Last year we asked "
How well does the Interactive Gambling Act work?". It
appears the answer is not so well. On 29 May 2012, the Department
for Broadband, Communications and Digital Economy released an
Interim Report outlining potential changes to the Interactive
Gambling Act 2001.
Apparently evidence indicates that the Interactive Gambling Act
2001 (IGA) is having an extremely small impact on
meeting the primary objective of reducing harm to problem gamblers
and individuals vulnerable to becoming problem gamblers.
Is liberalising online live betting and virtual gaming while
implementing harm minimisation and consumer protections the
Major changes to the online aspects of the IGA suggested by the
Legalise and licence virtual online gaming sites on the proviso
that the sites:
only offer to Australians online tournament poker, apparently
the "lowest risk" type of online gaming, and cease to
provide Australians with access to higher-risk online gaming
implement the proposed national standard on harm minimisation
and consumer protections recommended in the Interim Report.
Allow online "in play" sports wagering by
implementing platform neutral rules for "in play"
wagering (eg. the Interim Report states "applying the same
rules to online wagering as are used for wagering on the telephone
or at physical venues").
Prohibit "micro-betting", being wagering on
particular high frequency events in sports games (the Interim
Report uses the examples of "the outcome of the next ball in a
cricket match or the next point in a tennis match") through
all platforms (telephone, internet and at physical venues).
Limit sports wagering types to those approved by the
State/Territory regulatory authority and where appropriate, the
relevant sports controlling body. This is an attempt to maintain
integrity in sport (eg. prevent match fixing).
What happens now?
Submissions on the interim report are due by 25 June 2012.
Clayton Utz will continue to closely monitor developments and we
are happy to assist interested parties.
Clayton Utz communications are intended to provide
commentary and general information. They should not be relied upon
as legal advice. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular
transactions or on matters of interest arising from this bulletin.
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