Video game loot boxes are a gateway to gambling, almost a million UK children affected – Gambling Commission study

By Kirk McKeand, Wednesday, 21 November 2018 14:14 GMT

When it comes to loot boxes, there are people who class them as gambling and people who don’t. A new study proves the former correct.

According to the Gambling Commission, loot boxes are like a gateway drug to proper gambling issues, via the BBC. Almost a million children have been exposed to them.

The study found that 39% of UK children aged 11 to 16 regularly gamble, whether online using a parent’s account or privately with friends. The data was collected via an Ipsos Mori study of 2,865 11 to 16-year-olds, conducted earlier this year.

In 2016, prominent YouTubers Trevor “TmarTn” Martin and Tom “ProSyndicate” Cassell were caught promoting a gambling site they owned without disclosing that information.

The pair created videos which showed them winning on the site, CSGOLotto, tempting others to try their luck. The videos had titles such as “HOW TO WIN $13,000 IN 5 MINUTES (CS:GO Betting)”.

After being looked into, the YouTubers reached a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission, but managed to evade any immediate or lasting punishment.

A recent Australian study also found that loot boxes are psychologically akin to gambling. EA also got into hot water with the Belgian Gaming Commission recently for its use of loot boxes in the FIFA series.

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