The Covid-19 pandemic has had a very major effect on Sports Betting worldwide. This has mainly been due to the fact that most sporting events have gotten cancelled from March 2020. Most elite clubs were for the longest time not participating in any sporting events.
Due to this, the betting systems have suffered closure. The biggest among the Sporting activities to have suffered this negative effect has been soccer betting. For the longest time, there were no games happening at all. Many betting casinos and betting businesses had to be closed down as a measure of maintaining social distancing in line with the measures that had been put in place to safeguard public health.
Rise in Illegal Betting Sites
The Covid-19 pandemic has shaken the economy of the entire world. A very big percentage of people have either lost their jobs, or received a pay cut in their salaries. Owing to this, together with the fact that most people were idling at home during the lock down, there has been a rise in illegal gambling sites. For instance, in Singapore, there was an illegal betting site that was allowing players to bet on the daily number of Covid-19 cases. This new betting that was directly connected to the current health crisis has seen a number of consumers that use gambling as a form of betting.
People resorted to betting on other non-soccer related activities because for a better part of 2020, there were no soccer games being played. Most of them are actually greatly participating in this, as a survival tactic to make ends meet especially during such tough times. Also, most betting players in some parts of South Africa are mostly turning to simulated matches as well as e-sports. This is also because of the absence of any available betting activities related to soccer.
Regulation Agencies Against Illegal Betting
Many operators associated with betting have been issued with directives by regulation agencies. These directives include the continued discouragement of any incentives that may be put in place to attract any more addicted potential players. Addicted and problematic gamblers are also being called out through vigilance, in a bit to help them practice safer betting habits.
The Department for Digital Culture, Media and Sports in Great Britain for example, encouraged its betting operators to embrace safe messages for gambling, as a measure of protecting its players. Other countries have even gone further to ban any betting activities that may be done online, until the lock down containment measures are lifted. Most regulators for gambling are also educating and reminding their players the importance of practicing responsible betting habits during this season of the pandemic.
How the Betting Industry has Responded
As a result of the measures and directives that have been imposed on them, most countries have come up with several implementations to help practice safe betting during the pandemic. In Canada for instance, a betting company banned any promotions of its betting games from all media platforms. In Great Britain, online platforms were created on which players could access a support program through their phones. The program seeks to give an outline and guide for players for an action plan towards safe betting during the Covid-19 pandemic. The program is committed towards how the players can get monitored and receive treatment and education on pathological gambling.
The council for gaming and betting in Britain also requested for the removal of all television and radio advertisements for gambling products during the duration of the lock down. Other countries through their National Betting Associations have also requested their members to stay away from active advertisements during the lock down season.
With the pandemic having affected the betting industry, leading to the closure of most physical gambling businesses, most people have resorted to online betting. Most of these companies have turned to virtual sports as a bid to keep their customers and players engaged, while cutting costs.
Over the months, actual soccer matches and games have resumed. Players have had to be tested and taken through thorough evaluation, before being allowed to play. Games have been happening without any fans in the stadium stands. This has given great hope to the betting companies as they hope to be back on their feet soon.
It is no doubt that the 2020 Worldwide Covid-19 pandemic has greatly affected the Sports Betting industry. The great shift to online and remote betting has led to the closure of many gambling establishments. The pandemic has also presented the soccer betting (sboth) players with so much time since people have been mostly at home with not much to do. The uncertainty that has also been compounded by loss of jobs have led to more people wanting to join the betting scene as a way of survival.
This has led to several regulations being put in place to try and guide the players on how best they can indulge in responsible gambling. The regulations have also worked to ensure that the members do not get into unnecessary debts by gambling more than they are able to afford. The return of most soccer games in the past few months has however given much hope to the betting companies and their players. There is some light at the end of the tunnel.