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Integrity & Internet Sports Gambling European Gaming and Betting Association European Parliament Brussels, Belgium Howard J. Shaffer, Ph.D., C.A.S. February.

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Presentation on theme: "Integrity & Internet Sports Gambling European Gaming and Betting Association European Parliament Brussels, Belgium Howard J. Shaffer, Ph.D., C.A.S. February."— Presentation transcript:

1 Integrity & Internet Sports Gambling European Gaming and Betting Association European Parliament Brussels, Belgium Howard J. Shaffer, Ph.D., C.A.S. February 17, 2009

2 Richard LaBrie Debi LaPlante Sarah Nelson Anja Schumann Ziming Xuan John Kleschinsky Allyson Pellar Leslie Bosworth Ingrid Maurice Sara Kaplan Gabriel Caro Chris Reilly Chrissy Thurmond Acknowledgments bwin Interactive Entertainment, AG The National Center for Responsible Gaming The Las Vegas Sand Corporation Iowa Department of Public Health Nevada Department of Public Health Missouri Port Authority National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism National Institute on Mental Health National Institute on Drug Abuse Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling Robert Wood Johnson Foundation University of Nevada, Las Vegas


4 Objectives Review the meaning of INTEGRITY Show how studying actual gambling behavior rather than self-reports provides insight into whether Internet gambling compromises integrity Consider some of the findings from our Internet-based research

5 Oversimplifying Integrity: Three Primary Types Self-integration - integrating parts of an individual or group into a harmonious whole Individual or group identity - consistency of commitment Representing personal virtue or moral purpose – holding these virtues limit the set of commitment options for an individual or group

6 Integrity & the Internet The Internet has integrity when: Technological components have consistency of design & function (integration) You get what you pay for without deception (honest commerce) Internet use will not compromise the public health What people do on the Internet reflects their individual commitments, motivations, & objectives

7 Internet Gambling Might Challenge Internet Integrity Population challenge Some observers have suggested that gambling will compromise the integrity of society, in general, and families, in particular Individual challenge Some researchers have suggested that the Internet, in general, and Internet gambling, in particular, will compromise the integrity of Internet users and Internet gamblers by encouraging disordered gambling

8 Population Challenge: Speculating About Exposure …current data shows that when gambling activities are legalized, economies will be plagued with 100% to 550% increases in the numbers of addicted gamblers (probably within one to five years, but almost certainly within fifteen years). John Warren Kindt The Economic Aspects of Legalized Gambling Activities, Drake Law Review, 43, 1994, p.59.

9 Evidence about the Population Challenge Prevalence of gambling disorders has been relatively stable during the past 35 years, despite dramatic increases in the growth of gambling exposure and access. In the United States, the rate of serious gambling disorders was 0.7% during the middle 1970s. Today researchers estimate the rate to be about 0.6%.

10 If they dont depend on true evidence, scientists are no better than gossips. Herbert Flowerdew to Fred Fairly, in The Gate of Angels, ch. 3 (1990). Penelope Fitzgerald (British author)

11 Internet Gambling Evidence Before 2007: No Studies of Actual Internet Gambling Behavior

12 Internet Gambling Evidence After 2007: Studies of Actual Internet Gambling Behavior Begin to Appear

13 Internet Gambling Division on Addictions Collaborative

14 8 month data set bwin Longitudinal Cohort Median Behaviors Total Sample and Most Involved Losers (1%) MeasureTotal (39,719)Top B&L* (144) Duration116 (of 244)219 (of 244) Frequency23%50% Bets/day2.57 Euros/bet442 Total Wagered14821,807 Net Loss333,914 % Lost29%18%

15 Self and Corporate Deposit Limits Corporate Deposit Limits Only 0.3% attempted to exceed deposit limits These subscribers evidenced higher average number of bets per active betting day and higher average size of bets Notification did not curtail betting behavior Self-imposed Deposit Limits 1.2% exercised the self-limit option for deposits These subscribers played a wider variety of games and placed more bets After imposing self-limits, fixed odds gambling changed. Players reduced their active betting days reduced the number of bets they made per day reduced the amount they wagered during specific time periods

16 DO INTERNET GAMBLERS REALLY CHASE THEIR LOSSES? Account Closers Who Report Having Gambling Problems

17 Results Account Closers Full sample Total subjects Total observations (daily aggregates) 10,14310,199 Age (S.D.) 29.3 (8.0)30 (8.5) % male 93% Gambling behaviors Range of gambling days Mean gambling days 4539 Median gambling days 2316 Median bets per gambling day 55 Median stake per bet Median Odds per bet 2.49 Median actual net loss per bet

18 As gamblers approached their respective closure time, they… had increasing monetary loss per bet increased their stake per bet bet shorter odds per bet made fewer bets per day Results Summary

19 Caveat We dont know how much disposable income these bettors had available Therefore, it is not possible to calibrate the social harms that these losses might have caused

20 Despite the caveat about discretionary funds, the results suggest that problem gambling is not as common among Internet sports bettors as the conventional wisdom suggested before we examined actual gambling behavior. Conclusion

21 Dont Translate Opinion & Gossip into Public Policy Let Science be Your Guide

22 Nothing leads the scientist so astray as a premature truth. Pensées dun Biologiste (1939; repr. in The Substance of Man, A Biologists Thoughts, ch. 7, 1962). Jean Rostand (French biologist, writer)

23 Thanks & Internet Resources

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