Gambling is an everyday facet of life in Scotland and the UK. For anyone aged 18 years or over there are few restrictions on betting in a legal way. Major bookmakers or sportsbooks, casinos, bingo sites and lottery organisers operate in a highly lucrative marketplace.
Where there is competition there is usually some form of betting on the outcome, and this has led to numerous operators eyeing the growing Esports market with understandably envious eyes.
The Esports marketplace is a gigantic one with countless millions of participants. Even a small percentage gambling means huge revenues for the bookmakers.
At Scottish Esports Association (SEA) our stance is a simple one. We have no moral objections to legal betting, and have no issues with licensed legal operators who conduct themselves properly, but we actively campaign to ensure children, young and potentially vulnerable people are not exposed to any form of gambling.
Problem gambling is a growing menace in society with enormous devastating consequences for those affected, and we do everything we can to promote awareness, understanding, and a code of conduct amonmgst participants and operators.
Gambling addiction is a very serious problem at any age, but our prime concern is for young and vulnerable people. Behavioral addiction can be systemic and difficult to identify and treat, but through our ongoing education program and continuous dialogue with Government bodies and major Industry players we hope to bring about a real and lasting knowledge pool to combat problem gambling in Esports.
We have partnerships with other organisations and members that take an active role in promoting gambling and we have no problem with this providing the process is a legal one and does not involve young people and children.
The issue for us is not a moral one but one of long term legality.
We shall publish our latest report on betting activity and industry projections over the next few days.