YouTuber apologises for undeclared promotional videos for his own gambling company

By Brenna Hillier, Thursday, 7 July 2016 02:26 GMT

The drama continues.

Update: Since posting this story, Trevor Martin has pulled his apology video from YouTube claiming he was “disappointed in it”. You can read our follow-up story here.

Original story: Above you can view an apology video issued by Trevor Martin, better known as TmarTn in the wake of revelations regarding his role in a third-party Counter-strike: Global Offensive gambling company.

Martin’s video follows PsiSyndicate’s admission that he was paid to participate in rigged videos, but his role in the ongoing Counter-strike: Global Offensive gambling scandal is a more serious one: he’s a part owner of CSGO Lotto.

In the video, Martin claims his role in the company has been “a matter of public record since the company was first organised in December of 2015” – which is true, and it’s how this scandal was blown open. However, this public record was legal documents regarding the company’s formation rather than openly revealed on CSGO Lotto or YouTube, and while Martin’s video descriptions did carry CSGO Lotto sponsorship notes, his financial involvement with the company was not mentioned in either the description or any of the videos which showed him winning big on the gambling site.

“However, I do feel like I owe you guys an apology. I am sorry to each and every one of you who felt like that was not made clear enough to you,” Martin says.

It’s hard not to read this as an apology for our failure to go digging up the owners of a company Martin was promoting rather than for Martin’s own actions, and the video isn’t going down exceptionally well on social media, to say the least; a lot of urine is being extracted.

If you’re not clear on what’s going on here: Counter-strike: Global Offensives loot crates, opened with a key purchased via microtransaction, unlock to reveal various goodies – some of which are traded for whopping amounts on the Steam Marketplace, bringing real money into the equation. A whole ecosystem of third-party sites has grown up around gambling on the contents of these crates.

There are serious questions about the legality of these sites and Valve’s role in facilitating them, not to mention the lack of age gating to keep kids from getting involved, and a suit has been filed against Valve for enabling the system. Valve is yet to make a statement on the matter, which has attracted criticism in legal circles.

This YouTube scandal is just the suspicious icing on an already dubious cake, uncovered by a series of community detectives such as h3h3 Productions after the whole gambling scene came to attention following a Bloomberg report. There are plenty of dismayed former fans considering legal action over the deception.

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