With online gaming gathering an even bigger presence to individuals across the globe, the youth of today may be much more affected than previous generations.
Gambling Or Not?
Skins trading is an unregulated and very new form of gambling, allowing underage players to “spin-the-wheel” on various skin prizes. Many do not feel as though this form of trade is actually classified as gambling. However, gambling is defined as “the activity or practice of playing at a game of chance for money or other stakes”.
A New Generation’s Problem?
More and more stories are coming to light with regards to children developing addictive behaviors, and this is with children as young as 7 years old!
Understanding the issues involved with skins trading is one thing, but not having the ability to stop an ever-changing industry scares a lot of parents. With new games being released continuously, millions of pounds being invested into research & development and technology enhancing user experiences (VR for example), there will always seemingly be an uphill battle for parents.
Many individuals admit that they centralise the focus on young people’s potential risks towards more obvious addictions such as drugs & alcohol, not realising that problem gambling can be just as dangerous to any young person’s life. Problem gambling has the highest suicide rate out of all addictions, and therefore should be viewed as a major mental health concern.
Fight For The Future
Just as gambling operators are regulated within a specific region/country, so must the Esports industry be.
Useful apps such as gamban® allow players to take back control to fight their addictive online gambling behaviour, and give parents peace of mind, knowing that their children won’t be able to access gambling websites. This limits the chances of reaching a state of pathological gambling where problems such as running up debt and social issues end up surfacing further down the line.
Game platform providers and payment providers need to act now to help combat this emerging issue! Monzo and Starling Bank have taken preventative measures to assist their account holders with issues that I have discussed above.
It’s a new world, with new world problems. Without a unified approach to these issues, do I personally see it working?
I very much doubt it, but having the software & solutions ready to implement to do so are extremely necessary.
If you or someone you know are suffering from any of the issues raised above, the first step is to put as many obstacles in place between the player and game.
gamban® was recently announced as the number 1 software package, designed to block access to gambling websites and apps on a global scale. Not only have gamban® been recognised as the most technically effective, but they are heavy considered as the most cost effective.
For players based within the United Kingdom, I would also highly suggest signing up to GamStop. They are a self-exclusion scheme that works with a number of gambling operators, allowing players to block access to UK gambling sites.
By: Jonathan Dawson