Responsible Gambling As US Expansion Continues

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While there have been many great developments in the world of online gambling over the years, there are some negative side effects.

The main one is the increase in the levels of people with gambling addiction. This is a very crippling problem that can be hidden for a long time but can have a massively debilitating impact on all aspects of a person’s life.

With online gambling rapidly expanding across the United States, there are concerns that matters could get out of hand and gambling addiction rates will start to spiral out of control. With many states only legalizing online gambling for the first time, it is likely that there will be teething problems when it comes to the rules and regulations of the sector.

One of the things that regulators can do is look at online gambling markets in other countries that have been well established in order to see how they manage problem gambling. One of the most established online gambling markets in the world is in the UK. The state officials across the US can look at the UK model in order to see what works well and what could be improved upon. This is exactly what this article will be looking at.


The UKGC and GamStop


The chief gambling regulator in the UK is the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC). This body is tasked with handing out licenses to gambling operators and making sure that these parties are keeping in line with the region’s gambling laws.

The UKGC will also implement new changes as it sees fit in order to make sure that the gambling sector is operating in as responsible of a manner as it possibly can be. It has implemented numerous restrictions in recent year on the gambling sector. These include the likes of spin timers, limits on bet sizes, as well as banning the use of credit cards.

As there is a lot for the UKGC to manage, there are other parties that lend a hand. GamStop is a not-for-profit group that works closely with the UKGC. It offers a free self-exclusion program that covers every single operator that has a UKGC license. This cannot be reversed once it has been put in place, so it is a very effective tool for people who are trying to avoid gambling on these platforms at all costs. The periods of self-exclusion can vary from about six months up to a few years.


How Do Casinos Not on Gamstop Work?


One of the big issues that the UKGC and GamStop are having has been the prevalence of non-GamStop casinos. These are platforms that are based overseas and do not fall under the oversight of the UKGC. Therefore, people in the UK can legally use these platforms as they please. Many of these non-GamStop casinos will be licensed by other authorities.

The Malta Gaming Authority is one of the more respected regulators in this regard. However, you do not have a service as of yet like GamStop that covers these types of casino sites. You will just be able to usually self-exclude from each individual site, rather than being able to mass exclude yourself. There are also concerns that people who have been self-excluded from UKGC sites through GamStop will be able to bypass this exclusion by using non-GamStop casinos.

There are numerous attractions to using these types of platforms. There will usually be a lot more choice and freedom given to players. This means that game libraries will be bigger, there are larger betting limits, fewer restrictions on game features, more payment options, and better bonus offers. Therefore, with the UKGC increasing restrictions on its licensees, there are more people now considering casinos not on GamStop as a viable alternative. This is something that the UK authorities are now having to deal with. You can find out more about these alternative casinos on websites like this.


GamStop Sites vs Non-UK Casinos


There are pros and cons associated with both types of casino sites. It is worthwhile taking an overview of these different features when you are weighing up the differences and similarities.

GamStop Sites Pros


·  Easily accessible

·  Mass self-exclusion a possibility

·  Plenty of resources and support networks for problem gamblers

·  Third-party conflict resolution facilities

·  No debt accumulation payment methods


GamStop Sites Cons


·  Restrictions on games

·  Lower betting limits

·  Fewer payment method options

·  Smaller game libraries


Non-GamStop Sites Pros


·  Greater level of game variety

·  Fewer restrictions on titles

·  More payment methods

·  Larger bonus offers

·  Wider range of betting limits


Non-GamStop Sites Cons


·  No mass self-exclusion

·  Lack of a third party conflict resolution service

·  Ability to avoid GamStop self-exclusion


What Method is Right for the United States?


Lawmakers in the United States are all looking to put in place rules and regulations that encourage freedom of choice as much as possible and maximizing resulting tax revenues while still trying to protect gamblers. This is a hard balance to strike in a lot of ways. Therefore, it appears that there will be some trial and error needed in order to find what sort of approach works best.


This will also vary from state to state as the gambling behaviors will not always be the same. By looking at the likes of the UK gambling sector as an example, there can be many great learnings as to what might work well and what should probably be avoided when it comes to trying to develop a responsible gambling sector.


An exciting time in the US


There is no doubt that there is a wave of excitement spreading across the United States as gambling becomes more and more widely available. More states are waking up to the benefits that are associated with legalizing the various forms of online gambling. Protecting gamblers will always be a priority in these states and will go hand in hand with this form of expansion.

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