Australian independent MP Andrew Wilkie has announced that he will be proposing a loot box law that will restrict the microtransactions by requiring all games with loot boxes to be rated 18+ along with more measures. Officially titled the Classification Amendment (Loot Boxes) Bill, Wilkie is hoping to introduce the legislation in mid-August.
Talking with the Daily Telegraph, Wilkie revealed his intention to bring the law, saying "Young people who are spending a lot of money on these loot boxes are being groomed for future gambling." Unlike laws in some European countries, this would not ban loot boxes entirely, instead restricting it to 18+ like gambling, and require warning labels to be put on games featuring loot boxes.
What is the history of Australia Loot Box laws and reports?
This law would follow the recommendations made by a Parliamentary Committee last year, which recommended the development of a system that would prevent the purchase of loot boxes by minors. Nor was that the beginning of these reports, as it followed several reports in 2018.
First, was a September 2018 report that said that there was little legal protection or regulation for loot boxes in the country. Written by the Australian Environment and Communications Reference Committee it linked loot boxes psychologically to gambling. Later that year, a report by the government recommended a comprehensive review of loot boxes, and other similar microtransactions (gacha?).
However, despite the official recommendations, it appears that over the past year the government failed to take action in introducing laws either due to distractions from the pandemic or other reasons no legislation had been introduced. Now, Mr. Wilkie appears poised to change that, with a system that would have game like Roblox, and FIFA rated 18+, although this isn't the first time weird age limits like this have appeared (see also: Minecraft in South Korea).
What do you think of the proposed Australian Loot Box law? Do you think Minors should be blocked from loot boxes? Let us know in the comments below.