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Six US iGaming Giants Unveil 12-Point Responsible Gambling StandardsBy Jeff Osienya Sep 29, 2022 IndustryThe fight for safer gaming in USA’s rapidly expanding gambling sector is getting stronger. A sixsome of iGaming trailblazers has announced a 12-point pledge to steer the industry in the right direction by focusing on player protection.
Six of the largest iGaming operators across the US have collaborated to spearhead the first industry-driven responsible gaming standards to push for safer gambling. The said group consists of BetMGM, Bally’s, DraftKings, FanDuel, MGM Resorts International, and Entain. It’s worth noting that BetMGM was formed from a 50-50 partnership between Entain and MGM Resorts International.
Given that online gambling is flourishing in the US as many states continue to legalize the activity, there is a need to ensure that players play in safe environments. Additionally, operators must also exercise caution to ensure that vulnerable players are protected from gambling harm. Therefore, the six online gaming operators have come up with a 12-point pledge showcasing their commitment to the principles of responsible iGaming and have been recommended as the industry’s benchmark.
The four core attributes from which the 12 principles are derived are as follows:
- Online gaming operators will solely participate in legal markets that offer consumers protection.
- iGaming operators will strive to maintain a responsible gaming culture across their respective businesses.
- Ensuring that iGaming is a fun activity enjoyed as a form of entertainment.
- Although many gamblers play online games responsibly, some people require additional tools and support.
The New 12-Point Responsible Gaming Guidelines
Incidentally, the safer gambling move by the half-a-dozen iGaming operators coincides with the American Gaming Association’s (AGA) inaugural Responsible Gaming Education Month (RGEM), which kicked off on September 1. The 12 principles outlined by the online gaming sixsome are a pledge that operators will:
- Take measures to stop underage by excluding them from enjoying any form of gaming from their products.
- Help their consumers make more informed gaming decisions by providing easy-to-read information on how to play. Additionally, they will provide responsible gaming tools, including detailed information on how to access and use the tools and the toll-free helpline for bettors seeking support.
- Support the adoption and implementation of a uniform nationwide responsible gaming toll-free helpline.
- Consent to the applicable standards of socially responsible advertising. For instance, they vow to abide by all state and federal laws and standards and avoid using minors to advertise. Instead, they will use actors and company reps whose appearance depicts someone above the legal gambling age.
- Provide their consumers with tools to assist in responsible gaming. The tools include but are not limited to customers wagering histories, financial and other account caps, and self-exclusion tools.
- Accept all self-exclusion rules and regulations and provide tools to consumers who wish to self-exclude.
- Encourage bettors to create a budget and stick to it; they should not view gaming as a source of income.
- Urge players to set financial and time limits when gaming and avoid chasing losses.
- Work with their customers, academic experts and researchers, policymakers, advocacy groups, and problem gaming treatment organizations to address problem gaming.
- Offer to fund evidence-based gambling problems and research on responsible gaming.
- Provide their employees with the relevant responsible gaming training once hired and frequently thereafter to instill the responsible gaming culture in their businesses.
- Evaluate and continuously monitor their respective responsible gaming programs and initiatives.
Top Brass Among the Six iGaming Juggernauts Chime In
Following the announcement of the 12-point safer gaming pledge, Chief Legal Officer at BetMGM, Joshua Jessen, voiced his support of the guidelines saying:Quote
“Responsible gaming is at the forefront of everything we do at BetMGM. While we operate in a highly competitive industry, we are proud to stand together with our colleagues to adopt these important principles. Creating a consistent standard of responsible gaming measures across the board greatly strengthens our collective commitment to our customers, employees, and the communities where we operate. We look forward to building on our work into the future.”
Meanwhile, Adam Warrington, the VP of Responsible Gaming at FanDuel, assured the industry that the company is committed to forming alliances and partnering with all industry operators under the 12-point pledge. Additionally, he emphasized that FanDuel now has an opportunity to lead by example by encouraging bettors to enjoy their gaming products responsibly.
Additionally, according to Robeson Reeves, President of Interactive, Bally’s Corporation, the company is happy to work with all other participating operators. Likewise, they are committed to enhancing responsible gaming to prevent underage gaming and provide guidance through education.
As for Martin Lycka, Entain’s Senior VP for American Regulatory Affairs and Responsible Gambling, she applauded the online gaming sixer for identifying the need for responsible online gaming in the nation. He said in part:Quote
“These principles mark an important milestone, and I am delighted other leading operators have joined us in this commitment to responsible gaming in the rapidly growing US markets, as responsibility sits at the heart of our business. It’s truly a first for this market and a significant step for addressing problem gaming on a consistent basis. We have the research, the data, the partners---all the tools to establish an effective nationwide code of responsible gaming principles. And we hope our industry and state regulators will join us in advancing these principles. Our patrons deserve it.”
The Senior VP and Chief Compliance Officer at MGM Resorts, Stephen Martino, also highlighted that responsible gaming is a core value at the company. On top of reiterating the importance of responsible gaming to reflect on everything the company does, he commended the operators for putting players’ best interests at the forefront.
Finally, Chrissy Thurmond, Senior Director of Responsible Gaming, DraftKings, also voiced her enthusiasm for the new safer gambling measures by saying:Quote
“Essential to promoting safer play is a framework for operators to guide them in responsible gaming. DraftKings is pleased to be a part of this landmark effort that has culminated in the adoption of 12 responsible gaming principles across the participating operators – and that will benefit consumers around the United States.”
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