaningful way"

Those interested in testing out the private beta can sign up at the website for an invitation. If you get addicted, there will probably be an Online Gamers' Anonymous formed any moment. Oh wait, there is one.


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About the Author:
Jason L. Miller is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

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