The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) Gaming Commission has called for the government to develop a common framework for SRBs to follow to ensure uniform compliance and transparency.
Last month, before the draft regulations were released, IAMAI said it would be best suited to become a self-regulatory body for the gaming sector. But that proposal was rejected by the government earlier this month, with Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of Electronics and Information Technology, ruling that the industry group will not be allowed to become a self-regulatory organization and that the SRB will have to move away from controlling the game. said. intermediary.
WinZo, a Delhi-based online gaming platform that offers real money games, has called for the coexistence of multiple SRBs (Self-Regulatory Bodies) in its filings with Meity.
“Our concerns regarding the composition of an SRO (or SRB) for the regulation of the online gaming industry are primarily due to the inherent prejudices between SRO regulatory functions and their members, market manipulations, issuers and shareholders, Conflicts of interest arise from conflicts of interest: Aside from having certain neutral members, SROs were also envisioned to necessarily consist of industry players. The recognition of the potential for SRO has alleviated our initial concerns.”
For the proposed self-regulatory body, IAMAI touted that at least one member would be a former Supreme Court or High Court judge “for the SRB to perform adjudication functions.”
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According to Meity’s proposal, the SRB will include members from the online gaming, sports and entertainment sectors. the online gaming industry; the fields of psychology, medicine or consumer education; and information and communication technology. It also suggested that the central government nominate members with experience in public policy, administration, law enforcement, or finance.Mumbai-based Games24x7, which operates the RummyCircle and My11Circle platforms, said the government has adjudication authority oversight. Requested to have an institution. SRB. “Such a mechanism would ensure a strong adjudication process for the smooth governance of the industry,” it said.
Until a separate appeals body is established, it proposes to authorize the existing Complaints Appeals Board formed under the IT Brokerage Regulations to deal with complaints raised by online gaming platforms.
Meity released amendments to its IT intermediary rules earlier this month to ensure that online games are offered in compliance with Indian law and users are protected from potential harm.
The government initially gave stakeholders until 19 January to make proposals and comments, but later extended the deadline to 25 January. In its draft regulations, the government proposed a self-regulatory mechanism, mandatory verification of players, and a physical address in India for online games. enterprise.
The regulation also proposes that self-regulatory bodies be registered with the ministry. The SRB registers games of online game brokers who are members and meet certain criteria. We will also resolve complaints through our grievance mechanism.
IndiaTech, a Gurgaon-based start-up industry association, is proposing a three-tiered dispute resolution framework, rather than the two-tiered one proposed in the draft rules. “The supervisory authority could be constituted by a self-regulatory body as the Grievance Appellate Gaming Council, composed of professionals with relevant knowledge and experience in the online gaming industry,” it said.
“There is a risk of forum shopping by intermediaries,” said IndiaTech, as the regulations allow for one or more self-regulatory bodies. “Oversight bodies can mitigate or control the risks of forum shopping and ensure that the powers and functions of self-regulatory bodies are not compromised,” it added.
In addition to the structure of the SRB, stakeholders are also calling for changes to how online game registrations are conducted with self-regulatory bodies.
Games24x7 proposes a two-step registration process. “SRB can register online games in two stages: provisional registration and permanent registration. Allows you to run certain technical tests, only after running the game for a certain amount of time.
WinZo has expressed concerns about the extent of authority granted to SRB for the registration of online games, including its determination that online games are skill games.
“In our experience, such pre-registration is likely to compromise the confidentiality of information that needs to be submitted for evaluation/certification and may lead to IP (intellectual property) exposure. It’s the most important asset a game developer owns and protected by patents.A potential delay can also erode a first-mover advantage,” said WinZo co-founder One Saumya Singh Rathore told ET.
The All India Gaming Federation, which represents a number of online gaming platforms, said in its filings, companies should be allowed to self-certify new games based on a prescribed checklist of requirements, after which registration should take place. He said he could apply. 90 days. This gives game developers a first-mover advantage when developing their own products.
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