the Ministry of Consumption prepares restrictions on its access

the Ministry of Consumption prepares restrictions on its access

From the Ministry of Consumption they had already warned that the measure would arrive and the first draft is already ready. Spain has presented the specific law to regulate the loot boxes and among the main novelties is the restriction by minors access to this type of content.

How will this goal be achieved? With a registration through the DNI and the control method will be carried out with “a document verification system” by the companies and “on a voluntary basis for these entities, with a biometric identification system”. If this first barrier is not overcome, it will be impossible for the user to get a loot box.

However, the question of how this requirement will be carried out effectively remains on the table. If we look at platforms like Google Play, we can see that it is detailed that “if you are of the minimum age, you can verify your age with an official identification document that proves it“, although using a credit card is offered as an alternative method.

However, it also states that “if you’re not old enough to manage your own account, you can ask your parent to set up supervision from their Google account so you can continue to use your account.” We will see if this and the rest of the platforms must modify their age monitoring systems for a law that is still a draft.

On the other hand, for the Government of Spain, loot boxes are Random Reward Mechanisms (MAR) and will coincide with the definition of “when the activation of the reward mechanisms cost money or other virtual objects acquired with money directly or indirectly”.

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In addition, two methods can be activated to avoid excessive spending in loot boxes. One of them will be self-exclusion, which will mean “the temporary suspension of the activation of random reward mechanisms (…), for a period of no less than three months and no more than five years.” It could even produce “the eventual return of amounts of money or virtual objects.”

In turn, the companies will have the obligation to “offer their users the possibility of voluntarily limit spending on loot boxes. Scheduled sessions may also be established in which limits will be established prior to spending money and time spent.

In the case of advertising, physical and online advertising will be prohibited on websites not related to video games. Broadcasting on television and radio will be prohibited throughout the day except for the period between one and five in the morning. An additional obligation is that the companies will have to offer truthful information about the possibilities of obtaining the prize.

Nor does the Ministry of Consumption forget that companies must transfer information about “the risks arising from thoughtless or compulsive practice in the activation” of loot boxes, their method of operation, parental control systems or the prohibition of their use by minors.