New Jersey gaming regulators have introduced an official seal of approval for state-licensed online gambling sites.
On Tuesday, New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) posted a notice indicating that all state-licensed online gambling sites would henceforth display an official seal of approval. The seal (pictured enlarged as well as its position at the bottom of the BorgataCasino.com homepage) indicates that the site in question is “Licensed & Regulated” by the state.
Regulated market advocates have long championed the introduction of such a display, due to what they perceive to be confusion among the state’s residents as to which sites serving the market had the state’s official blessing, which some have credited with contributing to the regulated market’s lackluster performance to date.
Whether or not the new seal will remedy this apparent confusion will depend on whether those confused consumers know what the letters ‘DGE ‘represent, or if they can differentiate between unauthorized sites bearing similar logos with acronyms like MGA, KGC, eCOGRA and so on.
There’s also some debate if players will even notice the seal among the sites’ other icons and promos. A report released earlier this year by the Rutgers Center for Gambling Studies showed that “very few” gamblers had made use of the responsible gambling tools on state-licensed sites due to the features being hard to locate. The Rutgers group called for state-licensed sites to install a prominent RG (for ‘responsible gambling’) button, so check back in a couple years and see if you can find instructions on how to wager amongst all these new seals, buttons and banners.
The DGE’s move came on the same day that American Gaming Association (AGA) president Geoff Freeman told attendees at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) in Las Vegas that many politicians’ pejorative attitudes toward gaming were based on the popularity of “another industry that operates in the shadows.”
In April, the AGA called on state attorneys-general and new federal Attorney General Loretta Lynch to launch an all-out assault on unauthorized online gambling operators, whose “sleek, corporate presentation” Freeman claimed had convinced many customers that they were operating with the blessing of state regulators. Then, if we recall, Freeman started talking about breasts…