EGBA Asks for More Cooperation to Help with Responsible Gambling

by ecograap on May 28,2008

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European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) would like more cooperation in promoting and helping with responsible gambling. It is the duty of all online gambling sites to help take part in this endeavor!

Inaugural “Responsible Gambling Day” attended by academics, politicians and industry reps

Key stakeholders from across the online gaming industry spoke with one voice at the inaugural ‘Responsible Gaming Day’ event at the European Parliament last month, calling on the European Union for greater cooperation to ensure a safer and more secure online gaming environment for consumers.

The event, the first of its kind to be hosted at the European Parliament, saw a number of MEPs, the EU Slovenian Presidency, regulators and academics join industry representatives to exchange best practices and knowledge in the field of responsible gaming.

Norbert Teufelberger, Chairman of the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) said: “No matter how much we do, no matter how many rules we put into place, and no matter how good we are – no solution will be optimal if it is not inclusive and based on the full cooperation and commitment of all stakeholders.”

Christofer Fjellner, MEP (EPP-ED, Sweden) added, “The key ticket to entering national markets is consumer protection. Using this as an argument to protect monopolies is simply letting consumers down.” Continuing the monopolies theme, it was argued that as state operators can be regulated, so can private operators, a point emphasised by Unibet’s Petter Nylander in his address on policy frameworks for the gaming industry.

Protection of minors was also a key focus of yesterday’s discussions. Andrew Poole, Managing Director, GamCare commented: “There needs to be shared responsibility to minimise underage gaming. Consistent regulation across jurisdictions and proper education are key in achieving an effective industry-wide response to underage gaming.”

This view was echoed by Leon Thomas, Head of Regulatory Compliance at PartyGaming who stated “We want governments to help us to help consumers.”

The event also featured academia specialised in gaming and betting behaviour research who emphasised the need to use scientific research rather than conjecture when talking about online problem gaming.

Richard LaBrie, Ed. D. Harvard Medical School commented: “The advantage of online gaming is that you can track data in real time rather than relying on self reports, which may lack reliability.”

I agree with this whole heartedly. If everyone would take part, then there would be no need to worry about enjoying yourself when you gamble online.