IMGL Magazine April 2022

NFTs and virtual digital assets

being debated must find a balance between freedom of creation to avoid overregulation, since it provokes censorship and prevents innovation, and respect for the principles framed in the Charter of Human Rights and Principles for the Internet. How are these new technologies taking part in the gaming industry? Gaming is far from immune to technological advances. In fact, online gaming is one of the economic activities that has shown the greatest growth and adaptability with the arrival of Web 4.0. Artificial intelligence and machine learning (which are intrinsic characteristics of the Web 4.0), are helpful for the development of more innovative games and systems, more accurate statistics programs and analytics, and – interestingly for the legal field – in the construction of more sophisticated firewalls to prevent illegal gaming and fraud. Thanks to the algorithms used in social media to promote certain products or services, as well as to the affiliate programs that different online gaming operators constantly innovate to generate traffic on their betting sites, people are more willing to play online. They know the offer better and trust online transactions more. On the other hand, the idea of the metaverse also includes the gaming industry and NFTs; both are present in it. For some time, various videogames have been offered as social experiences. In words of Ian Sherr, “the idea of social games is baked into the metaverse but predates it” 7 . It is easy to envision that such social interaction in the metaverse will be also extrapolated to betting activities as well.

Currently there are online casinos that award NFTs as prizes to their players, as well as other sites where you can purchase NFTs that are placed in dedicated NFT marketplaces 8 . In the same way, some operators have announced their plans to create digital casinos that are going to be part of the metaverse. These will allow players not only enter a website to place bets, but also have the experience of being in a casino in which they can interact with other people, walk around, and go from the sportsbook to the gaming tables. The gaming industry has never been afraid of technological innovation; on the contrary, it has benefited from it. For this reason, new forms of online gaming are expected to continue the expansion of the sector worldwide. Conclusions Whether we like it or not, the incorporation of technology into our daily lives is a reality. There is no turning back and no brake capable of halting the technological advance that we are facing today. The creation of the metaverse is something that is happening right now, whilst the use of cryptocurrency is regaining strength, and NFTs are becoming more valuable every day. These changes are permeating the way we understand the Internet and all the activities we carry out thanks to it. New forms of gaming are emerging, but, mostly, it is changing out understanding of the value of prizes and bets; all thanks to the places where technology is reaching. In this sense, we must embrace the changes and strive for the ethical use of technology, innovation, development, and freedom; all of this, while we aim to achieve an effective and adequate regulation.

Alfredo Lazcano chair of Lazcano Sámano SC and General Member for Mexico of the IMGL. Alfredo can be contacted at +52 (55) 4358 7774

Andrea Avedillo is Head of Legal at Lazcano Sámano, S.C. Andrea can be contacted at aab@lazcanosamano. com +52 (55) 5477 2136

7 Sherr, I. (2022, March 22). How the Game Industry Is Charging Into the Metaverse. CNET. puting/how-the-game-industry-is-charging-into-the-metaverse/ 8 For example, DraftKings Marketplace is now live at: Search&wpaffn=Google& place-welcome.

50 • IMGL Magazine • April 2022

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