On 2 February 2018, the Federal Court of Australia in Victoria handed down its judgement in the landmark case of Guy v Crown Melbourne Ltd (No 2)  FCA 36. The Court found in favour of Crown Melbourne Ltd (‘the respondent’), finding that the specific machine used by the respondent complied with regulations and was not the result of unconscionable conduct, thus clearing the respondent of any wrongdoing.
The applicant, Shonica Guy, has suffered from gambling addiction for 14 years. She sought a declaration that the Dolphin Treasure gambling machine was designed to be addictive and produce uneven results. The legal action focussed on the uneven spread of symbols needed to win across the five reels central to the game, giving players a sense that they were winning, as well as alleging that the 'return to player' (RTP) statements issued by the machine were confusing.
The applicant's action focussed in particular on the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) section 21:
Justice Mortimer, sitting alone, found that while the RTP statements on the machines may be confusing to the ordinary gambler, it would only cause a fleeting impression on the player:
She further found that the applicant did not prove any unconscionability in the conduct of the respondent, especially given the particular way the applicant framed her claim, and with regard to the fact that there was no proof of a particular individual or group of individuals who have been the victim of such alleged unconscionable conduct:
Dr Charles Livingstone, professor of public health at Monash University, predicted that this was the first of many similar actions regarding gambling regulation.:
The manufacturer of the Dolphin Treasure machines, Aristocrat Leisure, who was the second respondent in the matter,:
TimeBase is an independent, privately owned Australian legal publisher specialising in the online delivery of accurate, comprehensive and innovative legislation research tools including LawOne and unique Point-in-Time Products. Nothing on this website should be construed as legal advice and does not substitute for the advice of competent legal counsel.
Guy v Crown Melbourne Limited (No 2)  FCA 36
Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) available on TimeBase's LawOne service.
Richard Willingham, ‘,’ (The Age), 6 September 2016.
Nick Toscano, ‘,’ (The Sydney Morning Herald), 2 February 2018.
Media Release: ‘.’
FREE legislation news, delivered weekly.
Sign up now.#WeLoveLegislation Tweets
NEW information resources - great for training.