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House of Lords Calls for Loot Boxes to Be Regulated Under Gambling Laws [Updated]

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Update

UK games industry trade association UKIE has offered a response to the House of Lords' decision to classify loot boxes as a form of gambling, stating that it has been working hard to address the concerns of the Lords Select Committee concerning loot boxes. This includes launching the 'Get Smart About P.L.A.Y.' Campaign back in January, as well as adding the 'paid random item' descriptor to PEGI age ratings.

"The majority of people in the UK play video games in one form or another, so we take these concerns seriously," said UKIE CEO, Dr. Jo Twist OBE. "We’ve worked hard to increase the use of family controls on consoles which can turn off or limit spending and we will be working closely with the DCMS during its review of the Gambling Act later this year."

Original Story

The UK's House of Lords has called for loot boxes to be regulated under the country's gambling laws and classified as "games of chance", under the 2005 Gambling Act. "If a product looks like gambling and feels like gambling, it should be regulated as gambling," the House of Lords report states, adding that the classification should happen as soon as possible.

"The government must act immediately to bring loot boxes within the remit of gambling legislation and regulation," a statement accompanying the report adds. For several years now, loot boxes in certain games have been the source of controversy, especially those available to purchase using real money that offer a random chance at earning an item or reward.

The committee's chairman Lord Grade said that the UK is behind on legislation for loot boxes, as other countries (such as Belgium) have taken measures to regulate them, having seen "the dangers" and the potential they have to teach "kids to gamble". He added that the Gambling Act was "way behind what was actually happening in the market" and that the report's recommendations "could be enacted today".

The Lords report also has a stern warning that the issue of loot boxes in games "requires more urgent attention", so you can expect items like FIFA Ultimate Team Packs and other similar loot box mechanics that require real money, to soon fall under the UK's Gambling Act.

[Via BBC]




 
 

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Developer:
Microsoft
Publisher:
Microsoft

Release:

US November 22, 2013
Europe November 22, 2013
Japan September 04, 2014

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