WestLotto Welcomes EU Push to Regulate Loot Boxes
Munster (January 23, 2023) — WestLotto Managing Director Andreas Kötter welcomes the EU Parliament’s push for stricter regulation of video games and loot boxes. “This finally paves the way for a legally secure regulation. The initiative that has now been adopted goes in exactly the right direction to regulate loot boxes in video games and to protect consumers,” says Andreas Kötter.
Germany’s largest lottery provider WestLotto has long advocated clear rules in the fight against loot boxes and has repeatedly called for a broad social discussion on the subject. Andreas Kötter sees loot boxes as a “dangerous development” for the entire gaming industry. “We must act now. Otherwise, as a responsible provider, in a few years we will inherit gamblers who started out as minors – and bring problematic gaming behavior with them right away,” said Kötter recently at an event organized by the authorities.
In connection with the current initiative by the EU Parliament, Andreas Kötter emphasizes once again that it is not about bans. “Clear legal ways must now be found to protect young people and children in particular – without completely banning gaming.” The involvement of science, which recognizes the danger of loot boxes as a dangerous entry point into gambling for young people unanimously taken for granted. The renowned addiction researcher Prof. Dr. Gerhard Bühringer from the TU Dresden recently clarified in a WestLotto interview based on the popular game FIFA 23, the urgent need for regulations for loot boxes. In the case of loot boxes, for example, purchase incentives would be created via mechanisms that are prohibited in gambling. In contrast to other EU countries, there are no corresponding regulations in Germany so far.
In its decision, the EU Parliament also emphasizes the importance and positive aspects of gaming – but sees a clear need for further regulation by the legislature in order to strengthen consumer protection. Parliament sees the loot boxes and in-game purchases as a central element here. First of all, the EU Commission will deal with possible draft laws.