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Belgium, Hawaii to ban, regulate in-game loot boxes as gambling


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104 replies to this topic

#101
Epaminondas

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Naw, I can respect that, Mr. Moderator. As someone new to your community, I appreciate that there must be some point where personal freedom is curtailed for the greater good. It's not that there should be no line but only where that line should be drawn. On one hand, people intent on self-destruction won't be stopped. On the other hand, people can be redeemed and we *should* step in if we can help them. Certainly, we want to keep these folks from taking other people down with them as best we can. The floating line between personal responsibility/freedom and society is apparently right over the drain in the toilet bowl.

#102
Tale

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I'm hesitant to let the government step in due to their history with media censorship (Hayes Code etc.) 

The government didn't really have anything to do with Hayes, did it? It was basically an attempt to reform Hollywood's image. In a way, the MPAA, the ESRB, and the CCA are all the same. Just attempts to make the industries look like they're being responsible so the common populace aren't throwing fits about it. Because the government's ability to censor media is actually not very strong in the US. Heck, all of these self-regulation bodies are entirely optional! You just can't sell in Wal-Mart.

 

So optional in fact that the CCA is defunct now. And it has simply been replaced by "Adults" labels similar to what the music industry does.

 

Censorship is hard for the government to get away with in the US. But there is a long precedent for legislation targetting gambling. I can't speak to whether the government should or not. I really haven't made up my mind there. In an ideal world, our education system would be where gambling is fought, not limitation on the gambling itself. But they're not showing any signs of a willingness to do that.



#103
evilcat

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Govertment step in may mean:

Defining game gambling as potencially harmfull, and limiting it avaiability to spawns.

That sweet, sweet lootboxes for cash will be still on market, just games with such will have 18+ rating and icon "game gambling".

There are some PEGI18 games which are not even so extreme (wolfenstein).

Games targeted to kids will need to remove lootbox for cash MTX, and instead use buy fairy dust to buy cosmetics or whatever.

 

It may feel weird that there are some new rules and guidness, and govertment telling how to live. But on the other hand many modern adults was eating sugar like candy when young, but future parents may view it as very suboptimal build, and will feed kids with carrots.


Edited by evilcat, 06 December 2017 - 02:01 PM.


#104
marelooke

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I'm hesitant to let the government step in due to their history with media censorship (Hayes Code etc.) 

The government didn't really have anything to do with Hayes, did it? It was basically an attempt to reform Hollywood's image. In a way, the MPAA, the ESRB, and the CCA are all the same. Just attempts to make the industries look like they're being responsible so the common populace aren't throwing fits about it. Because the government's ability to censor media is actually not very strong in the US. Heck, all of these self-regulation bodies are entirely optional! You just can't sell in Wal-Mart.

 

So optional in fact that the CCA is defunct now. And it has simply been replaced by "Adults" labels similar to what the music industry does.

 

Censorship is hard for the government to get away with in the US. But there is a long precedent for legislation targetting gambling. I can't speak to whether the government should or not. I really haven't made up my mind there. In an ideal world, our education system would be where gambling is fought, not limitation on the gambling itself. But they're not showing any signs of a willingness to do that.

 

 

The problem with making people responsible for their gambling is that the gambling industry just abuses human psychology so perfectly reasonable people tend to fall for it (people like to think it can never happen to them, like depressive disorders). I imagine that better education would help some, but believing it will eliminate the problem or relegate it to the "unwashed masses" seems naive. As far as I'm concerned the main reason more people don't get gambling addicted in the "real world" is because most people don't really get exposed to it since the majority of it is relegated to casinos (which most of the population doesn't ever visit) and the stuff outside casinos can be described as the "mobile games" of "real world" gambling.

 

Companies like EA lower the barrier of entry by bringing the gambling to the masses, abuse psychology to make people participate as much as possible and target children to boot. "Irresponsible" is the best I could say about this, but "evil" seems more like it.


Edited by marelooke, 07 December 2017 - 02:59 AM.

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#105
Darkpriest

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To be honest, I've had my share of experience with risk management and in the past I even worked as a card dealer in some bigger casinos, and yet even though I am fairly immune to these kind of practices, I still can experience this nice tingle on the back of my head and spine, when getting what i want from a cosmetic crate for TI lootboxes in DotA2 - I even get lured into this trap, "****, i did not get it, but i got opened a few now, so next one has to give me this 'very rare' stuff" - nope, it does not give it as it does not work like that.

 

The difference is, I know where i put my limit for such expense, and I know that at least part of that gets to professional players into their prize money. I do not buy any stuff like this in any other game.

 

Now, a person in age 13-21 or even older, can't really resist those traps, because they are designed to lure you back in. Even casinos in theory have regulations that they need to forbid entry to certain adults, who displayed heavy addiction issues. No such thing in on-line products such as loot boxes.

 

This video was kind of interesting to watch, when someone did a research that EA's base game revenues were shrinking, while the MTX related cash was skyrocketing.

 


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