Australian Government Warns Against Gateway Gambling
18 Dec 2013 Orion 1
The Government of Southern Australia is campaigning to inform its citizens on what it sees as a dangerous problem facing its youth: gaming leading to gambling. This may seem reminiscent of the recent South Korean legislative efforts, but is much less of a cause for concern, and is actually a pretty smart public service campaign.
The site that Southern Australia has set up is pretty boiler-plate. The slogan “Gambling is No Game” inspires the domain http://nogame.com.au/, as well as their no-nonsense attitude about the effects of exposing young children to simulated gambling and games that follow similar structures. What is SA doing? The site asks, and responds:
The South Australian Government has a plan to help keep young South Australians safe in the online world and reduce their exposure to simulated gambling games.
Details include information and awareness campaigns as well as much more proactive measures, including applying stricter ratings to games that include simulated gambling. This is already an issue in Australia, as games that contain even references to drugs have been given higher ratings or banned altogether. This higher rating is the point of contention for people like Ron Curry, CEO of the Interactive Games and Entertainment Association, who is speaking out against the new measures.
While this may seem like a quick and blind push against video games, the truth is that is is not very severe and that it is well-intentioned. It cannot be denied that there has been an increase in games that apply a monetization strategy similar to a casino. Losing too much at Candy Crush can be remedied by buying extra lives. There is a wealth of games and apps that simulate gambling but give an advantage to the winner, giving them a false confidence in gambling. I, for one, would like to see warnings placed on games that encourage in-app purchases before parents hand their iPads – complete with stored credit card info – to their young children. If we start seeing adult games like Red Dead Redemption getting banned outright for their simulated gambling content, I think it’ll be the time to deride the government’s decision.Orion (64 Posts)
Orion grew up playing well-known Nintendo 64 games and cult classic PC strategy gems. He is excited about the potential video games have as a storytelling medium. That said, he really enjoys board games and wants nothing more than some friends who feel the same way. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
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