The government in Sweden is already taking quantum leaps, introducing new regulations, to contain problem gambling; and what could possibly be defined as a preemptive step against any perpetuation of gambling addiction amongst Swedes from Loot Boxes, the country’s consumer protection authority has launched an official investigation about loot boxes.
The authority said it would be releasing the findings by October 1, 2019.
The investigation which is more of a study would help the government streamline their policy in regards to loot boxes. A recent British Columbia University study found that loot boxes and gambling are linked as people who participate in loot boxes show certain similarity in terms of their understanding of “gambling” with those suffering from gambling addiction.
To begin with, the consumer protection authority will consult with the country’s national public health department, the gambling regulator and the media council.
The study is research-oriented and does not involve categorical or particular investigation of any operator or brand as such. The focus is on finding and verifying popular claims made by studies which indicate that loot boxes are similar to other gambling activities like casino or sports betting.
The debate around loot boxes seems to be heating up in different geopolitical jurisdictions all across the globe – several regulators are now planning to have a defined policy to ensure consumer protection and keep it separate from gambling.
The popular argument which declassifies “loot boxes” as gambling is that the video games don’t have the option to cash out and the items generated through a loot-box in most cases don’t have a monetary value.
However, the problem is not just the right away monetary value, but the very nature of the activity and the items generated do have some kind of value which can be materialized in many different ways including in-app purchases or trading it on a secondary market.
Earlier last week, it was reported that China had banned all video poker games in its bid to curb gambling in all its forms. Following the ban, a popular video game PUBG is also removed from the Chinese market as it failed to secure a monetization license from the authorities.