|South Korea is the latest country to attempt to ban Internet gambling. The Korea Media Rating Board (KMRB) has suspended a large number of online game services for alleged gambling. |
Dacom Multimedia Internet Inc., a subsidiary of Dacom Corp, and four other online game service providers were punished by up service suspensions of up to 60 days and forced to revise contents for a total of 15 online games such as mahjong, poker and other card games where cash is at stake, the KMRB said .
The games have to receive a review from the KMRB for ratings.
The KMRB said the number of Internet games which have been suspended for rating classification violations has increased to 15 in October alone from only four in the period through September.
In particular, the problem has spread from adult games such as card games and slot machines to Tetris, 'yut-nori' and other youth games, the KMRB said.
The online games in question pay cash to winners directly through their bank accounts or offer equivalent payment such as Internet shopping or lottery tickets. Online games in Korea are only permitted to award 'cyber' money for games of chance.
'Before the previous rating review, we explained game systems involving cash to the KMRB, but it seemed to have misunderstood our explanation,' said an insider of Dacom Multimedia.
A KMRB official said, however, 'We consider every game that converts cyber-money to cash or gives the equivalent in gifts to players as gambling, and therefore illegal.'