There is currently a new debate springing up across the United Kingdom over something called “skin betting,” and the controversy that surrounds it is making huge headlines.
“Skin Betting” is a form of betting for young kids who play video games and are being caught with something called loot boxes.
Loot boxes are accessories that players can purchase for their characters on video games.
So, one may ask, how does this work as a form of gambling?
Well, the U.K. Gambling Commission released a statement that suggested these loot boxes were introducing betting to children at an early age, something the agency is vehemently fighting against.
There is a 2017 report that claims about 11 percent of children aged 11 to 16 and residing in the U.K. are now engaging in skin-betting events. These kids and teens exchange items, skins, and players via a third party with real money.
Doesn’t sound too bad, does it? Just wait a minute.
The report that has been released showed a significant amount of kids and teens purchasing items via a third party. For many, that is OK. It is considered a micro-transaction, in which more value is added to a game by supplying more items and supplies to the players.
However, in this scenario, kids and teens can gamble their items in exchange for better items. The young kids and teens can enter a casino-like game area where the winners, who engage in this game, are rewarded in the form of more valuable items.
This scenario may sound a bit exaggerated. However, this is an illicit activity that is geared toward young kids. They are easily convinced to purchase and engage in acts that do not have the best of intentions in mind.
Boys are much more prone to engaging in this activity than girls. The problem arises because young boys are paying for these items and participating in the betting events via a third party.
They are also using PayPal and their parents’ credit cards to get these items and engage in the illegal activity. This is real money these kids and teens are using, and this is what is causing such a ruckus among parents and the U.K. Gambling Association.
The UKCG report
Because these items the kids are purchasing are bought with real money, the UKCG sees this as unregulated gambling. Even worse, this activity is geared toward minors.
Despite this, young kids and teens are still finding ways to engage in these gambling events. It probably is no wonder why this is such a huge issue.
This event is introducing gambling to kids at a very young age. In Britain, right now, there is a huge problem with gambling addiction and this is something the government is trying to stop.
The government fears introducing kids to gambling at such a young age will make them just as prone, even more so, to gambling as some adults.
The nation has seen a massive spike in gambling addiction, and many parents, as well as the UKCG, are worried about the younger generation becoming addicted to gambling.
Video games have also been coming under scrutiny for many years for the level of addiction they cause in young kids and teens. With these startlingly new revelations, it appears that kids and teens may very well have a new form of addiction that they will have to overcome.
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