Kerry Hopkins, EA’s vice president of legal and government affairs, has told to the UK Parliament that loot boxes are just “surprise mechanics” like Kinder Eggs.
EA is getting most of their profits from FIFA Ultimate Team version’s loot boxes and has been desperate to prove to governments around the world that they are not gambling.
This week, it was the turn of the UK’s Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport Committee to hear a defence of the practice from both EA and Epic Games. Kerry Hopkins insisted that loot boxes are “surprise mechanics” and no different to toys such as Kinder Eggs or Hatchimals, which have been around, and tolerated, for years.
“We do think the way that we have implemented these kinds of mechanics – and FIFA of course is our big one, our FIFA Ultimate Team and our packs – is actually quite ethical and quite fun, quite enjoyable to people,” Hopkins said.
“We do agree with the UK gambling commission, the Australian gambling commission, and many other gambling commissions that they aren’t gambling, and we also disagree that there’s evidence that shows it leads to gambling. Instead we think it’s like many other products that people enjoy in a healthy way, and like the element of surprise,” Hopkins added.
Betsoft Gaming Launches its Slot Gaming Titles on 888casino
Betsoft Gaming has launched its slot gaming titles on 888casino, one of the world’s leading online casino brands and part of 888 Holdings plc.
Following its recently announced deal with 888casino, the teams have worked together to integrate a selection of Betsoft’s games onto 888casino’s Spanish platform, 888casino.
To support its commitment to the Spanish market, Betsoft has undertaken the translation of many of its biggest hits. These will be available on 888casino, along with the latest releases Tower of Fortuna, Return to Paris and Thai Blossoms also forming part of the offering.
Betsoft Gaming successfully undertook two ISMS audits in 2020, allowing it to operate in both Spain and Colombia. This, in conjunction with Betsoft’s other signings with top tier licensees in Spain, has consolidated Betsoft’s brand recognition across the country.
“As a long-term innovator in iGaming, it is our strategy to collaborate with operators such as 888casino who share our ethos on quality customer service. We are very pleased now to be live with them in Spain,” Anastasia Bauer, Head of Account Management at Betsoft Gaming, said.
“We are delighted to be adding Betsoft’s leading gaming content to our 888casino platform in Spain. Betsoft is renowned for creating innovative gaming titles which are loved by players and adding a selection of its most innovative games to our platform will provide our players in Spain with an even wider selection of high-quality and player-focused games to choose from, aligning with our product and content-leadership strategy. We look forward to working with Betsoft in the future,” Talya Benyamini, VP B2C Casino at 888, said.
GIS and EPIC Risk Management to Host Pioneering Gambling Awareness Summit at Wembley Stadium
Global Institute of Sport (GIS) will join forces with EPIC Risk Management this autumn to deliver a pioneering gambling-harm awareness event at the iconic Wembley Stadium.
The partnership, which also sees GIS become EPIC’s official education partner, will involve the two parties coming together to host the inaugural Global Gambling Harm in Sport Summit on Wednesday 5th October.
Taking place at the world-famous Wembley Stadium, home to one of GIS’ unique UK campuses, the summit will enable a host of the world’s premier executives and welfare professionals from elite sport and esports to gather and learn how best to tackle the issue of gambling harm in their industry.
John Millington, senior director at EPIC Risk Management, said: “Problem gambling can affect any individual from any walk of life, but several academic studies have reached the same finding that athletes are up to four times more likely to suffer its consequences.
“Clearly, education and prevention work for those who regularly participate in competitive sport is a hugely important in tackling this issue. This summit is designed to bring in experts across the professional sport eco-system to delve into this issue and look at ways of protecting those most vulnerable from gambling harm.
“GIS are the perfect partner to help undertake research and mine data on this topic and have joined forces with us to ensure that we can ensure that the right people can continue to receive it, contribute to it, and act upon it.
“They will be making a vital contribution to the Pro Sport Advisory Board in the longer term via their new status as our Education Partner and we’re delighted that their iconic base at Wembley Stadium will be the perfect setting for some important discussions to take place among the people who can enact genuine change for the better on this issue.”
GIS president Sharona Friedman said: “We’re delighted to have partnered with EPIC Risk Management to deliver the Gambling Harm Prevention in Sport Summit at our iconic Wembley stadium campus.
“The Global Institute of Sport wants to help address some of the key issues across sport and we look forward to working with EPIC Risk Management on facilitating this discussion as well as working to create future recommendations of best practice.
“Bringing together leaders from across the sports industry to all put forward insight and experiences related to the issues around gambling related harm is the first step in exploring how we can best work towards reducing the risks associated.”
Stats Perform Named as Official Data Provider for the Rugby League World Cup 2021
Rugby League World Cup 2021 (RLWC2021) has appointed Stats Perform as their exclusive Official Data Partner for the re-arranged men’s, women’s and wheelchair competitions taking place this year in England.
Stats Perform’s Opta data will support RLWC2021 and their partners in creating unique experiences for their audiences across media, brands and sponsors, which will be unveiled and showcased before and during the event. RLWC2021’s continued alignment with Stats Perform reinforces the competition’s commitment to ensuring that media and technology partners covering the competitions are provided with the highest quality data to bring every match to life for fans around the world.
Detailed data will be delivered through an extensive range of Opta data feeds, with Stats Perform’s highly visual, easily customisable widgets providing data-powered solutions for use across digital and social platforms, before, during and after the action.
Opta data and statistics will power RLWC2021’s social channels, where they will help determine the competition’s top performing players and inform and empower fans.
Stats Perform will create extensive preview and post-match packs for the clubs and media ahead of all matches, allowing broadcast operations and commentators full use of Opta data in a time-efficient way.
Steve Xeller, Chief Revenue Officer of Stats Perform, said: “We’re delighted to announce our partnership with Rugby League World Cup 2021 and be a part of powering the first Rugby League World Cup that encompasses the men’s, women’s and wheelchair competitions within one tournament.
“Stats Perform has a long history of growing Rugby League globally through our market leading data, content, and distribution, and this deal is yet another milestone in Stats Perform’s commitment to supporting the expansion of the sport across the globe.”
The national competing team coaches, analysts and performance staff will also have access to RugbyHub, Stats Perform’s flexible, fully integrated platform at the core of analysis in professional rugby, providing a central store of data and video content that allows teams to access crucial information as soon as they need it.
Integrated match footage is synchronised with data, allowing users to easily access matches and analyse the key areas specific to a game plan. Teams will also be provided with detailed analytical reports following every match, providing performance insights which can help inform tactical decision making as the tournament progresses.
Jon Dutton, RLWC2021 Chief Executive, said: “The RLWC2021 is committed to making a real impact in communities, and one of the ways we can support this is by delivering the best possible experiences for our passionate fans, along with supplying our partners and teams with the highest quality match data.
“Stats Perform have been appointed as our official data supplier, due to their longevity and reliable history in the industry. I look forward to working with them as they help us deliver the biggest, best and most inclusive Rugby League World Cup in history.”
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