The GambleAware Behavioural Insights Team considered what types of influences might lead to risky play online. They did a broad review of gambling data and trends and interviewed regular gamblers alongside professionals working with people with gambling disorders.
What Gamblers Said
Gamblers told researchers that it was especially easy to become absorbed when playing on online casinos and gambling sites. They also said that because they were paying via the internet, the money they were spending often didn’t feel ‘real’.
This feedback reinforced the conclusion that some simple behavioural messages might help at risk gamblers to get back control and set their own limits.
Thinking About How You Gamble
The GambleAware research team went on to look at data from four major online casinos in order to further analyse whether certain gamblers could be matched as having high scores on the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI).
The PGSI is basically a simple self-assessment quiz which measures at-risk behaviour in gambling. Generally, the higher the stakes, and the more unpredictable the gambling behaviour, the more likely an individual is to have a high PGSI score.
GambleAware went on to work with three major online betting providers to test the effectiveness of sending accessible messages about risky gambling behaviours directly to those gamblers who had a high PGSI score. Simple, targeted information suggested that they check out responsible gambling tools and support.
The messages successfully worked to increase the number of players setting deposit limits or a cooling off period for themselves. The result is clear. Operators and individuals can make a conscious effort to increase awareness of responsible gambling, encourage more responsible behaviour, and encourage safe playing for fun.