A real Dutch treat:problem gambling and responsible gaming Pieter Remmers Lausanne, March 2005
What are we talking about ? Games of skill / chance Problem Gambling Recent Trends Responsible Gaming Company Policy
A chance to win respect/honour Play Entertainment Availability A chance to win money A part of the culture Provides action Provides escape A form of problem solving Attractive environments Why do we gamble?
Games of skill versus Games of chance The characteristics should always be looked at in the way they are mixed and interact. in this process, it may happen that some characteristics of one and the same game rather indicate towards a game of chance, and others towards a game of skill.
Games of chance; the risks • Illusion of control • Absence of effective regulation • Lack of information • Low access threshold • Short odd <-> long odd games • Vulnerable risk-groups • Neuro-biological aspect
Terminology • Non problem gamblers • At-risk gamblers • Problem gamblers • Pathological gamblers
Instruments • DSM-4 • SOGS • NODS • Social indicators • 25 % of net disposable income
Preoccupation Increasing amounts of money Unsuccessful efforts to control or stop Escaping problems Chasing losses Lies Illegal acts Risk or lost relationship, job etc Bail out Pathological gambling
Risk Factors for increase of PG • Continuous games • Accessibility • Easy use • Rapid event frequency • Quickly reinvested winnings • Easy accessible money
Risk Factors for increase of PG • Lack of information • Increased social accessibility • Lack of education • Low outlays and variable stakes • Appeal of technology
What is Responsible Gaming? Polices and practices to prevent and reduce harm of gambling
Who should be targeted? No risk Low risk Moderate risk High Risk Problem Gamblers
Four strategies to promote RG • Environment of the product • Awareness through public education • Staff education / training • Awareness through software tools
Context of policy • Licensing, technical operation • Privacy • Audit and inspections • Credit gambling • Money laundering • Taxation • Age verification • Customer led time limits
Context of policy • Reality checks within game play • Customer led spend limits • Player exclusions • Third party complaints • Training and support of staff • Links to problem gambling information and warnings about the risks associated • Advertising • Player manipulation • Improved customer information - time, odds and financial records
Recent trends • U.K. • Sweden • Germany • The Netherlands • Switzerland
Effectiveness of the problem gambling prevention policy of Holland Casino • CVO, University of Utrecht, 2001
Casino visits in 1998 • Total visits 4.987.000 • Total visitors 1.800.000 • 1 - 3 times a year 88 % • 4 - 103 times a year 11,7 % • >104 times a year 0,3 % • Total number of visitors, visiting twice a week or more: 6000
Problems ? • SOGS 5+ screening (based on DSM-III-R criteria on pathological gambling) 5% • After weighing 2,2% • Based on 1,8 million visitors in 1998: +/- 40.000 visitors (SOGS 5+) • After renewed weighing (Bayes) according to DSM-III-R: +/- 24.000 visitors
Is the RGP policy known? • 47% knows about it • After weighing: 36% • More frequent visitors have a better knowledge of the existence of the RGP policy.
Conclusions and recommendations • Knowledge of policy & measures is reasonably good; gets better with higher frequency of visits. • Signaling and approaching is essential part of the policy. Guests appreciate that. • Frequency of visits as objective signal-indicator 2x a week: • Guests with a lower frequency are having problems too. • Also include change(s) in frequency pattern.
Conclusions and recommendations • Span RGP policy: 60% not captured • Increase profile of RGP policy • Improve signaling and approaching • Clear protocol of RGP practice • Effect protective measures (LV and EB) • Effect most temporarily • Motivation of guest is crucial • More attention for motivational techniques in RGP training sessions
Conclusions and recommendations • Relation with addiction specialists • Protective measure is more effective when combined with any form of professional support or treatment.
Conclusions and recommendations • Prevention • Protective measures • Age limit (18) • Mission Statement • RGP training sessions • Brochure ‘Risks of the game’ • Low stake games • Visitor registration system
PUBLIC * General * Gamblers * All *At risk RESEARCH INSTITUTES * Scientific exploration & development of a relatively new domain GOVERNEMENT * Regulation * Tax Income * Elections INDUSTRY * Public Image * Most economical strategy * Competitive edge PREVENTION & TREATMENT PROFESSIONALS * Quality improvement services * Development of methodology and skills * Lower threshold to services
Responsible Gaming @ PokerRoom.com • First online gaming site to be G4 accredited! • Accredited on the 5th of April 2004 and already a significant positive response • from customers and media. • Why G4 accreditation? • International accreditation will enhance the perception of the entire gambling industry including casinos, gaming machine venues, lotteries, betting and wagering, e-gaming, interactive gaming and mobile phone gaming. • The international standards will promote the concept of rewarding responsible venues or sites. • It will distinguish the accredited companies from unethical ones in the industry. • Accreditation will send a clear message to both communities and governments of the importance of responsible gambling. • The G4 standards exceed any current jurisdictional or regulatory standards in individual countries. • We care…
Site – Home page • We care... • PokerRoom.com supports Responsible Gaming • Strong over 18 only policy • Link to Responsible Gaming information and resources
Preventive and Curative measures Self-Help Brochures, Posters, Mail Shots In-Patient Treatment Self-Exclusion / limited visits Staff Training Empirical Research CASINO Hot Line Face to Face Education - Staff, Customers, & Public Outpatient Counseling Or legislative framework in place?