The counterargument: Betting and Gaming Council launches animation to highlight black market threat

By Tim Poole

The black market debate is most certainly heating up in gambling right now, with the Gambling Commission accusing the industry of overstating the black market's threat.

If the industry's go-to argument against increased regulation – that people will end up betting with unsafe sites – is disproved, will betting companies have to find a new way of approaching the issue?

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) is taking the opposite approach for now, creating a new animation highlighting the threat of black market operators.

Gambling With Lives recently suggested the black market threat is not a legitimate one in the UK, with regulated operators actually failing to protect their customers on a grander scale than supposed illegal brands.

But the BGC is sticking to its core message that regulated operators are indeed safe to gamble with.

Its animation has also emphasised the fact black-market operators do not contribute to legal tax revenue in the UK.

Critics, however, may suggest here that regulated operators considered safe in one jurisdiction may well be black-market operators in another jurisdiction.

The issue opens up several lines of thought, with the divisive topic being poignant given the impending review of the Gambling Act.

The question at the heart of it all is just how much of a threat the black market really poses. Does the industry have a point, or is this simply rhetoric to try and bat away tighter regulation?

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