UK MP's Urge Play Limits Starting with a Daily Cap of £50/DayPublished April 5, 2021 by Lee R
The interests of operators are clashing with the needs of players, according to UK MPs.
British officials are urging iGaming operators to install temporary betting caps during the covid crisis of £50 a day.
Alternative Betting Offered
With mainstay betting events from Premier League to Grand National canceled, betting operators have turned to promotion of alternative options such as obscure competitions, computer-generated “virtual” sports and online casino games.
To illustrate, the Guardian published an internal email sent by a William Hill senior manager advising staff to “talk to...customers about what other things they can bet on,” including examples “table tennis and Japanese baseball.”
The WH Twitter account offers bets on “international soccer action” including the Belarus Premier League.
Others Channeling Play
With the reduction in sports betting options, many operators including 32Red are advertising on Twitter to channel customers towards more online casino play, which has proven significantly more addictive than sports betting.
Virtual Odds Controversy
Operators Betway and MansionBet have come under significant regulatory duress from British authorities for using Google listings to promote “virtual” events, where customers bet on computer-generated football matches, drawing the ire of a prominent FIFIA virtual tournament organiser in Spain who took umbrage to the offering of odds on the tournament.
Shares Versus Health
With dropping share prices spurring operators to offer odds and bet alternatives, UK MP's have sent a letter to industry trade body the Betting & Gaming Council asserting that the financial well-being of operators cannot be put ahead of the well-being of its customers.
The MP Suggestion
A joint statement addressing the increasing amount of people turning to online gambling written by Labour’s Carolyn Harris; the Conservatives’ Iain Duncan Smith and SNP MP Ronnie Cowan concluded “a daily limit of £50...would be a clear demonstration that the industry is willing to act responsibly and do what they can to protect society and peoples’ finances, at this dreadful time.”
More Limits Suggested
Other limits that the MP's called for included blocks on customers opening multiple accounts and accelerated interventions for customers displaying signs of disordered gambling.
With operators seeking solutions to protect their shares, and the UK cracking down on problem gambling, more will have to give for the end model of the review to take shape, with the measures likely ultimately stringent.