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UK parliamentary inquiry recommends regulating loot boxes

A nine-month parliamentary inquiry by the UK’s Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport resulted in an 84-page report based on evidence taken from game developers, trade bodies, and academics, though it claimed there was a “lack of honesty and transparency” among game company representatives.

The committee chair, MP Damian Collins, took issue with the position of the UK Gambling Commission—which has repeatedly stated that loot boxes aren’t gambling—saying that gaming companies need to be more responsible, and if the government wants to maintain their current stance, that loot boxes should be exempt from the gambling act, they need to publish a paper explaining why.

The committee also recommended the gambling content warning label be applied to games, with a corresponding age limit. 

The inquiry wasn’t just investigating the connection between loot boxes and gambling, however. It also called for the games industry to support research into the “long-term effects of gaming”, and criticized the implementation of age-verification systems more generally.


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