The American Gaming Association, a lobbying group for land-based gambling in North America, has recently issued a new Code of Conduct that includes language specific to online gambling. The AGA has normally strayed away from the topic, but the inclusion within the Code of Conduct marks online gambling’s status as legitimate in the eyes of the AGA. The overall goal of the revised Code of Conduct is to foster dialogue between gambling stakeholders on responsible gambling.
Founded in 1994 as a lobbying organization for the land-based casino industry, the AGA has increased in size and scope ever since. The group is made up of casino owners and executives, employees, gaming product company representatives, suppliers, tribal and commercial casinos and other stakeholders. The American land-based casino business is a $240 billion industry that supports over a million jobs. The AGA’s mission statement is “to be the single most effective champion of the industry, relentlessly protecting against harmful and often misinformed public policies, and paving a path for growth, innovation and reinvestment.” While an ambitious goal, the most recent development regarding online gambling is a testament to their drive.
The first Code of Conduct was drafted in 2003 and is frequently updated to maintain consistency with industry standards, including technological and legal developments. This latest revision addresses all forms of gaming, with special mention of both online and mobile gambling. You can find online gambling mentioned in the “Pledge To Our Patrons” part of the Code, specifically under the “…To Promote Responsible Gaming” section. Premium Reno online gambling sites all include access to resources supporting responsible gaming.
It states that AGA members will have information on responsible gaming readily available on their websites. Another mention can be found in the “…To Prevent Underage Gambling and Unattended Minors in Casinos” section, where it states that AGA casino brands must communicate legal gambling age information through their web-based platforms. The updated Code also suggests more consumer protection methods that enhance transparency around casino games’ odds and payouts; transparency with casino advertising; and holding advertisers responsible for how they portray the probability of winning.
New Jersey is at the forefront of the domestic online gambling market, as they are one of 3 states to introduce legalized online gambling. When they authorized online casino and poker gaming, their Division of Gaming Enforcement took steps develop comprehensive consumer protections for both their online casino and poker sectors. In doing so, they set a precedent that the AGA is attempting to model.
The AGA began their Responsible Gaming Education Week in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and then moved on to Las Vegas. New Jersey is an interesting choice of location and showcases their newfound support of online gambling. Representatives of Caesars Entertainment and MGM Resorts were seen in attendance—another interesting point given they are 2 operators of online gambling sites.
This whole ordeal represents a change in perception from the AGA. Back in 2014, they opposed online gambling for fear of the online front stealing from land-based venues. New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware have shown that land-based casinos and online gambling sites can coexist, prompting the AGA to adopt a new point of view. Once the AGA begins lobbying as extensively for online gambling as they have for brick-and-mortar casinos, there may finally be significant progress on widespread legalization. Until then, there are legally sanctioned Reno online casinos that players can visit to enjoy online gaming.