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Washington State Could Lead Charge Against Loot Boxes in Online Gaming

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Washington State Could Lead Charge Against Loot Boxes in Online GamingReading Time: 3 minutes

Washington state Senator Kevin Ranker introduced legislation bill in January that seeks an answer to this question: If they look, sound, and seem like gambling, are online-game loot boxes really gambling?

And more importantly, do these loot boxes, sometimes known as “loot crates,” which demand real money from game players for a chance to win in-game items, prey upon unsuspecting children?

Loot boxes or crates are virtual items in online games that a player can redeem to receive more virtual items for his avatar or character. It’s a way for online and mobile gaming companies to make money. The players can purchase the boxes outright, with cash, or buy keys to open the boxes.

China, Japan and Australia already regulate loot boxes.

PC Gamer reported Sweden’s Minister for Public Administration Ardalan Shekarabi said his country might classify loot boxes as gambling next year.

“It is obvious that there are many people suffering from gambling addiction, who also get stuck in this type of gambling and lose money because of it,” Shekarabi said.

What the bill says is, ‘Industry, state: sit down to figure out the best way to regulate this,’” Ranker told the Tacoma News Tribune. “It is unacceptable to be targeting our children with predatory gambling masked in a game with dancing bunnies or something.”

If parents realized how predatory these games are,” Ranker said, “they wouldn’t want them under their Christmas tree.”

Hawaii state Rep. Chris Lee’s legislation doesn’t seek to answer the question of whether loot boxes are gambling. To the Democrat’s mind, there is no doubt that they are nothing more than online casinos that should be kept out of the hands of children.

Lee also wants a warning on games that have “gambling-based mechanics” and to state the odds of winning what’s in the loot boxes.

Lee said he fell victim to online game when he download the game Clash of Clans a couple of years ago.

At one point,” Lee told Kotaku, “I started buying crystals. I ended up spending a few hundred dollars over the course of a few months.”

When he realized what he had done, Lee deleted the game from his phone and “there was no value left – it’s just money that’s gone.”

Lee said he wasn’t alone in falling into the trap offered by loot boxes and crates. Teachers in his district told Lee plenty of stories about families who had to pay their kids’ gambling bills.

Lee also said adults, as well as children, need to be protected from “predatory practices in online gaming and the significant financial consequences it has been having on families around this nation.”

I think this is an appropriate time to make sure these issues are addressed before this becomes the new norm for every game,” Lee said.

Fellow Democratic State Rep. Sean Quinlan said during a press conference in support of Lee’s legislation, “We didn’t allow Joe Camel to encourage your kids to smoke cigarettes and we shouldn’t allow Star Wars to encourage our kids to gamble.”

Polygon reported that game players began pushing back against loot crates and boxes last year, as did reviewers of the games.

When you run out of in-game money, you have two choices: Make a huge time investment by hunting down orcs in your game world and earning chests via vendetta missions, or spend some real money to get the more powerful orcs you need now. Does the game ever force you to spend money?” read a Polygon review of the game Middle-Earth: Shadow of War. “No. I’m sure you can get to the end of Shadow Wars without spending a dime, as long as you’re patient and persistent.”

But locking progress through this mode (and, again, toward the game’s secondary ending) behind either spending more money or doing tons of tedious busywork feels at least greedy if not predatory,” the review concluded.

However, the Entertainment Software Rating Board told the Tacoma News Tribune it does not consider loot boxes to be gambling.

While the digital goods within a box or pack are mostly randomized, the player is always gauranteed {sic} to receive in-game content,” an ESRB spokesperson said in an email.

Christopher Hansford, the political engagement director of a new lobbying group that is all about creating an awareness of online gambling, Consumers for Digital Fairness, disagrees.

We’re a group of folks who are sick and tired of seeing people and a medium we love exploited by unfair practices,” Hansford told Polygon. “So we decided to put our skills and experience to work to tackle this issue.”

A CDF statement on the group’s website claimed that loot boxes or crates usually contain nothing but “worthless trash.”

These practices involving real-money inputs and games of chance simply doesn’t belong in video games,” the statement read in part. “These loot boxes would be more at home in casinos and other licensed gaming establishments with adults, not our living rooms in the hands of our children.”

 

Source: pjmedia.com


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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MultiLotto, partners with ConversionBet to create a new digital acquisition channel

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MultiLotto, partners with ConversionBet to create a new digital acquisition channelReading Time: 2 minutes

Leading online European gaming site strategically partners with iGaming remarketing leader to uncover and accelerate new revenue opportunities.

 

ConversionBet, the leader in iGaming behavioural marketing software and analytics, today announced its partnership with MultiLotto, a leading European Lotto & Casino site part of Multi Group PLC.

“Marketing is around growing the business – and in the last 5 years, acquisition channels have barely evolved within iGaming. The only way that marketers in this industry will succeed is to create non-disruptive digital experiences and the key to that is truly identifying a brand’s consumers and providing the most relevant digital experience based on their behaviours,” said Dan Morrison, Founder and CEO at ConversionBet “Alex and his team at MultiLotto represent a highly prescient vision that serves as a model for other digital marketers globally to follow.”

ConversionBet’s full suite of behavioural remarketing solutions will help accelerate Multilotto’s monetization capabilities. By leveraging ConversionBet’s cross-device identification platform, MutiLotto expects to see significant impact to its acquisition KPIs and to drive new players into its business at reduced CPAs.

Putting a heavier focus on the importance of pre-registration relationships is key when attempting to increase conversion rates and frequency of FTDs. The team at ConversionBet believe that the key to success is treating each session as an individual person, rather than collective traffic as a whole, gently disrupting negative processes to increase engagement and effectively encourage users towards conversion. Since their inception, ConversionBet have adopted a customer-centric approach, constantly developing and improving the platform to supersede anything else on the market where client needs and system capabilities are concerned.

Alex Sakota, Chief Revenue Officer at MultiLotto said, “ConversionBet looks at customer acquisition and conversion in an entirely unexplored part of the customer funnel, a part that is before our CRM team. We’re always looking for creative new strategies that surface new audiences and drive revenue. We look forward to seeing Conversionbet enhance the effectiveness of our marketing efforts across all consumer touch points; and driving continuity of experiences across devices, sessions and channels through real-time website adaptivity, email & SMS.”

Alex goes on to say, “With ConversionBet, we will have the power to seamlessly reach untapped revenue that no other partner has been able to provide before, in a way that is completely complementary with our other revenue strategies.”

ConversionBet helps hundreds of iGaming operators create true people-based digital experiences for their players.

 


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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LeoVegas wins “Brand of the Year” at prestigious EGR M&I Awards

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Last week, the prestigious EGR M&I Awards were held in London, and LeoVegas won the award for “Brand of the Year” in strong competition with the all of industry’s operators. The prize is awarded to LeoVegas for being the “most innovative and creative operator in the online gaming industry, recognizing that LeoVegas have pushed themselves to bring something new to the industry while keeping focus on their core value of delivering mobile entertainment”.

LeoVegas also won the awards “Affiliate Marketing Campaign of the Year” and “Innovation in Mobile & Tablet“.

Louise Nylén, CMO of LeoVegas, comments: “We are proud of and happy about all three awards, but “Brand of the Year” really stands out, as it shows our will and drive to work with innovation and development of our brand. This award is the result of dedicated work from a very strong team.”

Gustaf Hagman, LeoVegas Group CEO, comments: “Winning ‘Brand of the Year’ is proof that we are constantly working towards our vision – “Leading the Way into the Mobile Future” and solidifies LeoVegas as a serious company that is here to stay. I am very proud of this award. It gives us further drive to continue to evolve and improve our brand.”

 

For further information, please contact:

Gustaf Hagman, Group CEO and co-founder: +46 (0) 8 410 367 66, gustaf.hagman@leovegas.com

Philip Doftvik, Head of Investor Relations: +46 73 512 07 20, philip.doftvik@leovegas.com

About the LeoVegas mobile gaming group

LeoVegas’ passion is “Leading the way into the mobile future”. LeoVegas is Sweden’s premier GameTech company and is at the forefront of using state-of-the-art technology for mobile gaming. In 2017 the company passed the threshold for being classified as a unicorn, i.e., a start-up valued at more than USD 1 billion. A large part of this success can be credited to an extreme product and technology focus coupled with effective and data-driven marketing. Technology development is conducted in Sweden, while operations are based in Malta. LeoVegas offers casino, live casino and sports betting, and operates two global and scalable brands – LeoVegas and Royal Panda – as well as a local, multibrand operator collectively referred to as Rocket X. The company’s shares are listed on Nasdaq Stockholm. For more about LeoVegas, visit www.leovegasgroup.com.


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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Police Nabs Four Ukrainians for Running Fake Cryptocurrency Exchanges

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Police Nabs Four Ukrainians for Running Fake Cryptocurrency ExchangesReading Time: 1 minute

Ukraine’s National Police nabbed four suspects, who reportedly ran six fake cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. They were arrested last week from Dnipro city, after which their homes were raided, and several computers and smartphones were seized. The police do not have any report on the stolen funds yet.

The alleged culprits lured users by promoting the exchanges with fake positive ratings and online reviews. The police reportedly said that the suspects had “special knowledge and skills in the field of programming” and “have created their own CMS-system for managing the content of exchange sites.”

During the raid of the suspects’ homes, the police reportedly seized computers, flash drives, smartphones, and other devices. According to a spokesperson for the Ukrainian National Police, “the list of sites is not complete.” Now authorities are asking users to provide information about whether they were deceived by fraudulent exchanges before.

Last Wednesday, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission received an additional emergency court order to freeze the assets of Dominic Lacroix, owner of PlexCorps. Lacroix and his partner, Sabrina Paradis-Royer, were accused of violating securities law in respect to the PlexCoin initial coin offering (ICO) conducted by PlexCorps in August last year. The ICO reportedly raised $15 million from “thousands of investors.”

 

Source: Cointelegraph.com


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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