Happy Thanksgiving from GGB; Newsletter Returns December 4

MGM Updates Policy to Allow Pics, Vids, Streams at Tables

In today’s world, everyone has a smartphone, which means that everyone is a content creator. As such, MGM recently became the first Nevada operator to allow players to take pictures and videos while playing table games.

MGM Updates Policy to Allow Pics, Vids, Streams at Tables

In what seems to be an effort to appeal to content creators and influencers alike, MGM Resorts has announced that it is updating its policy regarding the use of mobile devices at gaming tables at its Nevada properties, allowing for players to take photos and videos so long as they don’t disturb the game at hand.

In a memo obtained by Casino.org, MGM’s Table Games Operations Department said, “The Gaming Streaming/Video/Photo Policy is launching for the Nevada properties in May 2023. The new policy is aimed at allowing our guests to take photos and videos, and, when appropriate, to share that content in real or in near real-time via social media broadcasts (‘streams’ or ‘streaming’) while limiting the risks associated with allowing photography, filming, and streaming in MGM Resorts’ gaming establishments.”

Additionally, guests can send text messages so long as they don’t impede the progress of the game, and short phone calls can be taken if the player is not involved in that specific round of play. Guests are also permitted to take pictures of their hands.

Live streaming, or broadcasting yourself live on video via social media, can also be done with the casino’s permission. This practice, which is common in other industries and lifestyles, has become increasingly popular among gaming-related channels as well.

That said, the company did clarify that players cannot place objects directly on the table “for an extended period of time.” Players are also barred from taking pictures of gaming equipment, surveillance cameras, casino staff and other players.

Lastly, players will also be barred from playing music on devices without headphones and the audio from the game itself must be muted or dubbed over.

The policy change will apply to a total of nine properties across the state—Aria, Luxor, Bellagio, Cosmopolitan, Excalibur, New York-New York, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay and Park MGM/NoMad.

On the surface, the announcement seems less than groundbreaking, but it represents a sharp turn in policy for the casino space, which has always been notoriously anal about security measures given the risk of cheating.

However, now that social media has penetrated the gambling sector, the appetite for real-world gambling content is higher than ever, and MGM was the first operator to adjust accordingly.

It is unknown at this time whether fellow high-profile operators such as Caesars and Wynn will follow suit.