Gambling has always been a popular method of entertainment. Although different countries have different guidelines as far as restrictions and limitations are concerned, the industry remains to grow in different ways. With the birth of online gambling, issues about accessibility to gambling have been lessened although it has also posed a few problems. Because people find it easier just to go online and play, the risks of addiction to gambling are now at an all-time high. Many of them also do so without understanding the risks involved. To avoid this, different government bodies and the online casinos themselves take part in promoting fair and responsible gambling.
Despite the problems that come with online gambling, it does have a few benefits as well. This explains why this form of entertainment remains a popular pastime for a people all over the world, and why some governments still choose to keep an open mind about it.
Positive Impact of the Online Gambling Industry
Despite popular belief, the online gambling industry has many positive effects on people, societies and economies.
- It provides a convenient and easily accessible form of entertainment.
- It creates great market opportunities and financial benefits for the gambling industry as a whole.
- It supports different recovering economies all over the world: adding a new source of income for businesses that run it, a new source of employment for the people involved in the process, and a new source of taxes for the government.
Negative Impact of the Online Gambling Industry
The online gambling industry also poses a few additional risks for people who get involved in it.
- Loss of control
Because online gambling is more accessible as opposed to regular gambling, it also increases the chances of addiction. People easily lose control not only over the time they spend on it but also over the amount of money they lose.
- Social isolation
As an after-effect of a growing addiction to online gambling, people start isolating themselves from other people and regular routines, to get stuck in front of their favorite game.
- Increase in debt
More and more people fall into debt as they bet more than can afford, often with hopes of being able to get the money back if they win. Of course, most of these games are dependent on chance, which makes the odds uncontrollable.
- Increase in crime and poverty
As people fall into deeper debt, the presence of poverty follows. And as people lose their money on gambling, the desperation to get them back often leads to crime.
What Online Casinos are Doing To Promote Responsible Gambling
Online casinos have put several measures in place to ensure a safe gambling experience. Here are some examples:
- Online casinos ensure a fair gambling experience for all. The guidelines involved in fair gambling policies, as well as in ensuring responsible gambling, are accessible on the casino website through a link provided.
- Some online gambling sites give you the option to set daily, weekly and monthly limits on the amount you are spending.
- Some online casinos offer options for players to exclude themselves from playing for some period of time, when feeling they are starting to have a gambling problem. This is done by notifying the casino about the issue, which would prompt the casino to ban them temporarily from the site.
- Some online casinos offer links and contact details to different organizations that could provide support to people with gambling problems.
Warning Signs of Having a Gambling Problem
Gambling addiction is an illness like any other, and it’s vital to seek help if you feel it is getting out of hand. Warning signs include:
- An inability to stop gambling
- Spending more on gambling than you intend to
- Stealing or borrowing money to gamble
- Trying to win back lost money incessantly
- Gambling to forget about your problems
- Lying about your gambling to friends and loved ones
- Friends and family notice your addiction, but you don’t realize it
Don’t hide from the problem. Contact your local support agency that can provide the support you need to overcome the problem.
- USA Support Network
- Canada Support Network
- UK Support Network
- Australia Support Networks
- New Zealand Support Networks
- South Africa Support Networks
Because online gambling is easier to access, there is always a risk that minors may attempt to take part in it. In most countries, it is illegal to participate in gambling if you are under the age of 18. Other countries consider different legal age limits. Regardless of the case, there are several ways both parents and casinos can prevent underage gambling.
- Age verification software
By law, online casinos have age verification systems installed to prevent minors from gambling.
- Parental controls
All computers have parental settings to prevent the children from access the online gambling sites.
- Talking to your children about gambling
If gambling is not a taboo subject, your child is less likely to attempt to gamble before the legal age.
- Immediate action
If you suspect that your child has been gambling, contact the website involved, so that immediate protective action can be taken.
Online gambling can have both positive and negative effects on individuals and society. But none of them are specific to online gambling as opposed to traditional gambling. Online casinos work hard to promote responsible gambling, protect against underage gambling, and provide measures that can help players with a gambling problem. We want you to enjoy the exciting online gaming experience. The decision to play lies with you. Know your limits. Play responsibly.