According to figures released from GAMSTOP, the UK based, free, independent, national self-exclusion scheme for online gambling, more than 200,000 people have registered. This comes after a spike in numbers during the lockdown.
The new data
This is a major milestone for the scheme, they did not expect to hit this number this early in the year. Registrations in February 2021 increased 21%, that means that nearly 6,500 people choose to exclude themselves from all UK-licensed sites. We will expect to see this figure increase as the year goes on, especially after the ruling in March of 2020 that made it a licensing requirement for all online operators in the UK to be registered with GAMSTOP.
That means that esports betting sites or simply betting sites that offer esports that operate in the UK will have to offer the service to their users. Sites like Betway esports betting, Casumo, DraftKings, and more are all taking part in the scheme.
The important thing mentioned in their service is that it is not looking to outlaw or prevent gambling, instead, they seek to deal with problem gamblers head on. The team at GAMSTOP is advocating for a layered approach to tackling problem gambling. They partnered with GamCare and Gamban on the TalkBanStop campaign, this is a campaign that promotes the use of a range of practical tools and support via The National Gambling Helpline.
How to take part
You can opt into the scheme and self-exclude yourself from all UK based betting sites. All you need to do is register with GAMSTOP. You will be asked to confirm some details and select an exclusion period of six months, one year, or five years. According to data from GAMSTOP, more than 120,000 of those who have registered chose to put in place a five-year exclusion, the longest term possible.
Once your exclusion period has ended, you have the choice to remain excluded from the betting sites or reactivate your accounts. However, the scheme seems to be working, 96% of all uses eligible to reinstate their gambling privileges chose to remain excluded.
Comments from the organisation
Fiona Palmer, CEO of GAMSTOP, wrote:
“We’re pleased that GAMSTOP is serving as an effective safety net, providing crucial breathing space to those who are struggling with their gambling. With the rate of registrants continuing to rise, I would urge anybody putting self-exclusion from online gambling in place through GAMSTOP to also seek treatment. Awareness around self-exclusion schemes and blocking software has been increasing throughout the last year, and it is important that we continue to spread the message about what help is available to those who need it most.”
In the same release, Matt Blanks, 35, who is a recovering gambling addict who registered with GAMSTOP after his addiction led to him trying to take his own life, wrote:
“Signing up to GAMSTOP was a massive relief to me. I had previously had to self-exclude with each individual operator and would simply move onto the next site who I hadn’t self-excluded from. It was like a game of whack-a-mole, and I kept relapsing. GAMSTOP helped me self-exclude from all online gambling sites in one go, giving me space to clear my head, seek support and kickstart my recovery journey.”
The need for these schemes
We are advocates for responsible gambling at EsportsBets, if you are a regular reader, you already know the ups and downs that come from betting on an esports game. It is never right to throw good money after bad and end up spending yourself into debt. As much as we love writing about the newest advances in esports betting tech, this sort of news is always important.