As one of the world’s largest games and gaming companies, Aristocrat is proud to lead by example and maintain a strong commitment to responsible game play in the community and online. This is consistent with our vision for a gaming and hospitality sector that is vibrant, socially and economically sustainable and welcomed in the communities in which we operate.
We work closely with our customers, regulators and other stakeholders to ensure policies address problem gambling and support problem gamblers, without unduly impacting the overwhelming majority of people who gamble recreationally and responsibly.
We invest in technologies that encourage responsible gambling and game play and continue to fund independent research in collaboration with regulators as well as providing support to research being conducted independently by the National Centre for Responsible Gaming, Clubs Australia and University of Sydney Gambling Treatment and Research Clinic to improve gambling policy and best practice standards throughout the industry.
Aristocrat has an RG Working Group whose remit is to develop and oversee a number of RG initiatives underway as part of our sustainability program. This group comprises members of Aristocrat’s marketing, game design, sales, compliance, communications, legal and government relations departments.
1. Our Policy
- Aristocrat supports RG measures that:
- Are proven to reduce problem gambling without unduly impacting the overwhelming majority of recreational gamers, or limiting their choices, amenity and enjoyment;
- Foster player empowerment;
- Are able to be implemented with a high degree of integrity, both from a technological and legal perspective;
- Are affordable and viable for operators and ultimately players and consistent with the vision of a sustainable, vibrant gambling industry; and
- Are outlined in technical standards.
These commitments apply to everything we do, including the design of our games.
2. Awareness and education for players
We aim to provide players with information to enable them to make informed decisions when gaming. In 2018, we commenced development of player-specific information that goes beyond what is required by regulation. This content aims to assist players in understanding how gaming machines work, and includes information relating to return to player, random number generators and less than bet wins. We intend to make this player-specific information available in 2019, subject to the required regulatory approvals.
3. Awareness and education for employees
It’s important to Aristocrat that our employees are well informed and educated in relation to responsible game play.
Understanding that a small percentage of people develop problems with gambling which can impact their lives, Aristocrat’s Playing our Products Responsibly Policy ensures all employees understand the nature of gambling and the options available in the event they may have a problem with gambling. We want to ensure our employees are:
- aware of their chances of winning on our products;
- provided with guidance on how to detect signs of problem gambling; and
- provided access to appropriate resources in the event they believe they or someone in their family is developing a gambling problem.
To foster integrity at work and play, we provide each new employee with information about RG during their induction with Aristocrat, including the Global Employee Handbook and Aristocrat’s Code of Conduct which was most recently updated in May 2018. The Global Employee Handbook and Code of Conduct outlines Aristocrat’s position on RG.
This year, our RG Working Group commenced development of an online induction and e-learning course focused on RG. The course is on target for a 2019 launch and all global employees of Aristocrat will be required to undertake and successfully complete the course.
In late 2017, Aristocrat recognised Australia’s Responsible Gambling Awareness Week and in August 2018, we partnered with the American Gaming Association (AGA) to raise awareness of and formally recognise Responsible Gaming Education Week. In October 2018, we continued our support for Australia’s Responsible Gambling Awareness Week and Responsible Gambling Harm Awareness Week, raising employees’ awareness of RG through targeted communications. We also supported the NSW Government’s Office of Responsible Gambling Strategic Plan launch at Parliament House during Responsible Gambling Awareness Week. We believe support of these external initiatives gives us an opportunity to demonstrate to our employees and other stakeholders the importance of year-round RG awareness and the industry’s commitment to promoting RG.
4. Our engagement with industry associations
This year, Aristocrat became a member of the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG), a US organisation dedicated to funding research that is aimed at increasing understanding of gambling disorder and youth gambling and finding effective methods of treatment for the disorder.
The NCRG helps individuals and families affected by gambling disorder by supporting peer-reviewed, scientific research into gambling disorder, encouraging the application of new research findings to improve prevention, diagnostic, intervention and treatment strategies and increasing public education about gambling disorder and responsible gaming.
We look forward to becoming involved and contributing to the important work of NCRG, including policy development, frameworks and directives.
Aristocrat is also a member of The American Gaming Association (AGA), the premier national trade group representing the US casino industry. AGA members include commercial and tribal casino operators, as well as gaming machine suppliers and other organisations affiliated with the gaming industry. The AGA’s mission is to achieve sound policies and regulation governing gaming in the US.
In 2018, Aristocrat continued to be involved with the AGA’s Responsible Gaming Task Force. The Task Force focuses on elevating RG as a key priority for the industry, solidifying AGA and its members as the leading advocate for policy developments that are favorable to consumer protection and innovation.
Aristocrat is also a member of the Australasian Gaming Council (AGC), reflecting a desire to promote a more proactive national approach to industry led responsible gambling initiatives. AGC is a national industry body that supports a sustainable gambling industry providing entertainment and economic benefits while promoting gambling education, RG awareness, quality gambling research and evidence-based policy. The AGC was established in June 2000 and its members comprise licensed operators, wagering providers, technology providers and manufacturers, hotels and casinos.
Aristocrat is also a member of the International Social Games Association (“ISGA) and through our Digital Oversight Working Group, we proactively support the work of ISGA including research in relation to online gaming and social gaming.