UK Digital Minister Doesn't Classify Loot Boxes As Gambling But Is "Looking At Evidence"
UK Minister for Digital and the Creative Industries Margot James appeared before the Commons committee of the UK Parliament earlier this week to offer her opinion on the status of loot boxes in video games. Most notably, she "contest[s] the assumption that loot boxes are gambling," while acknowledging that action may still need to be taken if "evidence does emerge that loot boxes can be a gateway to problem gambling."
According to GamesIndustry.biz, the minister acknowledged the legal status of loot boxes in countries like Belgium and The Netherlands, saying that "our gambling laws are different" and that more research was needed to examine the possibility of a link between loot boxes and addictive gambling behavior.
James did not absolve game companies of the role they play in potential loot box addiction, saying that they "have a duty of care even with or without regulation" and that it's a matter they "should take seriously and there are a variety of ways they could introduce support for their userbase."
I won't quote every word James spoke at the hearing -- or at least the ones that were quoted by GI.biz. You can read the article in full to get all of that. I did like her approach, however, of wanting to look for more information and research before regulation is enacted by the government, while also not letting game companies completely off the hook. In essence, while she doesn't think loot boxes are gambling -- yet -- she still thinks they could be something that requires regulation down the road, which is a take I've had for a couple of years now.
About the Author
Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.
You May Enjoy
There's A New Sheriff In Town As Blizzard Announces New Game Director For Diablo IV
Longtime Blizzard staffer Joe Shely steps up from position as “overall caretaker” of combat design.By QuintLyn Bowers - 1 week ago
Halloween Arrives In PC And Console Versions World Of Warships
Take on Rasputin and lead your fleet through the darkness.By Jason Winter - 1 week ago
Warface Origins Season Gives Classic Maps A Bit Of A Makeover
The new season kicks off today.By QuintLyn Bowers - 4 days ago
Wonder What's Planned For Bless Unleashed PC Now That Console Is Out? Here's A Roadmap That Includes The Assassin Class
The roadmap starts later this month and runs through the first half of next year.By QuintLyn Bowers - 5 days ago
Take A Friend Or Four On Your Adventures In Gielinor With Old School RuneScape's Group Ironman Mode
Requested by 80% of players -- and there's even a hardcore version.By Jason Winter - 1 week ago
The Cycle To Refund All 2021 Purchases As Original Version Of Game Shuts Down
And you'll get to keep all the stuff you bought!By Jason Winter - 3 days ago