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‘1XBet’ luring Nepali youth into an illegal web

KATHMANDU: As soon as the news of open promotion of 1X Bet was published in Nepal Press, it has been found that the web of ‘illegal betting’ created by it is challenging the government. Along with the issue of ‘Jalan’ and ‘The Cartoonz Crew’ openly promoting betting, Nepal Press has received information that there are many such promoters and they are promoting it through various means.

It has come out that the Cyprus based company 1X Bet’ has taken advantage of Nepal’s unemployed population, illegally promoting betting by targeting the age group that enjoys YouTube and Tiktok. Not only Jalan and The Cartoonz Crew, but YouTubers like ‘Ming Serap’, ‘Rising Star Nepal’ and Ganesh GD, and Tiktokers like ‘Binay’, ‘Prashant’, ‘Prakash Rai’ and ‘Shristi Shrestha’ are also openly advertising betting. 

Despite being against Nepal’s laws, the main reason due to which Nepal is being taken as a major market for betting is youth unemployment. “1X Bet does not advertise on YouTube channels that are viewed by relatively older people, but only on youth-targeted channels,” the source told Nepal Press. “Jalan, Cartoonz Crew, Ming Sherap are Youtubers followed by the youth, and the advertisements in these channels attract their attention.”

The content creators chosen for the advertisement also show that 1X Bet is targeting a certain group by realizing that the rising population of youth on the internet and social media in Nepal is a consequence of unemployment. 

“Many young people in Nepal are unemployed. Realizing that these unemployed young people spend a lot of time on YouTube/Tiktok, 1X Bet has made such content creators a medium for advertising,” said a source, “If unemployed youth are getting an ‘option’ to earn money from home, they will definitely click on it. This is the mindset 1X Bet is basing its advertisement on.” 

The content of the advertisement on their channels by Saroj Adhikari of Cartoonz Crew, Ganesh GD and Rising Stars, begins by saying that if you want to earn money by staying at home during the lockdown. It is clear that this is an attempt to take advantage of the nationwide stagnation caused by the coronavirus and the consequent increase in unemployment, using the sentiments of unemployed youth to lead to illegal activities. 

This way, Nepalese have been the means of committing illegal acts.  “1X Bet entered Nepal towards the end of 2018. Before that, there was no option for payment from Nepal on 1X Bet’s website,” the source said. “If you look today, there seem to be transactions using e-Sewa, Khalti and even NIC Asia Bank. This clearly shows that 1X Bet has an active network in Nepal as well and it is working smoothly.”

This way, the ‘deal’ of YouTubers/TikTokers for promoting this web site has been done through email. “There is no dialogue for this kind of advertising, just email. 1XBet bets on a social media celebrity who is less likely to say no, and who is a social media celebrity that young people particularly like.”

It has been found that children have also been included in the promotion of 1XBet, which is gradually also making Tiktok a means of advertisement, besides YouTube. A young boy with the username Binay-XLS on Tiktok said that he was making money from 1XBet by just watching football, adding that 1XBet is also the largest company in the world.

He further said, “You can win real money by betting on sports and games. And if you deposit by using my promo code, you can get a 100% bonus on the first deposit.” 

Similarly, a vacancy itself has been opened for an ‘affiliator’ from an account named PrakashRai210. Similarly, a teenager who has nearly two hundred thousand followers on TikTok has admitted that she is earning money by betting on 1XBet during the lockdown and has suggested the same to others. If the reactions there are also looked at, the effectiveness of such advertisements seems evident. 

As of the time of this writing, of the 147 people who commented on the 1XBet promotional TikTok, which has been viewed 1,99,900 times, are looking for more information on 1XBet. Hence, one can easily guess its effectiveness and how a betting network is being woven by 1XBet.

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