AffiliateCon panel: Respect between operators and affiliates vital during crisis

By Owain Flanders

Although player safety is of paramount importance during the current crisis, communication between affiliates and operators needs to improve, according to an AffiliateCon Virtually Live panel.

Speaking during an Affiliate and Operator panel during this week’s AffiliateCon conference, Warren Jacobs, managing director of ActiveWin, explained why he thinks those within the industry are doing a good job in addressing any concerns over customer protection.

He said: "The industry has made massive strides when it comes to the understanding of responsible gambling.

"In any meeting of any value for a reputable gambling company there will be a compliance person present, contributing to the strategy and making sure it is front of mind."

According to Jacobs, the UK industry’s decision to contribute profits from the Virtual Grand National towards the NHS demonstrates its commitment towards responsibility.

"I genuinely believe the majority of gaming companies are far more responsible for their actions," continued Jacobs. "I’d assess that the industry’s responsible gambling efforts are player-focused and with a long-term vision."

Meanwhile, Jeton Kodia, co-founder of Oddspedia, said that, while there are unfortunately those affiliates who have let the sector down by exploiting the current situation, communication needs to improve between operators and affiliates to avoid tarnishing all partners with the same brush.

Kodia said: "Some operators got into trouble because of their own marketing activities and then sent out several warnings about using the pandemic for advertising.

"In general, I completely agree that such a situation should not be exploited and there is nothing to say against it. But the wording and the threatening language in these kinds of emails is in my eyes unprofessional.

"Operators could have communicated this to affiliates with respect instead of treating everyone like criminals."

In response, Jacobs agreed with the sentiment of Kodia’s argument, commenting: "I have a lot of respect for affiliates and it needs to be treated as a partnership. Recognition of effort is vital in how much they contribute to the sector."

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