Gamasutra - What gamers think about Microtransactions
Gamasutra's Daniel Kromand tackles the controversial topic of the retail sale of additional small packets of post-release game content known as microtransactions in an op-ed featuring interviews with gamers. His point of view is from the provider end, seeing microtransactions as a way to circumvent piracy and make pc game sales more profitable.
From the introduction to the piece:
But first, a brief overview of microtransactions: The PC gaming market is often depicted as either entirely dead, or at least in a dire crisis. A major cause for this crisis is of course not that the PC is finished as a gaming platform, but rather that a high level of piracy is undermining the traditional retail model.
Microtransactions can help to revert this trend and revitalize this market segment, but its implementation is still relatively new -- at least in Western game development. While microtransactions have been tried in single-player games (Oblivion's horse-barding maybe being the most famous), they are most widely used in online, multiplayer games, and for sake of simplicity I will only look at the latter.