I think this is a wild idea (even if it is something I wouldn't actually put my money in). We got tipped about a new site called "You Play or We Pay" and from the looks of it, these guys are offering none other than downtime insurance. That is: you pay a fee to them regularly, and then they "compensate" you for any downtime that your server has. They call it "third-party compensation," but that sounds like insurance to me.

At any rate, we wouldn't quite recommend jumping in headfirst yet -- they haven't, as far as we can see, revealed any prices, and while you can register your characters, you can't actually get any sort of payout quite yet, as they say they're still working on the system. For all we know the site could be an elaborate scam at this point. But it is an intriguing idea, and if they're really ready to put their money where their FAQ is, these guys may have an actual business plan that depends on Blizzard keeping the servers up. Just like all insurance companies, they must have figured out that the servers stay up more often than not, and that there was money to be made there.

It's quite an interesting plan, and we'll keep an eye on it to see if they ever announce a fee or explain themselves better. The math doesn't quite seem right here, but if somehow their fees are low enough and the payouts are high enough, it's possible that you really could be compensated for downtime by a completely separate company other than Blizzard. Very interesting.

Update: The company has contacted WoW Insider, and we've requested an interview. Stay tuned.

This article was originally published on WoW Insider.

WoW Europe's 2009 Valentine's Day contest announced