Gambling Law and Regulation Newsletter – August 2018

Welcome to the August 2018 edition of the Addisons Gambling Law & Regulation Newsletter1.

This is a bumper issue reflecting on many of the industry developments that have occurred this year in advance of the 2018 Australasian Gaming Expo.

The focus papers published in this Newsletter highlight on the following key developments in gambling law:

a) The decision of the United States Supreme Court in Murphy v National Collegiate Athletic Association has opened the door for each state of the USA to introduce laws legalising sports betting. This decision has spurred frenetic regulatory development across the United States to put in place frameworks for the licensing of sports betting and raised numerous policy issues, many of which were addressed in Australia in the decade following the landmark Betfair decision: see “Sports betting in the United States – Lessons from Australia in connection with licensing of sports betting”.

b) The introduction of stricter gambling advertising prohibitions in New South Wales, which came into effect on 2 July 2018, have significantly impacted the publication of gambling advertising by bookmakers and affiliate marketing websites, and prohibit the publication of any inducement visible to customers located in NSW: see “Rising Stakes in NSW: Everything you need to know about the overhaul of NSW Gambling Advertising Laws”.

c) The Senate Environment and Communications References Committee is conducting an inquiry into the use of loot boxes in video games, a virtual feature included in some leading video game titles and causing controversy in the gaming world. For more information on loot boxes and the regulatory treatment of loot boxes in Australia and overseas, see “Are Loot Boxes Gambling? The War over Loot Boxes Continues – Australia Joins the Battlefield”.

d) Australian Federal Parliament has introduced amendments to the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 (Cth) prohibiting the operation of lottery betting services in Australia that will come into effect on 9 January 2019: see “The end of lottery betting in Australia: Australian Federal Parliament decides”.

e) Following a number of reports that Crown limited betting options on its gaming machines, the Victoria Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation imposed a fine of $300,000 on Crown for varying buttons on its gaming machines without obtaining prior approval: see “Gaming Machines: Licence Conditions, Approvals and Variations in Playing Conditions”.

f) Earlier in the year, as a result of laws passed by Australia’s Federal Parliament, it became mandatory for Australian companies who are required to comply with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth), including those operating in the Australian gambling sector, to notify affected individuals and the Office of the Information Commissioner in the event of certain data breaches: see “Mandatory data breach notification in the Australian Gambling sector”.

We hope you enjoy this edition of our Gambling Law & Regulation Newsletter. If you have any queries relating to the issues discussed in this newsletter, or you wish to discuss, please do not hesitate to contact any member of Addisons media and gaming team.

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