On August 7, 2019, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will host a public workshop to examine consumer protection issues related to the sale of “loot boxes” in video games.
For those unfamiliar with the phrase, “loot boxes” are often in-game rewards that players can buy that typically contain a random assortment of virtual “loot” items for players to use in the game (e.g., to help them succeed or to customize their in-game avatars). Although loot boxes contain virtual rewards, they are purchased with real money and are becoming an increasingly popular revenue source for game developers. However, class action lawsuits, U.S. senators, and the FTC have questioned the techniques used to market loot boxes in video games and whether there is a risk that minors can become addicted or otherwise be exploited by these in-game offers.
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