Wednesday 20. April, 2016

Tabcorp’s Esports Partner Warns About Underage Betting on Video Games

Rahul Sood, chief executive of Unikrn, Tabcorp’s esports partner, has warned that underage gambling on video games is rampant due to the unregulated nature of the sport. Unikrn partnered with Tabcorp last year in order to bring esports betting to Australians. Underage gambling on video games is an issue that is also impacting Australian youth.

Sood claims that gambling advertisements on Twitch, a live streaming video platform, are easily accessible by children and are getting them hooked. He says that these streamers are creating an environment that encourages children to gamble and that they may even be breaking the law.

“The fact is that illegal betting is happening at a rampant rate and it’s dangerous,” Sood wrote in his blog. “Until all sports betting is legalised, there will be sites that spawn up and prey on young people everywhere.”

The global market for skin betting has been growing rapidly and significantly with Chris Grove, senior consultant at Eilers and Krejcik Gaming, saying that a report by the company into gambling in esports shows that the market for skin betting has reached just under $5 billion worldwide in 2016. It is estimated that by 2020, an estimated 17.4 million users will bet on esports, an increase from 2.3 million last year. The report estimated that by 2020, if the growth in skin betting continues, punters would wager $12.7 billion on video games and the industry would generate $1 billion in revenue.

According to Sood, the market is massive and continuing to grow at a significant rate every year. Because it is unregulated, it does not provide the necessary protections to prevent children becoming involved in gambling and as a result, they are.

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