The affiliate landscape in the iGaming industry changed dramatically in 2017 when the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) introduced new compliance legislation. The actions of UK regulators had a dramatic effect on the global iGaming market, as many other countries seized the opportunity to update and amend their own legislation.
These changes have led to much more scrutiny and accountability for affiliates. Websites, social media posts and other content are under the spotlight more than ever before. In some cases, operators have had to sever ties with affiliates unwilling to change the way that they generate new business. For others, it has been a rare opportunity to thrive in a marketplace which encourages responsibility and fairness.
Regulation has traditionally been used to protect state monopolies, prevent crime and collect taxes. However, more recently there has been a great emphasis on social responsibility. Minors who are under the legal age to gamble and vulnerable players who may be more susceptible to problem gambling are the two groups of most concern. If these two groups are not adequately protected, then online gambling can present significant societal issues.
This in turn can have a negative impact on the industry and prevent future growth and longevity. Regulation could arguably be considered a series of checks and balances, which encompasses operators, affiliates, players and interested third parties. It is our opinion that regulation is wholly necessary for the future success of us all in the global iGaming industry.
Changes in regulation will ultimately hurt some affiliate businesses. In some cases, there will be affiliates that leave the iGaming marketplace altogether. What this means for other affiliates is that they can benefit from opportunities that were previously not available.
Being compliant is often time-consuming but not necessarily difficult: it just means that there will be practices that are no longer acceptable to use. For many this will remove the fear that rogue elements will take away their opportunity to build their businesses in a prosperous marketplace.