ICE: Operators have a ‘duty to care’ to players

ICE: Operators have a ‘duty to care’ to players

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Consumer protection is a vital responsibility of a gaming provider, according to Marja Appelman, the chief executive of the Netherlands Gaming Authority.

Appleman, speaking at an International Masters of Gaming Law seminar at ICE Totally Gaming, provided a unique insight into how operators handle player protection policies in the Netherlands.

“We tell operators, ‘you have got a duty of care’, and by that we mean that a provider has a responsibility to offer rational and well-considered gambling to consumers,” Appleman said.

“They also have to explain to us how they do it.

“From our point of view we monitor whether they execute like they told us they would, and we look into that even closer when it comes to the time for them to apply for a licence.

“Now we are going to establish round tables with operators, scientists and health specialists to let them exchange their knowledge. After that providers cannot say afterwards that they did not know how to carry out their duty, because we invited them to join the discussions.”

The audience also heard from Luc Delany, chief executive of the International Social Games Association. He argued that the line between social games and free-to-play versions money games has become blurred with the potential of leading to misconceptions and misunderstandings.

He said: “Where would you draw a line between gambling for money and playing for entertainment now? Where is still a casino and where is not?

“Social games are now often owned by gambling companies. Within the law, you cannot associate one game with another. Actually they are different businesses, which should not try to convert their audience.

“If I see a link on a social game’s website to a real money game, I would expect authorities to do something about it.”

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