Ireland signed declaration of concern but won’t regulate lockboxes as gambling

    
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Remember two weeks ago when a bunch of representatives from the Europe and US cosigned a declaration noting concerns over skin-betting and lockboxes at the 2018 Gambling Regulators European Forum? Nothing signed at the forum was binding, of course, merely a warning shot.

That said, at least one national cosignatory has since admitted it has no actual plans to do anything about the “blurring of lines between gaming and gambling.” That’d be the country of Ireland, as its Minister of State for Justice with special responsibility for Equality, Immigration, and Integration, David Stanton, told Irish senators last week.

“Where a game offers the possibility of placing a bet or the taking of risk for financial reward within the game, then, in my view it must be licensed as a gambling product. To offer gambling products in Ireland, a license is required under the Betting Acts 1931-2015 or the Gaming and Lotteries Act 1956. The Revenue Commissioners are the primary responsible licensing authority under both Acts, with some involvement of the Minister for Justice and Equality. However, it should be understood, that if a game offers in-game purchases – be they loot boxes, skins, etc. – which are promoted to gamers as increasing their chances of success, such purchases are essentially a commercial or e-commerce activity. This activity would fall within normal consumer law.”

Consequently, he said, Ireland’s Department of Justice “does not have a role to regulate game developers on how their games work nor, in the offering of in-game purchases.” However, as both our sources note, Ireland is in the process of revamping its gambling laws and creating a new gambling regulatory body in the country.

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Kevin McCaughey

I’m Irish (Northern Irish) and can maybe give you a bit of background to this. Ireland was hit harder than most other countries in the 2008 crash and had HUGE cuts. Since then it has done ANYTHING to make money. Ireland is currently a prostitute in the world of business in a desperate attempt to rebuild its economy. Hence this decision.

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Crowe

Well, that’s almost something. Good almost doing something, Ireland government!

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Paragon Lost

Basically they’re letting the rest of EU set the tone and laws. They’ll just go along with whatever. Aka passing the buck. lol

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Schlag Sweetleaf

.

NOT SO FIGHTIN' IRISH.gif
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rafael12104

Nicely done. LOL!

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Your Honor

This just means that Ireland will do whatever EU wants to do as a whole with this loot boxes nonsense, but in the meantime whoever makes the decision whether or not it is gambling just got paid a lot of money.

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rafael12104

I declare that I will no longer eat bacon. Yup, you can’t stop me. I’m “Declaring It!”

Now, let me finish my BLT, please.

Next week I’m going to declare that I will no longer use an indoor toilet.

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Arktouros

And the dominoes wobbled for a bit but ultimately stood firm doing nothing.

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Zora

In legislative spiel, regulating means “how much money can we levy off this thing” so that means Ireland specifically isn’t interested (yet) in getting a slice of lockboxes profits.

Other governments might decide the concern needs to solidify in partaking in the moolah though, so not all is lost… maybe they will allow you to write off lockboxes in your tax return, when legislators ever failed to meet our needs before after all!

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Arktouros

There’s basically no money in it.

In the case of places like Belgium you can see they’ve had to dedicate resources into researching games, potentially creating lawsuits, etc and most companies just do a last minute switcharoo and turn them off entirely for their country only. All the time the country invested 100% down the drain with no fines levied and their citizens just bypass it with a VPN.

Meanwhile any country who does have any immensely profitable games, where a large chunk of profit comes from lock boxes, they’re not only wasting money looking into technological issues that can quickly adapt but also now hurting tax revenue as they’ll potentially decrease the profitability of the company in their country. If I’m not mistaken Ireland does a lot of business supporting other major companies out there wouldn’t be surprised if some of those were game related.

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Armsbend

A declaration of concern.

And people say Governments aren’t useless. I’d bet a stack of chips that little Irish children will be reciting this declaration before class starts in a few short years. Moving stuff to be sure.

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Palistarius

I’m not all that worried. They accidentally legalized ecstasy here (for a very brief period) a few years ago, fun times :)