EL calls for clear separation to be maintained between gambling and gaming as European Parliament adopts resolution on consumer protection in online video games
The European Lotteries (EL) call for a clear separation line to be maintained between gambling and gaming. While this line can sometimes get blurred, jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the EU is clear. All issues involving gambling – including defining what gambling is and what it is not – fall within the exclusive competence of the Member States and should continue to be addressed by the relevant authorities at the national level.
‘’EL welcomes the resolution driven from own-initiative reports of the European Parliament, which calls to ensure adequate protection of consumers and for great transparency’’, states Arjan van ‘t Veer, EL Secretary General. ‘’However, the separation between gambling and gaming should be maintained to regulate gambling on the national level’’.
Today the European Parliament adopted its resolution on “Consumer Protection in Online Video Games – A European Single Market Approach” with 577 votes in favour, 56 against and 15 abstentions. The resolution acknowledges the importance and value of the video games sector whilst also calling for more measures to protect the players.
In particular focus are calls for better protection of minors by making clearer information available on the content, in-game purchase policies and target age group of games along the lines of the Pan European Game Information (PEGI) system already in use. There is an attempt to ensure that parents have good control over how much time and money their children spend playing and a call for a common European approach on loot boxes. Emphasised are also the importance of ensuring data protection and protection of vulnerable groups. To support and unlock the potential of the video games sector as such, the resolution proposes to instate an annual European online video game award and an overall European video game strategy.
EL as the largest sector association for lotteries and toto organisations in Europe, will continue to closely monitor and – as appropriate – get actively involved in this discussion in the best interest of its Members.