It is important to involve all stakeholders in the advancement of responsible gambling standards & best practices. We work with all sides to ensure that robust consumer protections continue to be a priority.The Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) in Ontario, Canada has told sister site Casino Shield some top ways players can stay safe at the online tables.
The information was part of a wide-ranging interview on all things responsible gambling but also works as a great primer for new players, especially when paired with the Gambling 101 guide recently issued by iGaming Ontario (iGO).
“When all sides work together, it creates a more holistic, public health approach to minimizing gambling harms and protecting players and communities,” Responsible Gambling Council Director of Standards and Accreditation, Tracy Parker, told Casino Shield:
“RGC employs a 360 approach to preventing gambling harm. It is important to involve all stakeholders in the advancement of responsible gambling standards and best practices. We work with all sides to ensure that robust consumer protections continue to be a priority,” Parker added.
At its core, the RGC — which has been working in the industry for over 40 years, safeguarding players from gambling harm — wants to remind online players that gambling should always remain fun.
“There are many safety tips, but basically, make sure playing stays fun.” Parker goes on the break down the ways players can sense check this by:
- Learn more about how the games work and about tools that can help manage your play
- Play with money you can afford to lose; use tools to keep you on track
- Don’t gamble when depressed or intoxicated
- Don’t gamble when you’re upset or stressed
- Limit your alcohol and/or cannabis intake while gambling
- Manage your time and take frequent breaks; use tools to help with that
- Don’t try to win back what you’ve lost
- Balance gambling with other recreational activities and priorities in your life
- Seek help or make a change if gambling is causing you concern
For more information on how to identify problem gambling behavior read our in-depth guide.
From a player’s perspective, the integration of responsible gambling tools on online poker, casino, or sportsbook is a clear and effective way that it can manage their behaviors by essentially adding safeguards to the player experience. These responsible gambling tools oftentimes take the form of:
- Deposit Limits
- Time Limits
- Loss Limits
- Game Type Limits
- Cool Off Periods/ Self Exclusion
The key is offering a variety of tools to players and making sure the tools are accessible and easy to use. When we drive our cars, we don’t have to choose between seatbelts, guardrails, airbags, speed limits, etc.When asked what the RGC thought was the most effective RG tool in a player’s arsenal the response reflected the holistic 360 approach they take when looking at the broad responsible gambling picture.
“RG Tools can take many forms: various time and money limit-setting tools, risk assessments, play history, self-exclusion, blocking features, cool-off periods, marketing options, etc. The most effective tool will depend on many things including the player risk level. Different kinds of players need different kinds of tools and information at different times in the player journey. The key is offering a variety of tools to players and making sure the tools are accessible and easy to use. When we drive our cars, we don’t have to choose between seatbelts, guardrails, airbags, speed limits, etc,” Parker added.
Players will see that in order to have launched in the Ontario regulated online gambling market, all operators will have to offer a comprehensive suite of responsible gambling tools, baked into the client.
All tools will be available at registration and at any time after that as part of the player’s journey. These responsible gaming tools include:
- Deposit Limits: These allow players to set a maximum amount they can deposit on the site, usually further filtered down by day, week, or month. Once the user hits that limit, they won’t be able to deposit any more funds into their account until that time period lapses and a new one begins.
- Loss Limits: These allow a player to set the maximum amount they are prepared to lose — once this figure is hit, play will be stopped.
- Time Limits: These allow a player to set a maximum amount of time they are able to stay on a site. Some operators even break this out by game type so that a player can set a maximum amount of time they are allowed to stay at one game.