Online links between gaming and gambling causing concern

SOUTHERN Cross University is looking at the relationship between social media, gaming and gambling and now need as many people as possible to get on board.

Focused on how social media is blurring the lines between gaming and gambling, the study aims to identify and describe how Australians are using new technologies for gambling and if there has been a shift between modes and forms of gambling and gaming.

Lead researcher Dr Sally Gainsbury, from SCU's Centre for Gambling Education and Research, said the aim was to understand whether new technologies have an impact on gambling and problem gambling.

"Social media and social casino games are easily accessible," Dr Gainsbury said.

"Both have the potential to promote and normalise gambling activities, including to children and adolescents, who could then access illegal offshore gambling sites.

"Many gambling operators are also active on social media. Gambling is a popular entertainment activity.

"But some people lose control and some people are more vulnerable to spending beyond their means."

Collaborating with researchers from Adelaide and Canada, the group will look at the prevalence of casino games that are accessed through social media and allow players to spend real money but are not classified as gambling activities or regulated in the same way.

"In a recent large Australian study, the CGER found approximately 13% of gamblers also played social casino games and these people were more likely to be younger and gamble on the Internet."

Individuals or organisations willing to participate in or support the research should contact Dr Sally Gainsbury via email sally.gainsbury@scu.edu.au



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