The French Online Gaming Authority (ARJEL) has formulated advice on responsible gaming. The agency is responding to a massive surge in new online poker players (bandarqq) after sporting events were canceled due to the corona pandemic and land-based gambling and sports betting suspended. With the initiative, the authority joins other European gaming regulators that have already published similar guides.
Online Gaming Amid Coronavirus
Players can protect themselves
In its notice, the agency identified a number of measures that players can take for their own protection and referred to offers of help. ARJEL takes up the operators’ initiatives in the area of responsible gaming and continues to pay particular attention to the risks of excessive gambling. She advises players to keep control over their gambling so that it remains a leisure activity.
The supervisory authority mentions the setting of operational limits and time limits as well as the use of self-blocking offers as possible measures. She also advises players to take regular breaks and take advantage of alternative leisure activities. Players should not overestimate their expertise, stop playing as soon as “it is no longer fun”, and accept losses instead of trying to make up for them.
The authority mentions the following help offers for problem gamers in its communication:
- EVALUJEU [page in French]: A website where players can test themselves for problematic gaming behavior and see advice and offers of help.
- Joueurs Info Service: An offer of help that can be reached by phone and chat.
- SOS joueurs: A non-profit association that supports players and their families.
Warning of illegal offers
ARJEL has already approached online gambling providers with a request for increased vigilance towards problematic gaming behavior. These should deal responsibly with bonus offers and show problem players help offers.
However, because of boredom in the curfew, the offerings from illegal providers who continue to bet and play casino games would become increasingly attractive to many, the agency said.
ARJEL reminds that all websites that offer casino and slot machine games are illegal in France. When using such sites, there is a high risk that winnings will not be paid out. In addition, the risk of gambling addiction due to the lack of player protection on these pages is considerable.