Browsing by Subject "gambling"

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  • 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.