For the last decade, the UKGC has released a report on Gambling Participation in the UK which covers the UK population’s habits and perception of the industry. The most recent report (2019) is a treasure trove of information which both the traditional and crypto-gaming sectors will be trawling through so they can service their customers best, but there’s one area which will be a cause for concern for some.
That area is trust. The UKGC routinely telephone surveys the population asking do you “agree that gambling is conducted fairly and can be trusted?”. And the trend over the last decade is not a positive one. Indeed, in 2010, 48% of respondents agreed, and in terms of recent gamblers, 59% agreed. Last year this fell to 30% among all who were surveyed, but this has fallen further to 29% in the 2019 report.
The reasons for this are varied, but with a more regular occurrence of negative news stories on the industry, which are more easily shared nowadays, it’s clear the general public are being turned off from the gambling industry and being entertained elsewhere.
Online, operators have been found to focus on their bottom lines before player experience increasingly frequently.
Payouts are slow, often taking three to five days for winnings to be paid out, and these are often disputed with the backing of complicated terms and conditions drafted in favour of the house.
Transparency is falling, with casinos hiding behind bots at the front end and private servers at the back end. Players simply don’t know who they’re talking to and whether they’re getting a fair deal when they spin a wheel or roll a dice.
And scams are becoming ever more prevalent. Across the traditional online space, games are being pirated, probabilities are being fixed and exit scams, which have also been prevalent in crypto, are far too common.
It’s fair to say that the well-established fiat casino industry isn’t pulling its weight in putting the player first and this has had the gradual effect of decreasing trust across the entire gambling community, which has had a disproportionate impact on the burgeoning blockchain sector while they seek clarified regulation.
This downward trend of trust needn’t be the case and many companies and casinos out there are doing their bit to turn the tide, with the majority using blockchain technology to deliver the trust, transparency and enjoyment that players deserve and demand.
FunFair Technologies is a prime example. Having quoted this same report in its ICO back in 2017, they’ve gone above and beyond to build a technology that delivers trust to the nth degree, with the bonus of a quality gaming experience on top of it.
Using the Ethereum blockchain, and its own token and gambling chip FUN, the blockchain casino supplier has delivered a new breed of decentralised casino that deliver peace of mind to the player.
FunFair-powered casinos, including the likes of CasinoFair and King Tiger, don’t require player deposits, with both the player and house funds held in secure escrow while games are played out, and players funding games directly from their own crypto wallet. This means potential player wins are always covered and mitigates the chance of a potential exit scam by the house.
They also deliver full transparency with each and every gaming event trackable on the immutable Ethereum network. Despite this being technical to decipher, FunFair has built in an easy-to-use FairChecker mechanism to ensure that players can easily see that what they’re playing is, what they call, Guaranteed Fair.
Further backed up with a distinguished Isle of Man supplier licence and a straightforward platform that allows those without crypto knowledge to play, FunFair is slowly but surely bringing trust back to the industry via superior technology.
With blockchain technology becoming more ingrained in day-to-day life, this type of technology could rebuild trust in global gaming communities, enticing those back who may have quit gambling as a pastime, while also bringing in a new breed of player who has, to date, been deterred by the perception of a stuffy, house profit-centric casino environment that has become the status quo.
Others are following suits, with the likes of Wink on the TRON network and EarnBet on EOS also using decentralised technology to give players a more secure gaming experience. As these grow in popularity, it seems fair to say that trust will follow.
Whether the fiat-based casino establishment look to the blockchain sector and companies such as FunFair as inspiration remains to be seen, but if they don’t then trust will continue to fall, putting them in an increasingly difficult regulatory position while blockchain casinos fly the flag for a customer-first future of casino gaming.