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State lottery communication -Fun or Games? Blythe Smith 3 May 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "State lottery communication -Fun or Games? Blythe Smith 3 May 2012."— Presentation transcript:

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2 State lottery communication -Fun or Games? Blythe Smith 3 May 2012

3 Fun?

4 Play! Play online! Spin your way to points for free play! Scratch and win! Feel the thrills!

5 Espoolaisnainen sai yllättävän puhelun: ”Olet euroa rikkaampi!”

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8 Don’t play! Know your limit, play within it! Set a budget and stick to it! Don’t chase your losses! Play for fun, not to make money!

9 BEENDEN SIE DAS SPIEL, BEVOR DAS SPIEL SIE BEENDET.

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11 Conflict!

12 State lottery monopolies & the exclusive right; justifications?

13 Public order?

14 Public order? Yeah, well, maybe, but… Martin Arendts 2011: ”Recent case-law has shown that outlawing private operators will not work in the longer run….

15 The Public order? Well, maybe, but… …There is a simple truth about betting and other forms of gaming:

16 The...you can make it illegal, but you cannot make it unpopular...

17 Public order? Well, maybe, but… The...Prohibiting private operators also poses a quite practical problem:

18 Public order? Well, maybe, but… The...You can only regulate (and effectively tax, which is sometimes even more popular for the state) what is legal. Martin Arendts 2011: ”A view of European gambling regulation”

19 Consumer protection?

20 Consumer protection? (Reducing gambling)

21 Financial reasons?

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24 Financial reasons (Funding good causes): yes, but… Restrictions on gambling services at national level are at times justified by policy reasons such as the financing of benevolent or public interest activities. GREEN PAPER On on-line gambling in the Internal Market Section 2.3.3: Notwithstanding that the systems put in place for this purpose should comply with applicable state aid rules, it is noteworthy that according to the (EC) Court of Justice, the funding of such social activities may not constitute the substantive justification for the restrictive policy but only an ancillary beneficial consequence.

25 What puzzles me?

26 What puzzles me… How do state lotteries create and justify their existence through discourse? –D–Discourse in a broad sense, including visual imagery. How do state lotteries manage the conflict? –B–Between successful product advertising and legislative and regulatory pressure?

27 Example 1 Step 1. The new Lotteries Act (& EU regulation) prohibits the advertising of games classified as particularly addiction-provoking.

28 Step 2. Let’s not call it advertising; let’s call it product information.

29 Step 3. Veikkaus’ Annual report 2011: Marketing and advertising expenses only increased by 13.3% Product information expenses increased by 297.9%.

30 Product information?

31 Example 2 “The greatest challenge with regard to the operative functions is the growing number of customer transactions. In 2012 we expect the number of transactions processed in Veikkaus’ game system to exceed the limit of half a million for the first time. The system structure faces new demands as the customers’ increasing needs are met with reforms and improvements.” Veikkaus’ Annual report 2011

32 The greatest challenge with regard to the operative functions is the growing number of customer transactions. In 2012 we expect the number of transactions processed in Veikkaus’ game system to exceed the limit of half a million for the first time. The system structure faces new demands as the customers’ increasing needs are met with reforms and improvements. Veikkaus’ Annual report 2011 Wait a minute… what’s really going on here? The customers’ needs have a life of their own… …”we” are passively expecting… …and they are humbly and passively met (by someone) Customer transactions are increasing… …poor operative functions have a tough time dealing with them… …even the system structure has a hard time coping…

33 Example 2 Hey guys, did you notice the nominalizations in that passage? Yeah, gross… Yeah, like “the growing number of customer transactions”… Oh yeah, and what about that agentless passive? There’s definitely something cooking… and I don’t like it!

34 LOL! The participant roles were weird…… You’re right! What kind of actors are “customer transactions” and “system structure”?...not to say anything of transitivity.... Oh, I give up….

35 …so what’s new? That’s part of the discourse of financial reporting… … and the thematic structure foregrounded the abstract, impersonal actors… Did you notice playing wasn’t actually mentioned at all? So what… …like “challenge” and “system structure”?

36 The discourse of financial reporting? Oh I think it oozes promotional, legitimating, and technical discourse, and is heavy with ideology and other motives than pure financial reporting… Well yeah, that’s the genre of annual reports for you all right… Oh, will you please cut it out! Can’t we just agree it’s a hybrid… …like most present- day genres?

37 Let me just say one more thing…

38 ...or two…

39 I think what the text is trying to say is: ”We work for the common good, to reduce and channel people’s gaming. We do not play an active role in the way in which our customers’ gaming desire behaves….

40 …It needs, demands, and wants on its own. And the system handles transactions (instead of games which the players spend their household money on)…

41 …We are simple bystanders marvelling at the wild desire and the mechanically working system and trying to humbly serve our customers.”

42 I think there’s a flagrant conflict between what state lotteries claim they’re doing and what they’re actually doing.

43 It’s amazing how much a little bit of critical discourse analysis reveals, isn’t it?

44 A nd now… for something completely different…

45 Research Plan

46 T hank you!


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