Why Non-GamStop Casinos Will Never Join the Scheme

January 24, 2022

For several years now, the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has been strongly advocating for all of its licensed online gambling operators to join the GamStop. Many of the UK’s top online operators have joined in order to satisfy the UKGC directive. Some have even joined because they value GamStop as a viable problem gambling resource for problem gamblers.

On the other side of the fence sits a large group of UK operators that have not yet taken the plunge to subscribe as members of the GamStop scheme. Some of these operators are licensed and some are not. For the ones that are licensed, there is some risk. While the UKGC has supposedly made membership mandatory, enforcement has been an ongoing issue but fines are possible.

The question is, “why are some online gambling operators unwilling to join the GamStop scheme?”

Reasons Non-GamStop Casinos Will Never Join the Scheme

We raised the question of why online casinos would be unwilling to participate in the GamStop scheme. In our thinking, we can come up with three very good reasons and all three of them come down to $$$.

  1. Operators have to pay fees for licensing and GamStop membership. For smaller online casino operators, these fees are burdening. Some of these operators will never have the resources to pay these fees, which will serve to keep them from pursuing licenses and or subsequently having to pay subscription fees for GamStop.
  1. A lot of gamblers view GamStop as a possible restriction towards their right to gamble online. It’s doesn’t matter that the program is voluntary. It’s simply a matter of what GamStop represents to them in terms of restrictions. If something is going to threaten the ability of an online gambling operator to recruit new customers, some of those operators will avoid those somethings.
    Also, GamStop is far from a perfect program. When mistakes arise, gamblers are usually the victims of those issues. If an operator has subscribed to GamStop, that stands as an indication they fully support the program. That gives victims of GamStop mistakes cause to blame the operator, which usually results in the operator losing that gambler’s business.
    Here is an example: Gambler’s self-exclusion period has ended. They contact their favorite online casino operator to have their account reactivated. The operator has a technical problem with the activation process. Regardless of who is to blame for the problem, who do you think gets the blame? Yes, it’s almost always the operator, and they lose Gambler A as a customer.
    Here’s the irony. Licensed UK operators not on GamStop are subject to punishment if they don’t subscribe to the program. That punishment usually comes in the form of fines. A lot of these non-GamStop operators are more fearful of losing money due to lost customers than they are of having to pay fines. Perhaps, they know the UKGC has been slow to enforce the mandate.
    Remember, many of the casinos not on GamStop listed here – https://www.nongamstopwager.com/casinos-not-on-gamstop/ have a lot of customers who are intentionally trying to avoid their GamStop self-exclusion. As online gambling service providers, the casinos are just trying to give customers what they want. These operators feel like making sure responsible adults who change their minds about their gambling issues have a place to go.
  1. Rogue operators are always trying to avoid scrutiny. On rare occasions, there are rogue operators out there doing things they should not be doing. They don’t want to be licensed or forced to join any programs because they are trying to fly undetected under the radar out of the view of regulators.
    Since these operators do exist, it’s incumbent on you to do your homework. If you are going to use an online gambling site that is not licensed and not on GamStop, you have to make sure their reputation is beyond reproach. If you wanted to play it safe, a far better option would be to avoid these kinds of operators at all costs. You have a right to be afraid of online gambling operators that are afraid of scrutiny by you or the UKGC.

If you can’t find a UK operator that makes you feel safe and secure, you might want to go abroad with your gambling activities.


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