Minecraft Maker Thinks Wealth is Weird

Minecraft Maker Thinks Wealth is Weird

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Markus 'Notch' Persson wants to use his cash to make the world a better place.

"It's weird as fuck," says Notch. "I grew up in a relatively poor family, but once I got a decent job, I never really had to worry about money." These days the man who made Minecraft has rather more cash than he'd ever anticipated - $101 million in sales in 2012 alone - and he doesn't know what to spend it on. After all, once you have a decent gaming rig, and maybe a new car - Notch doesn't even know how to drive yet - what else is there?

Notch, who finds it extremely strange to have his earnings talked about in the news, wants to use some of his cash to make the world a better place. "For me," he says, "this includes charities that help children, and charities that help promote freedoms I think are vital in the coming dozens of years, such as the EFF."

Notch went on to say that selling Mojang stock, even giving it to staff as a bonus, isn't where he intends to take the company. "We focus on trying to be as fair and permissive with our employees as we can," Notch says. "If people agree to work for us, we'll pay them, but we won't claim to own them. People can make games in their spare time, they can somewhat flexibly move between projects as they wish."

The comments came as part of a not-quite-AMA Notch found himself hosting on Reddit. It wasn't what he thought he'd be doing; he was actually trying to play Ni no Kuni, but questions about his net worth kept getting in the way.

"On one hand I don't mind having loads of money at all," Notch concluded. "On the other, it's a bit strange that I can create something once and keep getting paid over and over and over for it. If you build a car, you can only sell it once. If you paint a fence, you only get paid for it once. If you create a piece of software that's essentially free to reproduce, you can keep getting paid over and over perpetually."

Hence the $101 million, and the oil paintings, and whatever else it is Mojang will get up to next. That said, there are worse fates than not knowing what to do with all that cash; and, on the whole, it couldn't happen to a better fella.

Source: Reddit

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So one can simply say that wealth provides an illusion sense of power?

if its such a burden i am willing to relieve you from it.

i am such a saint..

Is there maybe a translation problem, or has been misquoted? If he finds it weird how game sales work then hes a bit of a simple lad isn't he?

Fasckira:
Is there maybe a translation problem, or has been misquoted? If he finds it weird how game sales work then hes a bit of a simple lad isn't he?

How many jobs are there where you do one thing, one time, & get paid for years for it?

Wow! So people can have have and NOT hate poor people and the government?

Zombie_Moogle:

Fasckira:
Is there maybe a translation problem, or has been misquoted? If he finds it weird how game sales work then hes a bit of a simple lad isn't he?

How many jobs are there where you do one thing, one time, & get paid for years for it?

One, which included the development of a web app that went on to be used continually by numerous organisations. However admittedly I personally didn't get paid for it, the company did but they continually get people buying new installs _and_ they get the monthly administration costs for it. Its really not that hard a concept to wrap your head around - software can be copied so easily, its nothing like building a car or painting a fence.

I know a way to make the world a better place... help fund Psychonauts 2!

Fasckira:

Zombie_Moogle:

Fasckira:
Is there maybe a translation problem, or has been misquoted? If he finds it weird how game sales work then hes a bit of a simple lad isn't he?

How many jobs are there where you do one thing, one time, & get paid for years for it?

One, which included the development of a web app that went on to be used continually by numerous organisations. However admittedly I personally didn't get paid for it, the company did but they continually get people buying new installs _and_ they get the monthly administration costs for it. Its really not that hard a concept to wrap your head around - software can be copied so easily, its nothing like building a car or painting a fence.

I think you're over analyzing what he's saying, or under analyzing maybe. Taking it to literal.
Of course he "gets" the business model, but it's an emotional thing. We're brought up under the pretense that the way to make money is to work for it, and you work every day and gets a paycheck at the end of the month. And then you do it again for the next month until you retire. Even when we fantasize about being rich we usually dream of winning the lottery and gaining that clump sum of money. What he thinks is weird is gaining money for work he's already done, and already gotten filthy rich from. He still gets enough money to last a lifetime every year for a game he no longer works on and I get why that feels weird. It's not about not understanding how it works, it's about how it feels like you're not doing anything to deserve your money.
Also, this fits very well into a concept we have in Sweden called "Jantelagen". It's all about our inability to enjoy when things go well rr feeling deserving of money and happiness. Basically the Swedish stereotypical mindset is the exact opposite of the American stereotypical. mindset

I hope he was wise enough to get a decent broker. I have a funny feeling that his lack of interest in financial management is going to lead him to an easy come easy go sort of scenario.

captcha: Keep More Money.

right you are, sentient precognitive turbotax captcha.
Right you are.

Money is wasted on the rich.
The poor make better rich people than the rich.

well I dont know if youre really willing to spend it you fcould always come here to the US and make jobs, or you know, make the EU figure itself out before it all collapses (though I dont know if it can be saved at this point). Im sure there's hungry children in africa, amybe even where he lives if he doesnt want to deal with currency exchange.

R.Nevermore:
Money is wasted on the rich.
The poor make better rich people than the rich.

This is actually rather untrue. Look at the lotto winners. They usually destroy their financial lives. Look at the unbelievably unintelligent actors/singers who make it big. Lindsey Lohan, Brittney Spears, that other dumb blond in Van wilder, or football players who shoot themselves in clubs on accident. They all have huge drug/legal problems.

emeraldrafael:
well I dont know if youre really willing to spend it you fcould always come here to the US and make jobs, or you know, make the EU figure itself out before it all collapses (though I dont know if it can be saved at this point). Im sure there's hungry children in africa, amybe even where he lives if he doesnt want to deal with currency exchange.

What the hell are you babbling about?

1. Why would he move to the USA when he's happy where he is?

2. How did you get the idea that the strongest economy in the world is collapsing, and not just going through some problems?

3. How do you think a single millionaire game designer would be able to save the EU from this hypothetical collapse?

4. He just said that he's giving money to charities to help children.

Fasckira:
One, which included the development of a web app that went on to be used continually by numerous organisations. However admittedly I personally didn't get paid for it, the company did but they continually get people buying new installs _and_ they get the monthly administration costs for it. Its really not that hard a concept to wrap your head around - software can be copied so easily, its nothing like building a car or painting a fence.

He's a member of the Swedish Pirate Party as far as I know and he's talking about the imbalance between the monopolies that have been built using "Intellectual Property" and "Patent" laws (this is why he wants to give money to the EFF and in fact he already did: https://www.eff.org/press/releases/eff-patent-project-gets-half-million-dollar-boost-mark-cuban-and-notch )

If you think about it it's not really fair that some people can create something (like a piece of software, a movie, a song or write a book) and have that one work finance them up to and even beyond their death with their heirs.
An architect that designs a house, the construction worker that builds it or the craftsman that makes the chairs and tables that are going to be used inside the house only get money for their work once, and there's no state-given monopoly on them being allowed to collect "licensing fees" every time someone sits down at their table or on their chairs to eat, every time someone enters the house or every time someone is even allowed to look at their house respectively.

But this is kind of the business model that most of the entertainment industries have worked out for themselves, and he's just indicating that imbalance.

Didn't this guy pledge to fund a sequel to Psychonauts before saying "Whoa, dude, that's a bit more money than I expected" and renege on that pledge?

Dexter111:
If you think about it it's not really fair that some people can create something (like a piece of software, a movie, a song or write a book) and have that one work finance them up to and even beyond their death with their heirs.

On the other hand, there's also no way for a single copy of a movie, game, or even song to be sold at anywhere near enough to reimburse the cost of development. Nor does it make any sense for the first customer to pay that amount and everyone else to get it for free. So it's not as simple as "Media should follow the same business model as physical products" either.

Hurray! I'm not the only adult who's never learned how to drive. Though his reason could be that he lives IN town where properties have no garages whereas am a panicking ball of stress behind the wheel.

R.Nevermore:
Money is wasted on the rich.
The poor make better rich people than the rich.

Statistics show that poor people who win the lottery tend to piss their money away fast & end up even poorer than before, if their relatives don't try to kill them first.

Irridium:
I know a way to make the world a better place... help fund Psychonauts 2!

I hated the first one because of it's restrictiveness, imbalance between too much & too little going on, & uneven difficulty curve (I also had an anxiety attack on one level) but I'd still try the sequel.

likalaruku:
Hurray! I'm not the only adult who's never learned how to drive.

No, you're not. I also don't have a drivers license. First of all, I live in Germany, where everything is connected with public transportation. Second, cars are like a polluting, noisy plague that has taken over our cities and turned beautiful countrysides into snakes of gray, stinking asphalt. Third, I disdained the "cool fellas" that made their license just in time for the 18th birthday and came to school in their shiny car the next day, so it was a conscious, rebellious decision to be counter cool.

Yet if I had as much money as Notch, I'd probably make my drivers license so I could drive a Lamborghini.

Just can't resist the Lamborghinis.

Fasckira:
Is there maybe a translation problem, or has been misquoted? If he finds it weird how game sales work then hes a bit of a simple lad isn't he?

I doubt there's a translation problem, but I've no problems believing that he's a very simple guy. I mean, look at his smash hit game, it's got graphics anyone could replicate.
Admittedly, I'd be incredibly fucking tripped out if I gained vast riches as well, and I imagine that's a common reaction.

I don't entirely agree with all of Notch's views, but it's nice to see that, at the very least, he's apparently very philanthropic with his money.

he gave to child's play via DesertBus I think. That's what I want. to be rich enough to give most of it away.

I need to stop taking things out of context and read the whole article before I start thinking. I got to "wants to use some of his cash to make the world a better place. "For me," he says" and thought about what a jerk he was. Boy, did I feel silly a second later.

Fasckira:
Is there maybe a translation problem, or has been misquoted? If he finds it weird how game sales work then hes a bit of a simple lad isn't he?

i think its not that he does not understand, but that he thinks its rather unfair idea, you create something once and esentialy can sell it over and over again for 95+ years. This is why copyright should nto be extended but lowered. we should make copyright last 25 or less years for many things. you should not get paid agian and agian for something you made 50 years ago.

Karloff:
...and, on the whole, it couldn't happen to a better fella.

I don't agree, he has made some fairly serious PR blunders and his handling of content creators for his game at the various minecons leaves much to be desired. I don't think he's a bad person, and I don't actively dislike him, but I often don't like the way he handles his fans.

The Plunk:

emeraldrafael:
well I dont know if youre really willing to spend it you fcould always come here to the US and make jobs, or you know, make the EU figure itself out before it all collapses (though I dont know if it can be saved at this point). Im sure there's hungry children in africa, amybe even where he lives if he doesnt want to deal with currency exchange.

...

2. How did you get the idea that the strongest economy in the world is collapsing, and not just going through some problems?

...

the strongest economy, no, The US, China, Japan, and India all want words with you before one of your countries rears its heads. You dont count a full union as a single economy, otherwise youre going to have to count the trade the US and China do with each other as an economy. Not to mention any of the other groups like NAFTA, APEC, and AFTA. The total EU GDP is only about 2.5 Trillion more than the US. ALONE. Add Canada and mexico do that and the three of them together (NAFTA) are greater. In fact, APEC (which does not include the EU), accounts for over half the worlds total GDP. So tell me, where in any of that leads you to believe the EU is the biggest Economic Power?
And how do I know? well, besides, the UK having been thinking of leaving for sometime now and is actually going put up to vote in 2017, and last year it was Greece (generally things you dont do when youre only going through a "rough time"), that 5 countries (spain Cyprus, ireland, Greece, and Portugal) now have pushed for bail outs and the raising stress it putting the strongest of the nations in it (France and Germany) at odds, and that several countries are in recession or at risk of, and arent positively projected to grow in recent years, Gee, I can only wonder.

 

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