Following on from the news that the UK Gambling Commission has commenced a consultation process concerning gambling harm, inviting in the process feedback and input from all stakeholders within the industry, including customers. Reports in the mainstream media are suggesting that the UKGC is looking at introducing a cap on monthly losses, with the Daily Mail newspaper suggesting a £100 loss cap could be introduced.
The article which was published on the Mail’s site Mail Online yesterday, which can be viewed here in its entirety, suggests that gamblers’ losses could be capped at £100 a month, to ensure that betting companies are “forced” to help combat gambling addiction.
The article goes on to quote the Daily Telegraph, where it was reported that a suggested loss limit of £2,000 per month were raised and discussed, but this amount was seen as neither realistic or appropriate.
How policing a loss limit on individuals certainly in a land based environment, such as betting shops and casinos could be enforced is quite another thing.
Certainly over the past year there have been growing calls from a vocal minority, led by the likes of national newspapers such as the Daily Mail and The Guardian, to introduce punitive measures on operators, such as bet stake limits on online casino games.
These latest reports suggesting the idea of forcing operators to police and enforce individual monthly loss limits on players, is yet another idea which could certainly see more operators toss away their coveted UKGC licence and leave the regulated UK marketplace.
Responsible gambling and in turn providing measures to support affordable gambling is of course an important area which the industry and the regulator in the form of the UKGC needs to address. But by even suggesting introducing loss limits or bet stake limits, does major harm not only to the industry, but to the majority of people that have a handle on their gambling and see it as an adult form of entertainment.
If such a ruling ever comes into place and being, the UKGC would be indirectly responsible in driving players to the open arms of operators based in unregulated territories such as Curacao, who in turn provide no protection for players. No doubt, the operators based there are already popping open their champagne bottles!