New laws regarding Internet access – especially to online casinos and poker rooms – went into effect on Sunday, though the wording of the law seems to be purposely vague and ill-defined.
Regarding Internet gambling in China, the regulation was reportedly designed with protection of minors in mind and says that “online games targeting minors must be free of content that can lead to the imitation of behavior that violates social morals and the law” – no further explanation as to the definition of “violates social morals” is provided.
The new Chinese gambling laws also call for companies to limit the amount of time a minor can play on the games “to prevent addiction. Again, however, no descriptions of specific measures or defining of specific time limits was provided. China currently allows for “Internet-addicted youth” to be placed in special camps at the behest of their parents in order to break the gaming habit.
According to the official China Internet Network Information Center, over 420 million Chinese citizens regularly go online. The value of the market for Internet betting in China is estimated to be worth about $800 million annually.
After a summer devoted to breaking up sophisticated illegal online gambling operations in China and Taiwan, the government fashioned the new law in late July to take effect on August 1.