A better way to game

Mar 1, 2024

The call to arms of NSPCC’s inaugural Game Safe Festival was ‘to help build a safer online world for young people’. Our COO Joanne Lacey participated in a roundtable of publishers & developers, platforms, industry bodies, eSports teams and influencers to play and act for a better way to game.

Earlier this month I was privileged to be invited to take part in an industry roundtable during UK charity NSPCC’s Game Safe Festival. It was part of a week-long event series celebrating everything that’s best about the world of gaming: the community and creativity, with the goal to collaborate on tackling child safety risks in gaming.

The event had been a while in the planning, with the UK Government’s Online Safety Act providing the regulatory backdrop along with research commissioned by NSPCC into Child Safeguarding and Immersive Technologies to outline the risks particularly around VR, AR and the metaverse  – all of which cross into gaming.

But it’s the statistics that show why such an initiative is so important:

  • 68% of young people have experienced offensive or mean comments from other players.
  • 78% of young people who play online games report receiving friend requests from people they don’t know.
  • 60% of young people say they want to learn more about how to avoid strangers sending them requests in online games.
  • 55% say they have been let down by in game trades; 49% say they have been cheated out of money or items they have won within an online game.

The event was attended by global publishers and platforms (with two notable mobile exceptions). The NSPCC and Childline teams outlined the safeguarding landscape and were followed by a refreshingly open panel discussion where the games industry was represented by Roblox’s Senior Director of Community Safety & Civility and Lucid Games’ Community & Marketing Lead. 

It was in three roundtable session where everyone came together to take action. 

These interactive sessions ran under Chatham House Rules (so no details to share here, sorry!) to discuss what are the most pressing issues related to child safety in games. We talked about the barriers to mitigating these issues and risks and what as an industry we can do to tackle challenges head-on, recognizing we can’t simply wait for regulation to catch up with technology and social shifts. Age verification and AI misuse were up there as you would expect, but also things like inappropriate ads in mobile games and trying to minimize the data collected about children.

You may ask what has this got to do with an InGamePlay platform? Well lots. 

AdInMo’s player-first, privacy-first approach to in-game advertising means creating a better player experience is at the core of our business. It’s essential as an ecosystem we do everything we can to create a safe environment for all audiences. From concerns about personal data sharing to the pressure of spending money in-game; education around the risks and greater transparency towards making all aspects of gaming safer by design, we all have our role to play. 

NSPCC’s event underlines their commitment and recognition the important role games have to play as a key community in the lives of young people. Their mission is to protect children, but they can’t do this alone. Each and every single one of us that make up our amazing games ecosystem has to play their part to ensure children are safe when they play games. The commitment and proactivity throughout the workshop was clear. That now needs to translate into action. 

Joanne Lacey



Rewarding players and privacy is rewarding

Rewarding players and privacy is rewarding

From non-intrusive in-game brand ad formats to rewarded play discussion led by Felix Braberg Co-founder, two & a half gamers explored the latest thinking in the rewarded space to better understand the innovations and requirements for monetization & retention....

read more
Share This