The government is concerned about the financial vices and players’ physical and mental health associated with online gaming. Therefore, in May of last year, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) established an inter-ministerial committee to discuss issues related to promoting online gaming and developing regulatory frameworks for the industry, player protection, ease of doing business, etc.
Objectives of the Committee
The Panel is currently working on laws that will cap players’ spending on in-game purchases while playing online. The task force comprises seven people from several ministries, including the MeitY, NITI Aayog, the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Department of Revenue, and the Department for Promoting Industry and Internal Trade. To control the gaming industry, they have proposed amending the Information Technology Act of 2000.
A self-regulatory organization (SRO) for online gambling has been mandated for the industry to create. The task force’s main goal should be to address issues including the safety of female players, provide precise definitions of games of skill and chance, and create an overall “predictable & stable regulatory framework to manage the gaming sector.”
Why are spending limits necessary in online gaming?
As per reports, Online gaming has become incredibly popular over the past several years, with 390 million players active nationwide in 2021 and 500 million in 2022. It brought in close to $1.3 billion in income throughout the year. However, the industry must still contend with regulatory challenges because there are no national gaming regulations. According to various sources, the purpose of imposing spending caps is to protect players and customers.
Will not put a limit on playtime
India presently has no plans to limit the time people, including children, spend enjoying games online, differing from its neighbour China, which shocked the local gaming industry last year by enacting harsh new regulations.
The lower house of India’s parliament received a written statement from Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the country’s minister of electronics & information technology, stating that the Indian government is not considering any such plan. However, many nations worldwide have put restrictions on how much time kids can spend playing video games in place or are considering doing so. This pressure forces game companies to scale back their efforts to monetize children’s in-game purchases.
Online Gaming and Concerns
Online games have received criticism over the years for lacking sufficient safeguards and systems to stop kids from accessing & trying to play particularly violent games. As a result, such games have affected players of all age groups mentally and physically. But nowadays, a new aspect of damage is here: the financial aspect, as these games have had players spend huge amounts of money.
With the involvement of real money in the games played nowadays, it is a major concern that people are wasting huge amounts of money on them. Games offer many in-app purchases that boost your playing experience and winning chances. It cannot be ignored that such offers are found to be very lucrative, especially to the younger generation who know little about money. There have been cases in the county where children have spent their parent’s money on these games, some knowingly, whereas some unknowingly. These are just a few of the issues that online gaming possesses which can’t be ruled out, and at the moment, strict laws from the government can help deal with them.
Online gaming has become increasingly popular in India, so the government has acknowledged it as a legitimate sport. But the federal government’s task group wants to address the problems associated with online gaming in connection to the money spent in light of growing worries about gaming addiction and suicides related to gaming.