The UK Gambling Commission has decided to prosecute two men for gambling in the first case involving betting on video games. According to a BBC report, Craig Douglas and Dylan Rigby have been charged with promoting a lottery and advertising unlawful gambling. The Gambling Commission is watching the growing concept of video game gambling and worries that children will be increasingly involved.
Douglas and Rigby both create videos on YouTube related to EA Sports' FIFA series, with Douglas producing content under the pseudonym Nepenthez. The case will resume at Birmingham Magistrates Court on October 14. Douglas has already offered up some commentary on the case via Twitter.
This case follows Valve's major crackdown on the global gambling marketplace involving Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. The crackdown followed two lawsuits aimed at various CS: GO skin gambling sites like CSGO Lounge, CSGO Speed, CSGO Lotto, and OPSkins, alleging that Valve was knowingly allowing an online gambling market. One of the lawsuits was specifically about these sites allowing minors to gamble. Those cases involved several prominent YouTubers, some of whom actually owned one of the sites in question.
It highlights an ongoing problem in online video content creation, one that affects any new media. The moral and ethical dilemmas are just starting to be addressed community-wide and legal authorities have yet to really understand how to monitor or deal with bad actors. It will be fixed with time and ongoing effort, but for now, many YouTubers and streamers are raking in the money, some with either poor or illegal actions.