French Senator raises Loot Boxes to France’s Gambling Regulator

French Senator raises Loot Boxes to France’s Gambling Regulator

Senator Jérôme Durain (Saône-et-Loire in France), has written to France’s Gambling Regulator regarding loot boxes in video games.


In a letter dated the 16th November, Durain wrote to the President of ARJEL (France’s online gambling regulator) requesting that he look into the possibility of providing consumer protections when it came to loot boxes.

If you speak French, you are welcome to read the original form of the letter which was posted by Jérôme Durain on his Twitter account.

If you don’t speak French then you can check out the translated version by Reddit user /u/Artfunkel.

The letter reads

Today, loot boxes seem to me to require special attention from the public authorities. Many players and specialized observers  question the deleterious effects of the spread of these micro-transactions in the world of video games.

While I do not think it is necessary at this stage to put in place specific legislation, I wonder about the desirability of providing consumer protection in this area. The use of loot boxes conferring cosmetic additions to the games seems well-accepted by the public. The development of so-called pay-to-win practices is more contentious, as shown by the recent controversy over the game Star Wars Battlefront 2. Quite aside from the acceptance of the practice, some observers point to a convergence of the video game world and practices specific to gambling.

Transparency is not common with regard to statistics governing loot boxes, even though good practices sometimes exist. China has decided in favour of a transparency of win ratios. Some of our European neighbours (the United Kingdom and Belgium in particular) are looking into the matter through their regulatory authorities. So we see that the question is not unique to France. Does ARJEL have the infrastructure necessary for a general census of win ratios for micro transactions?

It should be noted that Durain isn’t your typical politician going after video games, in fact he opens his letter praising the rise of video games and the growing popularity of eSports.

I can only offer my congratulations on the positive trend in the world of video games in general and that of e-sport in particular. Economically dynamic, this cultural industry seems to me a positive contribution to the country: far from the accusation of being an ultra-violent culture that was made only a few years ago, video games allows millions of players to flourish, to exchange, and to develop a practice sometimes close to high level sport.

While the letter does specifically call out the recent events with Star Wars Battlefront II, the tone of the letter points to the idea of loot boxes as a system in all games be investigated.

Of course, sending a letter to the President of ARJEL doesn’t mean that anything, in particular, will happen. It will be at the President of ARJEL’s discretion as to whether loot boxes need consumer protections and whether they need further investigation.…

The post French Senator raises Loot Boxes to France’s Gambling Regulator appeared first on Eastern European Gaming – News – Interviews – Legal Market Updates – Premium Reports – Events – Directory.

Leave a Reply