Millions of people are engaged in gambling every single day. With the rise of online websites offering easy access to such platforms, it’s become increasingly popular especially among the youth. Even though this industry is seen as a pastime, increased availability has led many people to engage in it full time. Though there are those professionals that derive their income from it, for the most part, it’s a wasteful engagement to the majority.
Cases of gambling addiction and problem gambling are on the rise with far worse consequences in this age of information and technological advancement. At the comfort of your couch, on your smartphone, you can engage in any form of gambling you want. Online casinos take advantage of this to do targeted marketing to people who frequent their sites. They make it seem like all fun and games but many people end up in serious financial predicaments as a result.
Online Casino Advertising
There are thousands of online casinos operating legally and illegally all across the world. Many of them are not only available to consumers in their countries, but have a wider reach. Some of the online casinos without license in Netherlands, for example, are based in Malta and have operations in the majority of the countries in the world. Some governments have put measures in place to cab this far-reach but there is still the presence of those operating illegally.
Online casinos engage in active advertising and many target repeat clients for this purpose. They make use of their clients’ information to target adverts that make them remain active users of their platforms. This has been continually frowned upon and in some countries like Sweden completely outlawed. Online casinos in such countries are not permitted to engage in direct marketing of any of their services or games.
Targeted advertising for gambling addicts has been viewed as immoral because some companies target addicts for this purpose. Through research on how often a player engages in gambling even with continuous losses, they keep pumping more adverts their way. This brings them back more and more.
The rise in numbers of addicted gamblers is a worrying trend in the world with many of them gambling money they can’t afford to lose. They strive to make the next bet their big score which often never happens. The results are serious financial constraints, broken relationships, loss of assets, and even suicide.
How Casino Advertising Contributes to Addiction
Online casinos have been accused lately of contributing to the growing numbers of addicted gamblers. The trend is worrying with many people from all walks of life spending more time placing bets and playing casino games than being productive. The way these casinos contribute to this problem is by:
- Targeted Advertisements
There are clauses once you register on a platform that you must accept to receive marketing information and notification from these sites. You are not permitted to create an account successfully unless you accept this.
Even though some countries have taken measures to ensure sites make this an optional choice, some make it mandatory. This leads to targeted marketing that only makes users want to engage in more gambling based on all the new information.
- Flashy Advertisements
Some addicted gamblers claim that it’s the flashiness of the adverts that draws them back for more and more. These online casinos use flashy images, beautiful people, and even celebrities to advertise their games. This causes gamblers to have unrealistic hopes of the next game or bet being their big score. More often than not, that is not the case.
Signs and Symptoms of Addiction
It’s important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of gambling addiction to help keep your loved ones and yourself safe. Once these are detected, measures to rehabilitate the behavior must be taken fast.
- Low Impulse Control
For an addicted gambler, they can’t seem to control the urge to engage in gambling even when they are aware they shouldn’t. The drive is too much to control and this leads to reckless behavior like gambling with funds set aside for other matters.
- Credit Gambling
Addiction is detected once you start gambling on credit with money you don’t have. This behavior plunges you deeper into debt but you don’t seem to be able to stop either way. The use of credit cards or borrowed money for the next placed bets is a worrying trend. This leads gamblers to even engage loan sharks for money to gamble which can be dangerous in the end.
- Secrets and Lies
Once you start lying and keeping secrets from your family and friends, then there is a problem. You can’t seem to be straight about how much you’re spending on gambling. Little lies of omission grow into big ones that can even result in crippling debt for all those involved.
With an increase in online gambling especially where casinos are involved, more people are getting addicted. This is a worrying trend that results in disastrous consequences. More measures must be put in place in each country ensuring consumers are protected from casino advertising. This has proven to be one of the main causes of the increase in cases of addiction among consumers of all ages and backgrounds.