In an effort to draw attention to the need for Central regulation, the AIGF adopts external audit procedures. Already serving a booming market with infinite potential, desi online entertainment and real-money gaming industries need legislative support to fight off unscrupulous and illegal operators.
Self-Regulation Already the Norm, yet Gaming Startups Volunteer for More Regulation Desi tech startups have largely weathered the challenging last couple of years and many have even grown stronger. Held back by legal uncertainty, gaming platforms and developers are facing global and illegal competition for the attractive Union market.
The All India Gaming Federation (AIGF), the apex industry body for online and mobile gaming, has recently launched yet another attempt to promote and evoke clear legislation for the sector. The federation enrolled the notable international consultancy firm Arthur D. Little (ADL) to carry out independent audits of eligible member companies.
The Mobile Premier League (MPL) is reportedly the first tech giant to pass rigorous assessments in 7 crucial service and management areas. A number of gaming businesses are expected to follow suit. Industry stakeholders insist that over 400 million gamers, casual mobile players and fans of online lottery ticket sales in India can enjoy safer gaming if a more formal regulation is in place.
ADL will evaluate user verification, player protection, responsible gaming policies and mechanisms, financial transparency and security, conflict resolution, advertising standards, legal and game tech compliance. Desi gaming companies and service providers, for the most part, adhere to self-regulation and common industry policies. The new compliance audit aims to lend a hand to legislators in taking these to a Central level.
Lotteries Still a People Favorite
As much as online gaming and digital entertainment have evolved, government lotteries remain the top choice for most Indians, in-depth surveys have found. In pre-pandemic years, legal lottery has brought in as much as Rs 50,000 crore in public revenues annually. A sizable influx of finances often used to fund welfare programs and other State projects.
Media reports estimate, moreover, that by transitioning stably to online operations, legal lotteries can at least double in size. While almost 10 lakh Indians used to rely on the lotto industry for a living, many have suffered the competition with illegal and offshore operators.
Thus, the absence of government regulation for online lotteries, in the end, puts an important industry at a disadvantage. Experts remind that, if regulated well on a national scale, lotteries can help promote responsible gaming, meet public objectives and generate tech-based employment.
Covid-induced lockdowns might have damaged many businesses which rely on physical presence and direct contact. Online and digital entertainment industries, on the other hand, have an incredible opportunity to raise Bharatâ€™s status as a global player and a high-profile attracting the best tech services and companies.
Online gaming environments and distribution does not seem to have an alternative for many market niches. It is easy to see why Indian policy makers cannot afford to ignore these trends much longer.