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A Blog About FTC regulations and happenings

You Got Loot? FTC Examines In-Game Purchases
August 8, 2019

You Got Loot? FTC Examines In-Game Purchases

By: Whitney Fore
The FTC held three panels on Wednesday, August 7, 2019, that centered on one topic: loot boxes earned or purchased during online game play. It’s clear from the selection of panelists and the questions posed by FTC staff that the FTC is on high alert about potential consumer protection issues surrounding these in-game purchases.  If the name of the game (pardon the pun) on Wednesday was transparency, however, the FTC received some welcome news from industry leaders. Loot boxes are containers of randomized digital content holding items with varying degrees of in-game value that can either be earned through in-game play or purchased using in-game or real-world currency.  Today’s gaming industry is rife with “freemium” games and games for purchase that are about the same price as those video game cartridges of yesteryear (adjusting for inflation).  Gaming development budgets, however, have skyrocketed to generate the photorealistic graphics and endless gameplay that consumers have come to expect.  To bridge the gap, developers are increasingly relying on in-game purchases, of which loot... Read more

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