Browsing by Subject "gambling"

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  • Jääskeläinen, Paula Piritta; Egerer, Michael; Hellman, Matilda (2021)
    While the social and economic costs and benefits of new gambling locations have been studied extensively, less is known about how new venues are experienced in view of city residents’ spatial and sociocultural identities. This study examines residents’ opinions and expectations on a new small-scale casino in the City of Tampere, Finland, as a case of new gambling opportunities in an urban setting. Nine focus group interviews were conducted with 43 Tampere residents three years prior to the scheduled casino opening. The study points out ways in which the residents struggled conceptually with the casino project. When speaking about it, participants drew on an imagery of popular culture, drawing a sharp line between casino gambling and the everyday convenience gambling so omnipresent in Finnish society. As residents of a historical industrial urban region, the participants positioned themselves as critical towards the municipality’s aims to brand the venue in a larger experience economy entity. By drawing on the concepts of city image and city identity, the study is able to demonstrate that the cultural geographical intrusion of new physical gambling spaces can appear as harmful to the city character. In the studied case, this is likely to hamper the City of Tampere’s chances to prevail on the very same experience market, of which the new casino is part.
  • Lerkkanen, Tuulia; Egerer, Michael; Alanko, Anna; Järvinen-Tassopoulos, Johanna; Hellman, Matilda (2020)
    This study fills a gap in gambling research by inquiring into the ways in which people make sense of their country's gambling policy as a comprehensive logic with interrelated facets. Nineteen focus group interviews were conducted with 88 persons in Helsinki, Finland. The interview protocol involved discussion stimuli and tasks. The study participants expressed the view that the public image and function of gambling provision involves a great deal of contradictory elements. Even though the existing monopoly system was given approval in terms of yielding funding to good causes, the interviewees were still critical of how the monopoly system worked when it comes to advertising, availability, and customer loyalty programs. A core dilemma identified was whether the system aims to prevent gambling-related problems or whether it does, in fact, promote gambling consumption. If skilfully executed, the study method can be fruitful for discerning core logical inconsistencies in the gambling regulation systems of other countries as well.
  • Egerer, Michael Dieter; Kankainen, Veera Emilia; Hellman, Carin Matilda Emelie (2018)
    Profits from legal gambling are often channelled to good causes. This system embeds the predicament of whether citizens' potentially problematic gambling activities should be a source of funding for the public good. In this article, this dilemma is unfolded by the receivers of public grants that stem from gambling revenues. A total of twenty-three representatives of Civil Society Organizations were interviewed as beneficiaries of the Finnish state-owned gambling monopolies. The article illustrates explicit dependencies and hidden ethical dilemmas, suggesting that CSOs may have limited possibilities of making ethically consistent decisions in view of the origin of their funding.
  • Egerer, Michael; Marionneau, Virve (2019)
    Background: In many countries, the bulk of gambling takes place in convenience spaces in relatively confined, local markets. Nevertheless, research on gambling locations has so far concentrated on destination gambling in casinos. Aim: This article studies convenience gambling and distinguishes special (e.g., gambling arcades) from everyday convenience gambling spaces (e.g., electronic gambling machines in supermarkets). Rather than geographically or functionally analysing the harm potential of convenience gambling, we approach the issue through cultural theory. Method: We conducted reception analytical group interviews with Finnish and French gamblers. This method is based on focus-group discussions stimulated by six short film clips. Our data consisted of 14 Finnish and 14 French groups, altogether 110 participants. The interviews were analysed thematically on the basis of the types of discourses the participants evoked. Results: The Finnish respondents discussed how their gambling culture was embedded in their everyday lives. They saw it as a harmless pastime if the sums used were small and otherwise unbudgeted. The French informants instead strongly connected gambling with the casino and were suspicious of the easy, cheap availability of convenience gambling. They also differentiated between exceptional and mundane spaces of convenience gambling, which the interviewed Finnish gamblers did not. Conclusions:Social or cultural availability is not only a matter of access; it also influences gamblers after they have entered the gambling venue. Structural characteristics interact with the gambler and the setting, but they are also mediated by the cultural context.
  • Marionneau, Virve; Nikkinen, Janne (2020)
    The economic benefits of gambling may be offset by economic harm to other industries. This economic phenomenon, also known as substitution or cannibalization, refers to a new product that diverts consumption and profits from other products or industries. Gambling may displace revenue from other businesses, but economic impact studies on gambling do not consider such shifts between expenditures. This paper presents a systematic review of the available evidence (N = 118) on whether the introduction or expansion of gambling harms or benefits other business activity. Although the issue has been considered in previous review studies, no industry-level analysis is currently available. The results show that such an approach is necessary, as the impacts of gambling on other industries appear to depend strongly on the type of industry, as well as on the location and type of gambling. Industries that are negatively affected by gambling include other recreation, retail and merchandise, manufacturing, and agriculture and mining. Alcohol consumption, construction, and the finance, insurance, and real estate industries, as well as other services, appear to be positively affected by the presence of gambling. In other cases, the evidence is either mixed or inconclusive. These results nevertheless depend strongly on the type of gambling. Destination gambling appears to be more beneficial to other industries than recreational gambling. Overall, the results show that even in cases when gambling does substitute for other industries, the displacement is not complete. The reasons for this and the gaps in the existing evidence and literature are discussed.
  • Kalli, Mikko (Helsingfors universitet, 2011)
    Aim of this master's thesis paper for consumer economics, is to research gambling advertisements in Finland over a period of 35 years, from 1970 to 2006. Veikkaus Oy (later Veikkaus), was founded in 1940, as one of the three licensed gambling organizations in Finland. Material for the current research comprised 1494 advertisements published by Veikkaus in newspapers and magazines at that time. Veikkaus has the exclusive licence to organize lotto games, sport games, instant games and other draw games in Finland. The other two operators, The Finnish Slot Machine Association RAY and Fintoto (on-track horse betting), were not included in the current analysis. This study has been completed according to research contract and grand by the Finnish Foundation for Gaming Research (Pelitoiminnan tutkimussäätiö). In general, advertisements reflect surrounding culture and time, and their message is built on stratified meanings, symbols and codes. Advertising draws the viewer's attention, introduces the advertised subject, and finally, affects the individual's consumption habits. However, advertisements not only work on individual level, but also influence public perception of the advertised product. Firstly, in order to assess gambling as a phenomenon, this paper discusses gambling as consumer behaviour, and also reviews history of gambling in Finland. Winning is a major feature of gambling, and dreaming about positive change of life is a centre of most gambling ads. However, perceived excitement through risk of losing can also be featured in gambling ads. Secondly, this study utilizes Veikkaus’ large advertising archives, were advertising data is analyzed by content analysis and the semiotic analysis. Two methods have been employed to support analyzing outcome in a synergistic way. Content analysis helps to achieve accuracy and comprehensiveness. Semiotic analysis allows deeper and more sensitive analysis to emerged findings and occurrences. It is important to understand the advertised product, as advertising is bound to the culture and time. Hence, to analyze advertising, it is important to understand the environment where the ads appear. Content analysis of Veikkaus data discovered the main gambling and principal advertisement style for each.period. Interestingly, nearly half of Veikkaus’ advertisements promoted topic other than “just winning the bet”. Games of change, like Lotto, typically advertised indirectly represented dreams about winning. In the category of skill gambling, features were represented as investment, and the excitement of sporting expertise was emphasized. In addition, there were a number of gambling ads that emphasize social responsibility of Veikkaus as a government guided organization. Semiotic methods were employed to further elaborate on findings of content analysis. Dreaming in the advertisements was represented by the product of symbols, (e.g. cars and homes) that were found to have significance connection with each other. Thus, advertising represents change of life obtained by the winning. Interestingly, gambling ads promoting jackpots were often representing religious symbolisms. Ads promoting social responsibility were found to be the most common during economical depression of the 90’s. Deeper analysis showed that at that time, advertisements frequently represented depression-related meanings, such as unemployment and bank loans. Skill gaming ads were often represented by sports expertise – late 90’s, their number started sky rocketing, and continued increasing until 2006 (when this study ended). One may conclude that sport betting draws its meanings from the relevant consumer culture, and from the rules and features of the betted sport.
  • Heiskanen, Maria Kristiina (2017)
    The objective of this article is to understand problem gamblers’ experiences of recovery from financial difficulties caused by problem gambling. Specifically, financial social assistance from government-provided services is considered. A sample of 17 semi-structured interviews with Finnish self-identified, treatment-seeking problem gamblers from various financial positions was analyzed qualitatively using thematic content analysis. The analysis revealed four main themes. The first theme is about how the financial concerns of problem gamblers were left unaddressed by treatment professionals. The second theme discusses the rationalizations behind not applying for or not receiving financial social assistance from government-provided services. Not applying for financial social assistance was due to financial stability and pride of surviving independently, and not receiving assistance, despite applying for it, was mostly due to estimated to have adequate disposable incomes. Third theme is about receiving financial social assistance while or after problematic gambling. Participants living on welfare benefits often gambled away their benefits in hopes of increased income. The financial social assistance also supported recovering, lower-income problem gamblers with living expenses or paying for treatment. Fourth, non-governmental and more controlling forms of financial support were financial assistance within private safety nets, support for over-indebtedness from and NGO and some other person/authority taking control over problem gamblers' every day financial matters. The socio-economic background factors are important to address when designing financial and other support for problem gamblers. The results of this study discuss problem gambling as a financial problem and provide useful information for future (survey) studies of the topic.
  • Latvala, Tiina; Alho, Hannu; Raisamo, Susanna; Salonen, Anne H. (2019)
    Aims: This study explores the associations between gambling involvement, type of gambling, at-risk and problem gambling (ARPG) and register-based grade point average (GPA), among Finnish people aged 18-29 years (N = 676). It is assumed that high gambling involvement and engaging in certain types of gambling are linked to ARPG, and that low school achievement is positively associated with these measures. Methods: A nationwide cross-sectional random sample was collected in 2015. The data were weighted based on gender, age and region. Analyses were carried out using logistic regression models. Results: Frequent gambling, playing several game types, online gambling and ARPG were more common among men than women. Those with low GPA played fast and low-paced daily lottery games and used online casinos significantly more often than men and women with average/high GPA. Men with a low GPA were also more likely to gamble on a weekly basis and played casino games and online poker more often. For women with a low GPA online gambling and playing slot machines were more common than for women with an average/high GPA. When controlling for sociodemographic variables and gambling involvement, men's participation in daily lottery games and online poker was significantly associated with a low GPA, but among women none of the game types remained statistically significant. Among women, playing several different game types was linked with a low GPA. Conclusions: It seems that poorer school achievement is associated not only with frequent gambling, a large number of game types played and online gambling, but also, to some extent at least, with game type preferences.
  • Salonen, Anne H.; Hellman, Matilda; Latvala, Tiina; Castren, Sari (2018)
    Background: This report is an overview of results from the 2016 Finnish Gambling Harms Survey covering the population and clinical perspectives. It summarises the main findings on gambling participation, gambling habits, gambling-related harm, and opinions on gambling advertising. Methods: The population sample (n = 7186) was collected from three regions and the clinical sample (n = 119) in a gambling help clinic. Results: Frequency of gambling in the population sample was characteristically once a week, while in the clinical sample it was daily. Men gambled more often than women only in the population sample. The most common gambling environments were kiosks, grocery stores or supermarkets, and home. The most typical gambling-related harms were financial or emotional/psychological harms; the amount of experienced harm was considerable among the clinical sample. The clinical sample also perceived gambling advertising as obtrusive and as a driving force for gambling. Conclusions: The results of the clinical sample imply that when gambling gets out of hand, the distinctions between gamblers' habits diminish and become more streamlined, focusing on gambling per se - doing it often, and in greater varieties (different game types). There is a heightened need to monitor gambling and gambling-related harm at the population level, especially amongst heavy consumers, in order to understand what type of external factors pertaining to policy and governance may contribute to the shift from recreational to problem gambling.
  • Oksanen, Atte; Sirola, Anu; Savolainen, Iina; Kaakinen, Markus (2019)
    Background and aims: In recent years online gambling has become a potential risk for young people. The purpose of this study was to analyse patterns of gambling activities and their association with behavioural risk factors and protective factors. Data and Method: A demographically balanced sample of Finnish respondents aged 15-25 years (N = 1200) filled out an online survey in March-April 2017. Principal component analysis was used to reduce the variables on gambling activities to smaller sets of components, and regression analysis was used to analyse whether behavioural risk factors and protective factors were associated with the gambling patterns found. Results: Two main components were found: online- and skill-based competent gambling and chance-based entertainment gambling. Competent gambling had statistically significant associations with a variety of behavioural problems and risks, including psychological distress, lower social support, lower delay of gratification, hazardous drinking, regular drug use, compulsive Internet use, and problem gambling. Entertainment gambling was associated with lower delay gratification, hazardous drinking, and problem gambling. Entertainment gambling had a negative association with compulsive Internet use and a positive association with social support. Conclusions: Online-based competent gambling is a potentially hazardous form of gambling. New forms of online gambling are potential risks for younger generations. Health professionals working with young people should be aware of the role of online gambling and associated activities.
  • Borch, Anita (2013)
    Problem-oriented studies of gambling have been dominated by psychological and increasingly neuroscientific approaches. Less attention has been paid to the social surroundings that influence and are influenced by problem gambling. To help fill this gap in research, this thesis focuses on what Sulkunen and Rantala (Rantala and Sulkunen, 2011, Sulkunen 2007, 2012) call cultural images of gambling and problem gambling. Cultural images refer to shared thoughts, which main function is to create a common reality of meanings, and hence enable people to orientate in the world and to communicate with others. Inspired by Sulkunen and Rantala s theories, it can be argued that problem gamblers undergo a process with three partially overlapping and mutually influencing stages of image-making: semiosis, de-semiosis and re-semiosis. In the process of semiosis, gambling is perceived, interpreted and given meaning. In the processes of de-semiosis and re-semiosis this meaning is changed and new images are born. So far the hypothesis of Sulkunen and Rantala has been analyzed in two particular settings: the fictional context of Western films dealing with different kinds of addiction, and the virtual context of a Finnish web forum discussing gambling and gambling problems. The aim of the thesis is to explore the hypothesis in the context of the household. Studying cultural images in the context of the household is an important supplement to dominant psychological and neuroscientific approaches on gambling, and hence contributes to preventing and reducing the harm of problem gambling in society. Based on qualitative studies of households with and without reported gambling problems, the analysis supports the hypothesis suggesting that problem gamblers undergo a process of semiosis, de-semiosis and re-semiosis. Interestingly, the research also indicates that other household members, in this case the spouse, seem to undergo a similar process. Consequently, significant members of the immediate family should to a larger extent be included in prevention and harm reduction work, both by virtue of being an affected part ( patient ), and in terms of representing a self-help resource ( therapist ).
  • Nikkinen, Janne Tapio (2019)
    Licensing is currently the most popular option among regulators for controlling gambling operations. However, approximately 20% of operators are still public monopolies. Many forms of gambling (especially lotteries) are government operated even in countries with a licensing system. This creates an inherent conflict of interest, given that government is supposed to protect the wellbeing of its citizenry and to reap the benefits of gambling at the same time. At least in the gambling monopoly, however, addressing the unavoidable harm that results from gambling should be a priority. Industry self-regulation and reliance on “responsible gambling” rely too much on individuals to control their own gambling. It is suggested in this contribution that it is possible to provide more comprehensive consumer protection, recognising both the duty of governments to take care of their own citizens and the fact that industry self-regulation is not enough. Precommitment cards have been tested in various contexts, and have shown promise in terms of providing tools for individuals to restrict their own gambling. However, given the known shortcomings such as allowing the use of other cards that are not one’s own, and other venues, it is clear that in themselves they do not guarantee effective prevention. Personal licensing is therefore explored as a move forward in this literature-based discussion. Although the system may be applicable to other contexts, the focus is on the Nordic countries. Given that the underlying justification for gambling monopolies is to control gambling-related harm, in the cases of Finland and Norway licensing could be combined with loyalty cards introduced by monopoly operators. This would provide a feasible alternative to current practices of responsible gambling.
  • Marionneau, Virve (2015)
    AIMS - The principles of free trade and free circulation of services within the European Union have created pressures to make the strictly controlled European gambling markets more open. According to the Court of Justice of the European Union, restrictions on gambling are only allowed if they are justified in admissible terms of consumer protection, prevention of criminal activity and protection of public order. This study compares the gambling laws of two European societies, France and Finland, to analyse how their legal frames of gambling have been adjusted to these principles. DESIGN - The data consists of up-to-date legislation on gambling in Finland and France. A qualitative analysis was conducted to study whether new ways of justifying have been included in legislative texts and if these are substantiated by measures related to consumer protection or crime prevention. RESULTS - France has mainly justified its restrictive policies on gambling in terms of preventing criminal activities while the Finnish legislation highlights the charitable causes funded by gambling proceeds, a claim not accepted by the Court of Justice of the European Union. Consumer protection is increasingly stressed in both countries, and the range of rationales has also grown notably since 2007. CONCLUSION - While the vocabularies of justification accepted by the CJEU have expanded since 2007, these have not been substantiated by many new legislative measures. This is not attributed to political ill will but rather to the difficulty of changing existing legislative traditions.
  • Nikkinen, Janne; Marionneau, Virve (2021)
    Aims: This article assesses the efficiency of six Nordic state-controlled gambling companies in raising revenue for their host societies, and the terms under which they operate. Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Norway have established gambling monopolies on the grounds that they help to prevent fraud and money laundering, and channel proceeds to their host societies. Within the last decade, Denmark (2012) and Sweden (2019) have opened substantial parts of their gambling markets to competition, whereas Finland and Norway continue to uphold monopolies. Design: The analysis is based on publicly disclosed income statements and financial reporting concerning Nordic gambling operators for the year 2017. We calculated how much they contribute to societies, what are the costs, and how these figures compare among the companies. Results: We found that Veikkaus raises the highest amounts of surplus to society both in absolute terms and in relative numbers, and that, overall, the companies vary in efficiency. We discuss the reasons for these differences, focusing on their respective product portfolios, institutional frameworks and competitive market positions. Conclusions: The results problematise the measurement of efficiency in gambling companies in monetary terms. Efficiency depends on high total consumption with little regard to the principles of responsible gambling and the prevention of gambling problems. Nordic countries have a strong commitment to the protection of health, but in the case of gambling, protecting the monopoly seems to outweigh harm prevention.
  • Sulkunen, Pekka; Babor, Thomas F.; Cisneros-Örnberg, Jenny; Egerer, Michael; Hellman, Matilda; Livingstone, Charles; Marionneau, Virve; Nikkinen, Janne; Orford, Jim; Room, Robin; Rossow, Ingeborg (2021)
    The gambling industry has grown into a global business in the 21st century. This has created the need for a new emphasis on problem prevention. This article highlights the core themes of the book Setting Limits: Gambling, Science and Public Policy, taking a broad view of the consequences of gambling for society as a burden on health, well-being and equality. The book covers the extent of gambling and gambling-related problems in different societies and presents a critical review of research on industry practices, policy objectives and preventive approaches, including services to people suffering from gambling and its consequences. It discusses the developments in game characteristics and gambling environments and provides evidence on how regulation can affect those. Effective measures to minimize gambling harm exist and many are well supported by scientific evidence. They include restrictions on general availability as well as selective measures to prevent gamblers from overspending. The revenue generated from gambling for the industry, governments, and providers of public services funded from gambling returns presents an obstacle to developing policies to implement harm-reduction measures. A public interest approach must weigh these interests against the suffering and losses of the victims of gambling.
  • Salonen, Anne H.; Alho, Hannu; Castren, Sari (2016)
    Aims: This study investigates the proportion of concerned significant others (CSOs) of problem gamblers at population level and describes the extent and type of gambling harms for CSOs. Methods: Cross-sectional random sample data (n = 4515) were collected in 2015. The data were weighted based on age, gender and residence. CSOs were identified using a question including seven options. Gambling harms were inquired using structured questions. Descriptive statistics and Chi-Squared and Fischer's exact tests were used. Results: Overall, the proportion of CSOs was 19.3%. Males had close friends with gambling problems more often than females, while females had family members with gambling problems more often than males. Of the CSOs, 59.5% had experienced one or more harms. Females experienced more harms than males. Typical harms were worry about health or well-being of close ones, emotional distress and problems in interpersonal relationships. CSOs with a problem gambler in the family, particularly a partner, child/children or mother, experienced harms more often than CSOs with a problem gambler as a close friend. Conclusions: Female gender was associated with a larger extent of harms. The extent of harms was greatest if the problem gambler was a family member; however, a substantial amount of harms were experienced when the problem gambler was a close friend. CSOs and their position in evaluating gambling harms in general should be acknowledged. Persons beyond the nuclear family and the harms they encounter should be better acknowledged in prevention and harm minimisation. Early identification and a clear referral path to tailored support in occupational, social and healthcare settings may be considered.
  • Savolainen, Iina; Oksanen, Atte; Kaakinen, Markus; Sirola, Anu; Paek, Hye-Jin (2020)
    Background: In the ever-growing and technologically advancing world, an increasing amount of social interaction takes place through the Web. With this change, loneliness is becoming an unprecedented societal issue, making youth more susceptible to various physical and mental health problems. This societal change also influences the dynamics of addiction. Objective: Employing the cognitive discrepancy loneliness model, this study aimed to provide a social psychological perspective on youth addictions. Methods: A comprehensive survey was used to collect data from American (N=1212; mean 20.05, SD 3.19; 608/1212, 50.17% women), South Korean (N=1192; mean 20.61, SD 3.24; 601/1192, 50.42% women), and Finnish (N=1200; mean 21.29, SD 2.85; 600/1200, 50.00% women) youths aged 15 to 25 years. Perceived loneliness was assessed with the 3-item Loneliness Scale. A total of 3 addictive behaviors were measured, including excessive alcohol use, compulsive internet use, and problem gambling. A total of 2 separate models using linear regression analyses were estimated for each country to examine the association between perceived loneliness and addiction. Results: Loneliness was significantly related to only compulsive internet use among the youth in all 3 countries (P Conclusions: The findings reveal existing differences between youths who spend excessive amounts of time online and those who engage in other types of addictive behaviors. Experiencing loneliness is consistently linked to compulsive internet use across countries, although different underlying factors may explain other forms of addiction. These findings provide a deeper understanding in the mechanisms of youth addiction and can help improve prevention and intervention work, especially in terms of compulsive internet use.