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What Differentiates Professional Poker Players from Recreational Poker Players? A Qualitative Interview Study

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Abstract

The popularity of poker (and in particular online poker) has increasingly grown worldwide in recent years. This increase in the popularity of poker has led to the increased incidence of the ‘professional poker player’. However, very little empirical research has been carried out into this relatively new group of gamblers. The aim was to determine how professional poker players are able to make a living from playing poker and what differentiates them from recreational poker players. This research comprised a grounded theory study involving the analysis of data from three professional poker players, one semi-professional poker player and five recreational poker players. Using a process of open coding, focused coding and theoretical sampling, in addition to constant comparison of the data, a number of themes and categories emerged. The central theme as to what distinguishes professional poker players from recreational players was that professional poker players were much more disciplined in their gambling behaviour. They treated their poker playing as work, and as such were more likely to be logical and controlled in their behaviour, took less risks, and were less likely to chase losses. Recreational players were more likely to engage in chasing behaviour, showed signs of lack of control, took more risks, and engaged in gambling while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Also of importance was the number of games and time spent playing online. Recreational players only played one or two games at a time, whereas professional poker players were much more likely to engage in multi-table poker online, and played longer sessions, thus increasing the potential amount of winnings. Playing poker for a living is very possible for a minority of players but it takes a combination of talent, dedication, patience, discipline and disposition to succeed. KeywordsPoker–Gambling–Professional poker–Skill

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... Wilson (2003) states that both the ability to deceive and the ability to recognize deception are crucial skills that aid in successful poker playing. Opponent modeling is the act of perceiving and interpreting opponent behaviours and adjusting one's own strategy on the basis of this information (McCormack & Griffiths, 2011). McCormack and Griffiths (2011), in a qualitative study, found that the professional players (n = 4) created more accurate opponent models than did recreational players (n = 5). ...
... tral facial expression. Wilson (2003) states that both the ability to deceive and the ability to recognize deception are crucial skills that aid in successful poker playing. Opponent modeling is the act of perceiving and interpreting opponent behaviours and adjusting one's own strategy on the basis of this information (McCormack & Griffiths, 2011). McCormack and Griffiths (2011), in a qualitative study, found that the professional players (n = 4) created more accurate opponent models than did recreational players (n = 5). Castaldo (2007), in an interview with a professional female player, found that she would change playing strategies (e.g., choosing to bluff more or less) depending on her perception of her opp ...
... High scores on this component of social intelligence speak to an individual's ability to accurately interpret the behaviour of others. This finding supports previous research that indicates that better players make mental models of opponents (Castaldo, 2007; McCormack & Griffiths, 2011; Wilson, 2003) and, at least in part, use this information to direct their own playing strategy. That the relationship detected between PSM scores and this component of social intelligence was only moderate, and that no other component of social intelligence was found to significantly relate to poker skill, indicates, however, that high social intelligence is neither essential nor sufficient in the making of a skilled poker player. ...
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Poker is characterized as a “mixed” game: a game that includes both skill and chance components. But what individual differences are characteristic of skilled poker players? No previous study has sought to evaluate the full scope of characteristics contributing to playing skill. The purpose of this study was to fill this void by attempting to comprehensively examine the individual characteristics associated with good poker players. Results from a sample of undergraduate students and community members (n = 100) showed that good players are more likely to be male, to have lower susceptibility to gambling fallacies, a greater tolerance for financial risk, superior social information processing skills, and less openness to aesthetic and imaginative experience. Evidence from this study also indicates that having sufficient levels of most of these attributes is more important for poker success than having exceptional strength in just one or two of these areas. © 2015, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. All rights reserved.
... Although professional gambling has traditionally been associated with race wagering (Rosecrance, 1986(Rosecrance, , 1988, one of the fastest growing forms is poker, popularized through media coverage of the World Series of Poker and the lifechanging success of previously amateur players such as Chris Moneymaker (Griffiths, Parke, Wood & Parke, 2006;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). Professional gamblers such as Chris Ferguson, Doyle Bronson, and Phil Ivey have attained celebrity status, while Hollywood celebrities including Ben Affleck, Tobey Maguire, and Meg Tilly have extended their celebrity status through poker playing (Hardy, 2006;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). ...
... Although professional gambling has traditionally been associated with race wagering (Rosecrance, 1986(Rosecrance, , 1988, one of the fastest growing forms is poker, popularized through media coverage of the World Series of Poker and the lifechanging success of previously amateur players such as Chris Moneymaker (Griffiths, Parke, Wood & Parke, 2006;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). Professional gamblers such as Chris Ferguson, Doyle Bronson, and Phil Ivey have attained celebrity status, while Hollywood celebrities including Ben Affleck, Tobey Maguire, and Meg Tilly have extended their celebrity status through poker playing (Hardy, 2006;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). Celebrity endorsement and media glamorization of gambling as a legitimate occupation have fuelled aspirations as a professional gambler, especially amongst youth (McMullen, 2011;Monaghan et al., 2008). ...
... The study also adds to the scant knowledge on characteristics and behaviors that may distinguish professional, amateur and problem gamblers. By focusing on socio-demographic characteristics, gambling behavior, Internet gambling participation, erroneous gambling beliefs, problem gambling, and negative gambling consequences, the study broadens knowledge of professional gambling beyond a previous research focus on motivations, game-play behaviors, control strategies and psycho-social functioning (Bjerg, 2010;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Radburn & Horsley, 2011;Rosecrance, 1986Rosecrance, , 1988Weinstock et al., 2013). It is also the first study to quantitatively examine problem gambling and associated harms amongst a large number of semi/professional gamblers and to identify distinguishing features between self-identified semi/professional gamblers with and without gambling problems. ...
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Growing interest in pursuing a professional gambling career has been accompanied by a rise in individuals self-identifying as professional gamblers. Whether this trend reflects an actual increase in individuals sustaining livelihoods from gambling or inaccurate appropriation of a now glamorized identity is unclear. Adopting a self-image of professional gambler in the absence of ability to earn a sustainable income from the activity may increase risk of problem gambling and deter help-seeking. However, extent of problem gambling in this cohort is uncertain. This study aimed to: (1) determine any differences that might validate the self-reported identity of professional and semi-professional gamblers by investigating characteristics and behaviors that distinguish them from amateur gamblers; and (2) identify characteristics and behaviors that distinguish between self-identified semi-professional/professional gamblers with and without gambling problems. In an online survey of 4,594 Australian gamblers, 1.2 % identified as professional gamblers, 6.8 % as semi-professional gamblers, and 92.0 % as amateur gamblers. Self-identified professional and semi-professional gamblers were distinguished from amateur gamblers by preference for skill-based gambling, higher reported likelihood of winning, and greater use of online gambling and multiple online operators. Two-fifths of professional and three-fifths of semi-professional gamblers scored as moderate risk or problem gamblers, but negative consequences were more likely personal, interpersonal and work/study related, rather than financial. Although results support the general accuracy of self-reported semi/professional gambling status, measures are needed to help semi/professional gamblers distinguish whether their gambling is a problem or profession.
... Their informants emphasized the element of skill and that poker should not be understood as gambling. The importance of acknowledging the element of skill in poker is probably the most emphasized statement from the poker players in qualitative studies (Barrault et al., 2014, Bouju et al., 2013Bradley & Schroeder, 2009;Istrate, 2011;Jouhki, 2011;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Palomäki, Laakasuo, & Salmela, 2013;Radburn & Horsley, 2011;Recher & Griffiths, 2012;Vines & Linders, 2016;Wood & Griffiths, 2008;Zaman, Geurden, De Cock, De Schutter, & Abeele, 2014). ...
... Playing poker online could be interpreted as a lonely activity, and may instigate more negative effects on academic performances, financial and interpersonal spheres compared to live poker (Hardy, 2006;Kairouz, Paradis, & Monson, 2016;McComb & Hanson, 2009;Mihaylova, Kairouz, & Nadeau, 2013); however, online players may find different ways to interact with other players (Laakasuo et al., 2016). O'Leary and Carroll also discuss this situation: ''Online poker's image is seen as highly unsocial (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012); however, these forums act as an outlet for intense social interactions, and dialogues surrounding the game. Furthermore, these social interactions are governed by a distinct hierarchy within the OPS [Online Poker Sub-culture]'' (O'Leary & Carroll, 2013, p. 618). ...
... In two studies of British players, by Recher and Griffiths (2012) and McCormack and Griffiths (2012), certain of the informants took this matter one step further and emphasized that they had no problems with winning money from gambling addicts: ''Bad players and those addicted to gambling are professional poker player's revenue stream. If one of these professionals does not take their money someone else will'' (Recher & Griffiths, 2012, p. 21). ...
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In this qualitative study, 15 poker players described a lack of understanding and unfair criticism from non-players, both of which made them unwilling to discuss poker. A theoretical framework, based on classical theories from Goffman (1963), Becker (1963) and Douglas (2003), was used to analyze the players’ perspectives. This article argues that the society’s reluctance to acknowledge poker players’ competence might cause a lack of dialogue between players and non-players. Over time, this situation may cause players to consider themselves outsiders. This result could contribute to make it difficult to combine poker playing with the life outside and to encourage former professional poker players into education or other jobs. In poker, unlike most forms of gambling, a personal connection operates between the winning and losing players. A common criticism against successful poker players is that they are cynical, and take advantage of weak or compulsive players. Previous research has hypothesized that cultural differences operate with players relate to opponents with potential gambling problems. This study identifies three different approaches and attitudes poker players may have towards suspected compulsive gamblers, and suggests that players from Nordic welfare states are more likely to empathize with compulsive gamblers than players from more market liberal countries. The players in this inquiry generally stated that they disliked playing against suspected problem gamblers, and argued that it created for them difficult ethical dilemmas. To confront a stranger with a gambling problem then advise him or her to stop was described as challenging, especially in front of other players.
... Online, it is also common to play several tables at the same time (multi-tabling), which is not possible in live poker (Barrault et al., 2014). Studies have reported that as many as eight (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012) to 24 tables are played simultaneously (Hopley, Dempsey, & Nicki, 2010;Palomäki, Laakasuo, & Salmela, 2014). From these numbers, an online poker player may play 50 to 120 times more hands per hour than an offline player does. ...
... From these numbers, an online poker player may play 50 to 120 times more hands per hour than an offline player does. Playing several tables at the same time contributes to less statistical variance and increases the ability to target multiple weaker players simultaneously and thus increases the opportunity to maximize the profit (Barrault et al., 2014;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Palomäki et al., 2014). The speed helps the players gain experience from different poker scenarios quickly because they have played a large number of hands in a short period (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). ...
... Playing several tables at the same time contributes to less statistical variance and increases the ability to target multiple weaker players simultaneously and thus increases the opportunity to maximize the profit (Barrault et al., 2014;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Palomäki et al., 2014). The speed helps the players gain experience from different poker scenarios quickly because they have played a large number of hands in a short period (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). ...
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Several studies have focused on some of the skill elements needed to become a successful poker player, but few have described the poker players' learning processes. No studies have used a learning theory to analyse poker players' variety of learning methods or analysed whether the competitive and deceptive nature of the poker game have an impact on the players' learning outcome. This article examines 15 poker players' learning processes and how the players enter different learning communities of practice, arguing that different communities have different norms. In a friendly community of practice, the players were generous in helping each other and revealed secrets so that the group could grow together. In the competitive community of practice, the players were more cautious, and misleading information was common. Online poker, as well as new technology, has made several new artefacts (learning tools) available for poker players, and their main contribution is to reveal information that was previously unavailable. Because poker is a game of information, it greatly affects the players' learning potential.
... Plusieurs recherches ont investigué les motifs qui poussent les gens à jouer au poker en ligne. Parmi les raisons recensées, on retrouve l'aspect stratégique et le désir de développer ses habiletés (Bradley & Schroeder, 2009;Bonneau & Turgeon, 2010), l'espoir de faire de l'argent (Martin, 2008;Pastinelli, 2008;Responsible Gambling Council, 2006;White, Mun, Kauffman, Whelan & Regan, 2007), le divertissement (Bonneau & Turgeon, 2010), le travail (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Radburn & Horsley, 2011) et la fuite de problèmes ou d'émotions désagréables . Les travaux de Wood et al. (2007) ont montré que tous les types de joueurs de poker en ligne sont motivés par l'argent et l'excitation, mais que comparativement aux autres joueurs, les joueurs pathologiques sont plus enclins à pratiquer le poker en ligne pour fuir leurs problèmes personnels ou parce qu'ils se sentent chanceux. ...
... Existet-il d'autres différences dans l'expérience émotionnelle vécue par les joueurs de poker en ligne qui ont un problème de jeu et par ceux qui n'en ont pas? Il s'agit d'un aspect particulièrement important à explorer, puisque les joueurs de poker perc¸oivent la gestion des émotions comme une habileté à développer pour devenir un joueur gagnant (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). De plus, il semble que l'état émotionnel des joueurs aux JHA en général peut interagir avec les perceptions entretenues à l'égard du jeu (Barrault & Varescon, 2012). ...
... La plupart des études portant sur le poker visent les joueurs de poker dans leur ensemble (Bonneau & Turgeon, 2010), ou comparent les joueurs de poker en ligne ou en salle (Dufour et al., 2009), récréatifs ou professionnels (Radburn & Horsley, 2011;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012), expérimentés ou inexpérimentés (Linnet, Gebauer, Shaffer, Mouridsen & Møller, 2010;Palomäki, Laakasuo & Salmela, 2012), et gagnants ou pas sur le plan financier (Griffiths, Parke, Wood & Rigbye, 2010). De rares études ont abordé la comparaison des perceptions de joueurs pratiquant le poker en ligne et qui présentent des niveaux de problème de jeu différents. ...
Article
Although the practice of online poker is associated with high rates of gambling problems, little is yet known about what distinguishes online poker players with different levels of gambling problems. Three groups of Texas Hold’em online poker players (low-risk (n = 7), at-risk (n = 7) and problematic (n = 3)), were compared in terms of their motivations to play, their emotions experienced during play and their perceptions about chance and skill. Thematic analysis from focus groups conducted reveals that the motivations to play and emotions reported in the groups are similar. The at-risk and problematic groups distinguish themselves from the low-risk group in their overestimation of their personal skill. The beliefs gathered through this study will contribute to the development or adaptation of erroneous beliefs’ questionnaires used with online poker players. © 2015, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. All rights reserved.
... Some of the motivations for playing online poker professionally reported here echo previous studies -particularly the idea that poker playing is a job (e.g. McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Parke & Griffiths, 2011b). ...
... All of the players talked about a continued sense of learning in order to stay on top of their game and echoes the findings of previous qualitative studies (e.g. McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Parke & Griffiths, 2011b). This is common with other professions where one is competing against others to determine financial success: ...
... The most salient finding is that online poker professionals believed that some individuals could be simultaneously a professional player and be addicted. Another key finding was the emphasis that the professional players put on the continual learning process of poker, and confirms a similar finding reported by McCormack and Griffiths (2012). The professional players had a sense of accomplishment and pride in themselves and their ability to win consistently. ...
Article
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There have been a growing number of studies on various psychological aspects of online poker. Despite increasing research on various aspects of poker, there has been a relative lack of research on the professional online poker player. Given this paucity of research, the present study was designed to explore how online professional poker players think, feel, and act whilst they are on and off the virtual baize. An e-interview (with four male online professional poker players) was conducted and subsequently analysed using Thematic Analysis. The Thematic Analysis identified three superordinate themes, each with three subordinate themes. These were: Player Motivation (Money/Income; Fun To Play; Lack of Jobs), Enhanced Self-Esteem (Ego, Pride and Confidence; Education and Learning; Playing Ability), and Poker Gambling As A Skill (Bad Players Have Problems; I’m Not Addicted; Life Is A Gamble). Each of the online professional poker players believed poker to be predominantly a game of skill. Interestingly, a novel finding that has not been reported in the literature before was that all of the professional players believed that it was possible to be both profitable and addicted to poker simultaneously.
... Et tandis que le joueur social joue de manière récréative, le joueur professionnel, lui, joue de manière purement professionnelle. En effet, il considère le jeu comme son travail, celui-ci étant sa source principale de revenus (Radburn et Horsley, 2011 ;McCormack et Griffiths, 2012 ;Parke et Griffiths, 2012 ;Biolcati, Passini et Griffiths, 2015). Le jeu occupe d'ailleurs une place importante dans sa vie. ...
... Nous pouvons donner comme exemple le poker, qui nécessite une confiance en soi et un contrôle important pour bluffer (Parke et al., 2005). De plus, le joueur professionnel se comporte différemment face aux pertes financières dans le sens où il sera beaucoup moins dans la « chasse » des pertes, c'est-à-dire qu'il ne cherchera pas nécessairement à se refaire (Rosecrance, 1986 ;McCormack et Griffiths, 2012). Cela est en partie lié au fait que le joueur professionnel est bien plus à même que le joueur pathologique de se détacher émotionnellement du jeu. ...
... SD = 4.45). Their socio-demographic characteristics were similar to those found in previous studies (Barrault & Varescon, 2013a, 2013bHopley et al., 2012;LaPlante, Kleschinsky, LaBrie, Nelson, & Shaffer, 2009;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011;Meyer et al., 2013;Zaman, Geurden, De Cock, De Schutter, & Vanden Abeele, 2014; see Table 1). Table 2. themes identified and associated items of oPtS questionnaire, after the analysis of the 10 interviews with poker players and reading from a professional player. ...
... Nonetheless, it should be noted that we did not know if there were multiple responses from the same person. The socio-demographic characteristics of our sample are consistent with those of groups examined in other studies (Barrault & Varescon, 2013a, 2013bHopley, Dempsey, & Nicki, 2012;LaPlante et al., 2009;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011;Meyer et al., 2013;Zaman et al., 2014). However, the sample is composed of French poker players only and future research should replicate this study on populations in other countries. ...
Article
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Tilt in poker implies a deviation from an individual’s usual playing style, at a strategic, emotional and behavioural level. It is a specific characteristic of poker, which can affect all kinds of players with varying degrees of frequency. In addition, tilt could be a transitional form of pathological gambling behaviour and a gateway to addiction. The main objective of this research is therefore the design and validation of a measuring scale for tilt episode frequency in an online poker gamblers’ group. Twenty-one items based on the literature and interviews with 10 poker players were created. An online self-administered questionnaire was completed by 263 poker players to validate this scale. The mean age of the sample was 26.7 (SD = 4.45). The Online Poker Tilt Scale (OPTS) consists of 17 items and is the first validated tool for measuring the frequency of tilt episodes associated with online poker. It is composed of two factors: ‘emotional and behavioural tilt’ and ‘cognitive tilt’. Tilt seems to be an essential part of understanding online poker behaviour. This tool will enable researchers studying online poker addiction to perform research on the mechanisms and processes that lead to tilt and its consequences.
... Parke, Griffiths, & J. Parke, 2005). The skill element and the way the betting is organized together make it possible for some players to win in the long run unlike most forms of gambling (Bjerg, 2010;Laakasuo, Palomäki, & Salmela, 2015;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011). This is one of the main motivations for the players, but to develop these skills in poker requires substantial invested time than any other form of gambling (Laakasuo et al., 2015;Moreau, Chabrol, & Chauchard, 2016;Recher & Griffiths, 2012). ...
... To be successful as a player, one must keep up with one's opponents, and do so through two ways: frequent playing, and the consequent development of playing skills. The importance of investing time to develop poker skills has previously been discussed by several other authors (Jouhki, 2011;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011;Recher & Griffiths, 2012). An elaboration on this idea is to understand poker as a relative skill where the relevant ability is the player's skill compared to his or her opponents. ...
Article
Full-text available
Poker is a popular game, especially among male students. It is known to be highly time-consuming and might lead to players dropping out from education. Yet little is known about why it is so time-consuming. In this article, it is argued that developing and maintaining the requisite skill in poker is a continually ongoing process and the game is highly competitive. If a player is not capable of improving at the same or a higher rate as his or her opponents, that person will be bound to lose in the long run. Twelve young poker players and three “old-timers” were interviewed about changes in online poker and problems with combining poker and education. A thematic analysis was used, which concluded that prioritizing between poker and education can be understood in terms of a weight balance; if a student makes enough money from poker, then quitting school seems like a rational choice. If poker income decreases, then education becomes more important. Several of the informants have found themselves having to choose between poker and education. This study argues that poker has become more competitive and less popular in the last five years, making it harder to succeed as a professional player. Several of the informants described the poker population as more homogenous and with a higher level of skill than before. This, they claim, makes the game less profitable for the best players and that might reduce a student’s inclination to drop out of education. ResumeLe poker est un jeu populaire, particulièrement auprès des étudiants masculins. On sait qu’on peut y consacrer beaucoup de temps et que ce jeu peut même mener à l’abandon des études. On s’explique pourtant mal les raisons pour lesquelles les joueurs y consacrent tant de temps. Dans cet article, on explique que ce jeu est très compétitif et que pour maintenir et développer ses compétences, il faut s’y adonner de manière assidue. Si un joueur ne parvient pas à s’améliorer au même rythme que celui de ses adversaires ou à un rythme plus rapide, il perdra à long terme. Douze jeunes joueurs de poker et trois « vétérans » ont été sondés sur les changements dans le poker en ligne et les problèmes liés à la combinaison poker et études. On a utilisé une analyse thématique qui a permis de conclure que les priorités entre le poker et les études peuvent être comprises sur le plan de l’équilibre; si, par exemple, un étudiant fait assez d’argent au poker, quitter l’école semble alors être un choix rationnel. Si au contraire le revenu au poker diminue, les études deviennent alors plus importantes. Plusieurs personnes sondées ont révélé avoir eu à choisir entre le poker et les études. Cette étude fait aussi valoir que le poker est plus compétitif et moins populaire depuis les cinq dernières années, ce qui rend la réussite comme joueur professionnel d’autant plus difficile. Plusieurs ont décrit la population de joueurs comme étant plus homogène et ayant un niveau de compétence plus élevé qu’avant. Selon les répondants, le jeu serait devenu moins rentable pour les meilleurs joueurs, diminuant ainsi l’envie d’un étudiant d’abandonner ses études.
... Et tandis que le joueur social joue de manière récréative, le joueur professionnel, lui, joue de manière purement professionnelle. En effet, il considère le jeu comme son travail, celui-ci étant sa source principale de revenus (Radburn et Horsley, 2011 ;McCormack et Griffiths, 2012 ;Parke et Griffiths, 2012 ;Biolcati, Passini et Griffiths, 2015). Le jeu occupe d'ailleurs une place importante dans sa vie. ...
... Nous pouvons donner comme exemple le poker, qui nécessite une confiance en soi et un contrôle important pour bluffer (Parke et al., 2005). De plus, le joueur professionnel se comporte différemment face aux pertes financières dans le sens où il sera beaucoup moins dans la « chasse » des pertes, c'est-à-dire qu'il ne cherchera pas nécessairement à se refaire (Rosecrance, 1986 ;McCormack et Griffiths, 2012). Cela est en partie lié au fait que le joueur professionnel est bien plus à même que le joueur pathologique de se détacher émotionnellement du jeu. ...
Article
Gambling is a very ancient practice whose popularity continues to grow. How can we explain the craze for this activity? What is its function in the psychic economy of the subject? The question of the function of gambling refers in part to the issue of motivation of the subject to indulge in this activity (both conscious and unconscious motivation of the player). However, the motivation will be different according to the type of player (either the social gambler, cheat, professional or pathological gambler). In addition, the motivation will also be different depending on the pathological gambler and the type of game he plays. Indeed, several recent studies (mostly conducted on pathological gamblers) showed that the profile of players varied by the type of game they engaged in and in terms of socio-demographic data, personality traits and psychopathological dimensions. The study of the function of the game or the motivation of the player offers interesting perspectives in terms of research and practical application. Indeed, it allows one hand to improve the typology of players and so to better adapt the procedure for taking charge of these matters. Moreover, understanding the motivation and the link with the involvement in the game can also help improve prevention messages for gambling and money.
... Parke, Griffiths, & J. Parke, 2005). The skill element and the way the betting is organized together make it possible for some players to win in the long run unlike most forms of gambling (Bjerg, 2010;Laakasuo, Palomäki, & Salmela, 2015;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011). This is one of the main motivations for the players, but to develop these skills in poker requires substantial invested time than any other form of gambling (Laakasuo et al., 2015;Moreau, Chabrol, & Chauchard, 2016;Recher & Griffiths, 2012). ...
... To be successful as a player, one must keep up with one's opponents, and do so through two ways: frequent playing, and the consequent development of playing skills. The importance of investing time to develop poker skills has previously been discussed by several other authors (Jouhki, 2011;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011;Recher & Griffiths, 2012). An elaboration on this idea is to understand poker as a relative skill where the relevant ability is the player's skill compared to his or her opponents. ...
Article
Poker is a popular game, especially among male students. It is known to be highly time-consuming and might lead to players dropping out from education. Yet little is known about why it is so time-consuming. In this article, it is argued that developing and maintaining the requisite skill in poker is a continually ongoing process and the game is highly competitive. If a player is not capable of improving at the same or a higher rate as his or her opponents, that person will be bound to lose in the long run. Twelve young poker players and three ‘‘old-timers’’ were interviewed about changes in online poker and problems with combining poker and education. A thematic analysis was used, which concluded that prioritizing between poker and education can be understood in terms of a weight balance; if a student makes enough money from poker, then quitting school seems like a rational choice. If poker income decreases, then education becomes more important. Several of the informants have found themselves having to choose between poker and education. This study argues that poker has become more competitive and less popular in the last five years, making it harder to succeed as a professional player. Several of the informants described the poker population as more homogenous and with a higher level of skill than before. This, they claim, makes the game less profitable for the best players and that might reduce a student’s inclination to drop out of education. © 2018, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. All rights reserved.
... Although gambling, in general, remains a popular activity, participation in poker has risen significantly over the past decade (Dufour et al. 2015;McCormack and Griffiths 2012;Shead et al. 2008;Wood and Williams 2009). As a consequence, poker has now developed into a multi-million-dollar industry that attracts players from all over the globe (Liley and Rakow 2010;McCormack and Griffiths 2012;National Center for Responsible Gaming 2006;Shead et al. 2008;Wood and Williams 2009). ...
... Although gambling, in general, remains a popular activity, participation in poker has risen significantly over the past decade (Dufour et al. 2015;McCormack and Griffiths 2012;Shead et al. 2008;Wood and Williams 2009). As a consequence, poker has now developed into a multi-million-dollar industry that attracts players from all over the globe (Liley and Rakow 2010;McCormack and Griffiths 2012;National Center for Responsible Gaming 2006;Shead et al. 2008;Wood and Williams 2009). Dufour et al. (2015) argue that the availability and exposure of poker are key to its recent popularity as poker elicits "greater access through different forms (cash game or tournament) of the game, and wide media coverage" (p. ...
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This article examines the effect of gambling location on the frequency, expenditure, and time spent on cash game poker in relation to individual characteristics of gamblers. Data were drawn from a 2012 Québec epidemiological gambling survey. The quantitative analysis used multilevel methods to model the dual-level hierarchical design of gambling location (level 1) and individual characteristics nested within poker cash game players (level 2). The sample was comprised of 270 individuals aged 18 years and above and living in private homes, who reported gambling on poker cash games in the past 12 months. Participants reported their gambling habits in up to three locations: private homes, the casino, and the Internet. Demographic data included age, gender, education level, and income. Significant variation was reported between the three locations and the gameplay patterns variables, i.e. betting frequency, time, and spending. The most frequently reported gambling locations were private dwellings (87.4%), followed by casinos (15.9%), and the Internet (13.7%). Some interactions between location and the demographic variables were observed. Moreover, the multilevel analysis revealed an important relationship between the location and poker cash gambling behavior. This study reveals the significance of contextual factors as a fundamental element in gambling behaviors and highlights the need for prevention strategies that target specific high-risk contexts rather than individually based interventions.
... En fait, chez les joueurs de poker, une grande variabilité étiologique des problèmes de jeu semble présente (Bjerg, 2010). Le poker et ses adeptes professionnels et amateurs posent donc différents défi s tant en ce qui a trait à la compréhension de cette activité qu'aux trajectoires pouvant conduire au développement d'un problème de jeu (Bjerg, 2010 ;McCormack et Griffi ths, 2012). D'autres acteurs s'inquiètent aussi des méfaits possibles du poker. ...
... Sont-ils en mesure de nuancer et de voir les risques associés à cette activité ? Outre les rares études qualitatives s'étant intéressées à des joueurs de poker professionnels (Radburn et Horsley, 2011 ;McCormack et Griffi ths, 2012), peu d'études se sont attardées sur la vision et la compréhension de ce loisir du point de vue des joueurs considérés comme des acteurs sociaux (Debuyst, 1989). Or, le sens que les acteurs donnent à leur expérience (Savoie-Zajc, 1998) permet de comprendre les représentations et systèmes de valeurs propres à une sous-culture (Michelat, 1975). ...
... Skill in poker is often addressed as a unique and all-encompassing faculty (skilled players vs. non-skilled players). As recently declared by McCormack and Griffiths (2011), ''further research is clearly needed to identify which skills are at play'' (e.g., calculating probabilities or reading the opponents' tells). In other words, there is a need to explore which skills are involved in making a poker player a skilled player. ...
... Indeed, the literature on poker often seeks to determine whether poker is a game with or without skill (Dedonno & Detterman, 2008). Although this question is obviously very important, researchers have recognized that this binary vision is insufficient and now recommend exploring the distinct skill sets at play in poker (McCormack & Griffiths, 2011). The objective of the present study was to consider skill in poker in a naïve way and to build a repertoire of the competencies used by players while playing poker. ...
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The authors examined gamblers' perceptions of Texas Hold'Em (HE) poker, especially regarding excessive behaviours and the nature of skill involved. Sixteen regular HE gamblers were assessed through a semi-structured interview and took part in a session of gambling exposure. A qualitative thematic analysis and a comparative analysis on problem and social gamblers were performed. Problem gamblers had an emotional profile that was characterized by a lack of self-regulation and difficulties with delayed gratification. The desire to take on a new persona through poker seems to be implicated in excessive poker behaviours. Three kinds of skills came to the fore: technical skills (mastery of rules and strategies), psychological skills (self-regulation and accurate analysis of adversaries), and financial skills (the ability to correctly assess the financial risk). The results support the fact that poker deserves to be set apart from other gambling forms, especially when it comes to prevention and treatment.
... Over the past 15 years, the growth in poker participation globally has been unprecedented, and especially online poker (Chevalier & Pastinelli, 2008;European Council, 2012;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Shead, Hodgins, & Scharf, 2008;Wood & Williams, 2009). Poker brings together millions of players worldwide and is creating a multi-million-dollar industry (Bjerg, 2010;Fiedler & Wilcke, 2012). ...
... Moreover, it is not surprising that illusion of control was not predictive of gambling problems even if Barrault and Varescon (2013b) found the contrary. This result mirrors previous study findings that have demonstrated that irrational perceptions are not central to the experience of gambling problems among poker players (Bjerg, 2010;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012). Based on previous findings and the results of the current study, treatment approaches with poker players that aim to correct illusion of control could be considered questionable (Bjerg, 2010). ...
Article
Previous research has shown that poker players spend significant time, large amounts of money and have a high prevalence of gambling problems. While some studies have examined the association between gambling behaviours and passion, none have explored this association specifically among poker players. This study aims to examine the relationships between two types of passion (i.e. harmonious and obsessive) and severity of gambling problems among poker players. A sample of 159 poker players was recruited from across Quebec, Canada. The outcome variable of interest was participants’ scores on the Canadian Pathological Gambling Index and the predictive variable was the Gambling Passion Scale. Multiple logistic regression analyses were conducted to identify independent risk factors of at-risk poker players. Severity of gambling problems is positively associated with obsessive passion (p < .05). However, harmonious passion is not associated with gambling problems. These results align with previous findings obtained for other gambling activities. Thus, passion could be considered a useful tool when approaching players to talk about risk-taking.
... These have included national studies on adult internet gambling (e.g., Gambling Commission, 2008;Griffiths, 2001b;Griffiths, Wardle, Orford, Sproston, & Erens, 2009;Wardle, Moody, Griffiths, Orford, & Volberg, 2011), national studies on adolescent internet gambling (e.g., , regional studies of internet gamblers (e.g., Ialomiteanu & Adlaf, 2001;Wood & Williams, 2007), survey studies on self-selected samples of internet gamblers (e.g., Griffiths & Barnes, 2008;International Gaming Research Unit, 2007;Matthews, Farnsworth, & Griffiths, 2009;McCormack, Shorter, & Griffiths, 2013;Wood, Griffiths, & Parke, 2007), studies examining behavioral tracking data of internet gamblers from online gaming sites (e.g., Broda et al., 2008;Dragicevic, Tsogas, & Kudic, 2011;LaBrie, Kaplan, LaPlante, Nelson, and Shaffer, 2008;LaBrie, LaPlante, Nelson, Schumann, and Shaffer, 2007;), qualitative studies of internet gamblers (e.g., McCormack & Griffiths, 2012a;Parke & Griffiths, 2011, internet gambling case studies (Griffiths & Parke, 2007), studies examining very specific forms of gambling such as online poker (Griffiths, Parke, Wood, & Rigbye, 2010;Hopley & Nicki, 2011;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012b;Wood & Griffiths, 2008;, and studies examining internet gambling and social responsibility features (Auer & Griffiths, 2013;Griffiths, Wood, & Parke, 2009;Smeaton & Griffiths, 2004). Erens (2009, 2011) provided the first ever analysis of a representative national sample of internet gamblers. ...
Chapter
This chapter demonstrates that research into online gambling addiction, online gaming addiction, and (even more recently) online social networking addiction has proliferated over the last few years. These three online addictions were found to have negative consequences, that allow for the behavior to be classified as pathological as based on established clinical standards. It has been claimed that remote types of gambling have provided the biggest cultural shift in gambling in the past decade and that the introduction of internet gambling has the potential to lead to increased levels of problematic gambling behavior. There are now an increasingly growing number of studies on internet gambling that range widely in focus and methodological scope. Research into addiction to the internet (rather than addictions on the internet) suggests that it does indeed exist but that it affects only a very small minority of users.
... However, although the prevalence of pathological gambling is high in our sample, SOGS scores are relatively low, notably compared to McCormack and Griffiths' (2012) finding that online gambling is perceived by gamblers as more addictive than offline gambling. This may be due to the fact that the sample is constituted of volunteer participants (severe pathological gamblers could be reluctant to participate in such studies) or maybe poker players display less severe gambling pathologies than other types of gamblers. ...
Article
The aims of this study are to assess impulsive sensation seeking among online poker players and to study the links between impulsive sensation seeking and gambling practice. One hundred and eighty (180) regular online poker players (i.e. playing at least once a week for a minimum duration of one year) completed three self-report scales on line assessing pathological gambling (SOGS), poker practice (poker questionnaire) and impulsive sensation seeking (ImpSS scale). Based on the SOGS scores, participants were divided into three groups: non-pathological gamblers (n = 112), problem gamblers (n = 37) and pathological gamblers (n = 31). The impulsive sensation seeking scores of all the poker players are high. They all display high levels of sensation seeking, regardless of their intensity of gambling. However, pathological gamblers are more impulsive than problem and non-pathological gamblers. Impulsivity is a good predictor for pathological gambling. Online poker players are high sensation seekers who gamble to experience strong feelings and arousal, whereas impulsivity plays an important role in developing and maintaining pathological gambling. This study underlines the psychological specificities of online poker players and the need to take into account impulsive sensation seeking not only in the research on pathological gambling poker players but also in the development of preventive action. (c) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
... These have included national studies on adult internet gambling (e.g., Gambling Commission, 2008;Griffiths, 2001b;Griffiths, Wardle, Orford, Sproston, & Erens, 2009;Wardle, Moody, Griffiths, Orford, & Volberg, 2011), national studies on adolescent internet gambling (e.g., , regional studies of internet gamblers (e.g., Ialomiteanu & Adlaf, 2001;Wood & Williams, 2007), survey studies on self-selected samples of internet gamblers (e.g., Griffiths & Barnes, 2008;International Gaming Research Unit, 2007;Matthews, Farnsworth, & Griffiths, 2009;McCormack, Shorter, & Griffiths, 2013;Wood, Griffiths, & Parke, 2007), studies examining behavioral tracking data of internet gamblers from online gaming sites (e.g., Broda et al., 2008;Dragicevic, Tsogas, & Kudic, 2011;LaBrie, Kaplan, LaPlante, Nelson, and Shaffer, 2008;LaBrie, LaPlante, Nelson, Schumann, and Shaffer, 2007;), qualitative studies of internet gamblers (e.g., McCormack & Griffiths, 2012a;Parke & Griffiths, 2011, internet gambling case studies (Griffiths & Parke, 2007), studies examining very specific forms of gambling such as online poker (Griffiths, Parke, Wood, & Rigbye, 2010;Hopley & Nicki, 2011;McCormack & Griffiths, 2012b;Wood & Griffiths, 2008;, and studies examining internet gambling and social responsibility features (Auer & Griffiths, 2013;Griffiths, Wood, & Parke, 2009;Smeaton & Griffiths, 2004). Erens (2009, 2011) provided the first ever analysis of a representative national sample of internet gamblers. ...
... Therefore, interaction with an antisocial peer group may reinforce problem behaviours such as PG, resulting in their persistence. Similarly, drinking alcohol while gambling is common (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012), and may result in impulsivity and impaired decision making, as well as spending more money and staying at gambling venues longer than intended (Dickerson & Baron, 2000). This may lead to reinforcement of gambling problems, resulting in their persistence. ...
Article
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There is instability in the developmental course of problem gambling [PG] over time; however, studies that examine PG at an aggregate level obscure these variations. The current study employed data from a longitudinal study of Australian young adults to investigate: 1) PG patterns (i.e., resistance, persistence, desistence, and new incidence); 2) prospective risk and protective factors for these patterns; and 3) behavioural outcomes associated with these patterns. A sample of 2261 young adults (55.73% female) from Victoria, Australia, who were part of the International Youth Development Study completed a survey in 2010 (T1, age 21) and 2012 (T2, age 23) measuring PG (two items based on established measures), risk and protective factors, and behavioural outcomes. The majority of the sample (91.69%) were resistors (no PG at T1 and T2), 3.62% were new incidence PG cases, 2.63% were desistors (PG at T1 but not T2), and 2.07% reported persistent PG at T1 and T2. Individual civic activism was protective of new incidence PG, while affiliation with antisocial peers and frequent alcohol use increased the risk of persistence. Persistent problem gamblers also experienced the greatest number of poor behavioural outcomes at T2. New incidence was associated with internalising symptoms at T2, while desistance was not associated with any behavioural outcomes. In conclusion, each PG pattern was associated with different predictors and outcomes, highlighting the need to consider variation in the course of young adult PG in order to provide efficacious prevention and intervention approaches, and to protect against relapse.
... These characteristics are typically associated with problematic gambling behavior (e.g. Bjerg 2011;McCormack and Griffiths 2012;McCormack et al. 2013). ...
Article
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Many studies suggest that in poker, amount of money wagered and time spent playing are prominent predictors of problem gambling. These observations are in discord with anecdotal and empirical evidence. Due to the skill component inherent in poker, active players who play for long hours attempting to make a profit—sometimes by wagering large amounts of money—might be labeled as problem gamblers despite having high levels of well-being and financial stability. In three online correlative studies, we assessed the associations between poker experience, problem gambling (as indicated by the South Oaks Gambling Screen [SOGS] and the Problem Gambling Severity Index [PGSI]) and various measures of social and emotional well-being, self-control and emotion regulation. Problem-gambling severity predicts reduced well-being and self-control, increased social anomie, and detrimental emotion regulation. Experienced poker players exhibited high problem-gambling severity, but none of the adverse consequences thereof. Thus, a discrepancy was exposed concerning the validity of SOGS and PGSI. We conclude that these measures may not be valid in assessing problematic/detrimental gambling in poker-playing populations, especially in the case of experienced players, who play for long hours in order to make money. The concepts of problem gambling and poker experience should be disentangled.
... Wood and Griffiths (2008), using a methodology based on group interview sessions, showed that regular non-professional poker players play for the overall experience (easy to learn online, low stake size, convenience, reducing boredom, and getting excitement and social interactions) whereas professional poker players are more motivated by financial winning. McCormack and Griffiths (2012) showed that professional players were more involved in poker playing (longer gambling sessions and 'multi-tabling') and were more disciplined in their gambling behaviour (especially by being more likely to be logical, taking fewer risks and being less likely to chase losses and show signs of lack of control) than non-professional players. These studies provide interesting information about poker playing. ...
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Poker is now one of the most popular types of online gambling, mostly because of its particular structural characteristics. This study aims to investigate the representations of regular poker players of the game's special features, along with their probable links with tilt (i.e. loss of control during the game) and problem gambling. Twenty-three regular poker players recruited online took part in a research interview. All interviews were recorded and fully transcribed. A quantitative lexical analysis was performed using the software Alceste®. Six classes were identified, encompassing 73% of the whole corpus. The main themes were chance vs. skill, sensations and emotions linked to poker, discovery of poker, tilt, differences between live and online gambling, and risks of excessive poker involvement. The experience of tilt appears to be an important feature of poker. Poker players also tended to report more emotional and social aspects of problem gambling than financial consequences. The results underline the structural specificities of poker through the player's representations. The role of emotions and sensations in poker, as they are both sought by the players and involved in the loss of control, may have an influence on the development and maintenance of problem gambling.
... Profissionalização eM uM jogo de habilidade O número de jogadores de pôquer, online e offline, vem crescendo ao longo dos anos (2). Estimativas da indústria do pôquer online afirmam que, em 2014, esse foi um negócio de 2 bilhões de euros (3). ...
... Although some previous studies of poker player populations have demonstrated significant positive relationships between substance use (McCormack & Griffiths, 2012;Mihaylova, Kairouz, & Nadeau, 2013) or mental health and gambling problems (Hopley & Nicki, 2010;Mitrovic & Brown, 2009;Shead et al., 2008), those findings are not supported by the present study, where neither substance use nor mental health problems are in fact associated with at-risk gambling behaviours among women poker players. However, given the small sample of women recruited in this study, it is wise to remain cautious in asserting that, in actuality, no link exists. ...
Article
Poker players are at high risk of experiencing gambling problems. Despite the feminization of gambling, little is known about the problems associated with poker playing among women. This cross-sectional study aims to examine relationships between gambling problems and factors generally associated with gambling problems (gambling behaviours, substance use and mental health) among women poker players. A total of 46 women were recruited through a broader prospective cohort study from the province of Quebec, Canada. The outcome variable of interest was participants’ scores on the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI); the predictive variables were gambling behaviours, alcohol and drug misuse (DEBA-Alcohol and drugs) and mental health (Beck anxiety and depression). Multiple logistic regression analyses revealed that the factors associated with gambling problems among women poker players are distinct from those of men. For women, severity of gambling problems is positively associated with Internet poker playing, playing slot machines and smoking cigarettes (p < .05). However, among these women, alcohol and drug misuse and mental health are not associated with gambling problems. Therefore, it is important to understand the risks associated with women poker players to develop preventive strategies adapted for this population and to adjust interventions accordingly.RésuméLes joueurs de poker sont une population à risque de présenter des problèmes de jeu. Malgré la féminisation des jeux de hasard et d’argent (JHA), les connaissances sont limitées quant aux problèmes liés au poker chez les femmes. Cette étude transversale vise à documenter le lien entre les problèmes de jeu et les facteurs généralement associés aux problèmes de jeu (comportements de jeu, consommation de substances et santé mentale) chez les joueuses de poker. Au total, 46 femmes ont été recrutées dans le cadre d'une étude de cohorte prospective plus large réalisée dans la province de Québec, au Canada. Le score à l'Indice Canadien du Jeu Excessif (ICJE) était la variable dépendante; les variables prédictives étaient les comportements de jeu, l'abus d'alcool et de drogues (DEBA-Alcool et Drogues) et la santé mentale (Inventaire d’anxiété et de dépression de Beck). Les analyses de régression logistique ont révélé que les facteurs associés aux problèmes de jeu chez les joueuses de poker sont distincts de ceux des hommes. Pour les femmes, la gravité des problèmes de jeu est positivement associée à jouer au poker sur Internet, à jouer aux machines à sous et à fumer des cigarettes (p < 0,05). Toutefois, chez ces femmes, ni l'abus d'alcool et de drogues, ni la santé mentale ne sont pas associés aux problèmes de jeu. Il est donc important de comprendre les risques associés aux problèmes de jeu chez les joueuses de poker afin de développer des stratégies de prévention adaptées à cette population et d'ajuster les interventions en conséquence.
... En fait, chez les joueurs de poker, une grande variabilité étiologique des problèmes de jeu semble présente (Bjerg, 2010). Le poker et ses adeptes professionnels et amateurs posent donc différents défis en ce qui a trait aux facteurs de risques pouvant conduire au développement d'un problème de jeu (Bjerg, 2010 ;McCormack et Griffiths, 2012). ...
Article
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Le poker est le jeu de hasard et d’argent ayant connu la plus grande progression dans les dernières années. Certains joueurs de poker québécois investissent beaucoup de temps et d’argent dans cette activité. Or, les motivations sont étroitement liées aux habitudes de jeu et même à la sévérité des conséquences qui y sont associées. Des entrevues semi-structurées ont été effectuées auprès de vingt joueurs de poker afin d’explorer les motivations amenant les joueurs de poker à pratiquer cette activité. Les résultats montrent que les joueurs distinguent le poker des autres jeux de hasard et d’argent en mettant l’accent sur les habiletés et la stratégie présentes au poker. Ils jouent au poker pour avoir du plaisir, pour l’aspect social, la stimulation intellectuelle, la compétition, l’adrénaline et l’appât du gain, pour passer le temps et, certains, pour en faire une éventuelle carrière. Les entretiens ont également permis de mettre en lumière de nombreuses fluctuations dans les motivations. Les motivations sont dynamiques en fonction de la modalité de pratique du poker et du moment dans la trajectoire de jeu du participant.
... A major difference between professional poker players and recreational poker players is that professionals are more aware of the importance of table selection and finding the right (i.e. weak) opponents (Kristensson & Larsson, 2006;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011). However, as Dufour et al. (2015) note in their study, poker players are not a homogeneous group. ...
Article
How does governance affect the operative behaviour of gambling sites? We conjecture that differences in governance primarily cause pricing differences among gambling sites. This paper presents an analysis of the purpose and implications of rake policy differences between privately owned for-profit and state-owned non-profit poker web sites. Specifically, the paper comprises a comparative case study analysis of Svenska Spel Poker, owned by the Swedish state, and the commercial site PokerStars. The analysis focuses on the range of different types of single table Sit and Go tournaments offered at each site. We observe two main differences between the sites with respect to rake. First, PokerStars uses a rather complex formula to determine the rake percentage based on variables such as tournament speed, stakes, and size while Svenska Spel uses the same rake percentage for all Sit and Go tournaments regardless of speed and stakes but with a 50 percent discount if the tournament is played heads-up. Second, PokerStars charges less rake than Svenska Spel except for the lowest stakes. We discuss the effects and purpose of these rake policy differences from four different perspectives: 1) the individual player, 2) the player collective, 3) the poker market, and 4) society. The overall conclusion is that these different perspectives cause conflicting opinions on the 'goodness' of the sites. Our study also highlights the difficulties experienced by a state-owned gambling site in balancing social and corporate goals
... The Play Summary message also serves as a reminder to Skill Game Gamblers to be mindful of their sessions and expenditure. Recreational Skill Game Gamblers can exhibit impulsive personality traits and may demonstrate signs of chasing behaviors [108][109][110], and this message may encourage them to use the Play Summary tool as a means of keeping themselves aware of expenditure resulting from such behavior. ...
Article
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Background Responsible gambling messages are widely used as a tool to enable informed choice and encourage appropriate gambling behavior. It is generally accepted that gamblers have different levels of risk of developing gambling problems and require various harm minimization tools and resources. Therefore, it is reasonable to expect that responsible gambling messages should be customized and target specific groups of gamblers. This project aimed to understand hypothesized differences between cohorts of gamblers and receive qualitative feedback on archetypal targeted messages used to increase use of responsible gambling tools. Methods Focus groups were held to test messages for specific cohorts: young adults (18–24 years), seniors (60+ years), frequent gamblers (weekly), and gamblers of skill-based games (poker, sports betting). Results Cohorts exhibited different preferences and responses to message archetypes. Seniors preferred messages about limit setting, whilst young adults and frequent gamblers responded to messages about their own play and expertise. Skill game gamblers were interested in the odds of winning and their own outcomes over time. However, all groups agreed that using positive, non-judgmental language in messaging is important. Conclusions This research makes an important contribution to the field by demonstrating that the wording of message content will likely influence the effectiveness of such messages differentially across various groups of gamblers for engaging gamblers in harm reduction tools. Guidance is provided on themes that can be used by public health marketers. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (10.1186/s12889-018-6281-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
... For example, in Macao, people working in gambling and related industries earn a higher salary [76], and their nominal wage has increased as a result of casino liberalization [77]. Further, a few studies have shown that for some (especially poker players), although a minority, gambling is a significant income source [78][79][80]. ...
Article
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Background: Gambling for money is a popular leisure time activity in most countries, which has major social and economic impacts not only affecting the gambler, but his/her significant others, and the society. Gambling impact studies can help researchers and policymakers compare the health and social costs and benefits of different gambling policies and can be used when considering which gambling policies will reduce or increase costs or benefits the most. In a public health approach, the impacts of gambling, negative and positive, are assessed across the entire severity spectrum of the activity. Although some studies have created basic principles for conducting impact studies, a theoretical model is currently lacking. The aim of this debate is to review complementing and contrasting views on the effects of gambling to create a conceptual model, where a public health perspective is applied. Main text: The effects of gambling can be structuralized using a conceptual model, where impacts are divided into negative and positive; costs and benefits. Costs and benefits are categorized into three classes: financial, labor and health, and well-being. These classes manifest in personal, interpersonal, and societal levels. Individual impacts cause effects on a personal level to gamblers themselves. External impacts influence the interpersonal and society/community levels and concern other people. The temporal level refers to the development, severity and scope of the gambling impact. These include general impacts, impacts of problem gambling and long-term impacts of gambling. Conclusions: The conceptual model offers a base on which to start building common methodology for assessing the impact of gambling on the society. While measuring monetary impacts is not always straightforward, the main issue is how to measure the social impacts, which are typically ignored in calculations, as are personal and interpersonal impacts. The reviewed empirical work largely concentrated on the costs of gambling, especially costs on the community level. The Model can be used to identify areas where research is scarce. Filling the gaps in knowledge is essential in forming a balanced evidence base on the impacts of gambling. Ideally, this evidence could be the starting point in formulating public policies on gambling.
... Likewise and as expected, the lure of monetary gain and the easy accessibility of poker on the Internet were two elements that were deemed to foster an increase in gambling (Gainsbury et al. 2012;Griffiths and Barnes 2008;Griffiths et al. 2009;McCormack et al. 2014;McBride and Derevensky 2009;. Other elements that were reported by the gamblers in this study-such as the social aspect of gambling and playing poker as a profession-are also in keeping with previous studies which have noted their influence on gambling habits (Biolcati et al. 2015;Hing et al. 2012;McCormack and Griffiths 2012). However, some reasons to increase or decrease may have been overshadowed by the players due to the social desirability present in this type of study. ...
Article
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Poker playing is a concern because of the large amounts of money spent and the high prevalence of gambling problems. Few studies have taken an interest in poker players’ (PPs’) perspectives. The goal of this qualitative study was to describe PPs’ perceptions of the change in their poker playing and to compare their perception to the variation in the score of a screening tool. A convenience sample of 25 PPs participated in a qualitative interview and completed the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI) 2 years in a row. Of these 25 PPs, 19 perceived a decrease in their poker habits, three perceived an increase, and the other three, no change. The perception of 60% of the PPs was inconsistent with the PGSI; most of those who perceived a decrease in fact had an increase. This study highlights how difficult it is for gamblers to be aware of the changes in their gambling and the importance to develop tools for responsible gambling. These tools would allow gamblers to become aware of their current gambling habits and their evolution.
... This limits the generalization of the present results to online poker players willing to participate in poker studies. The overall characteristics of the present sample (age, professional situation, gender) are similar to those reported in other studies made on the poker players population (Barrault & Varescon, 2013a, 2013bHopley, Dempse, & Nicki, 2012;LaPlante, Kleschinsky, LaBrie, Nelson, & Shaffer, 2009;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011;Meyer et al., 2013;Zaman, Geurden, De Cock, De Schutter, & Vanden Abeele, 2014). A second limitation is related to the underrepresentation of female players with a low playing frequency, in the French sample in particular, where half of the female participants played at least once a day. ...
Article
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Tilt in poker is a phenomenon characterized by a loss of control. Tilt could be a risk factor for the development of problematic gambling in poker. To monitor the frequency of tilt episodes during online poker sessions, the Online Poker Tilt Scale (OPTS) was created within the French population. The aim of this study was to develop a short version of this scale, one that was faster to complete, and therefore more appropriate for the online poker player population, which was characterized by an impulsive personality and low survey participation rate. The short version is composed of nine items split into two factors (cognitive regulation and emotional regulation). The OPTS-9 version displayed good psychometric qualities and its scores were strongly correlated with those of the original version. Moreover, this shorter version allows rebalancing of the scale's factorial structure, which facilitates interpretation of the results. This revised scale will measure the relative frequency of tilt episodes and allow to appropriately study the links between problem gambling and tilt episodes. This shortened 9-item version could be included in future experimental studies, as well as in prevention and treatment programs. Résumé L'inclinaison (tilt) au jeu de poker est un phénomène caractérisé par une perte de contrôle. Elle pourrait être un facteur de risque pour le développement d'un jeu xx Journal of Gambling Issues Volume 44, Month 2020 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/xxx-xxxx-xx http://igi.camh.net/doi/pdf/xxxx pathologique au poker. Pour suivre la fréquence des épisodes d'inclinaison pendant les séances de poker en ligne, l'échelle Online Poker Tilt Scale (OPTS) a été créée au sein de la population franc¸aise. Le but de cette étude était de développer une version courte de cette échelle, plus rapide à remplir, donc plus appropriée pour la population de joueurs de poker en ligne qui se caractérise par une personnalité impulsive et un faible taux de participation à des sondages. La version courte est composée de neuf éléments répartis en deux facteurs (régulation cognitive et régulation émotionnelle). La version OPTS-9 présente de bonnes qualités psychométriques et ses pointages sont fortement corrélés avec les pointages de la version originale. De plus, cette version courte permet de rééquilibrer la structure factorielle de l'échelle, ce qui facilite l'interprétation des résultats. Cette échelle révisée mesurera la fréquence relative des épisodes d'inclinaison et permettra d'étudier de fac¸on adéquate les liens entre le jeu pathologique et les épisodes d'inclinaison. Cette version raccourcie à neuf éléments pourrait être incluse dans les futures études expérimentales, ainsi que dans les programmes de prévention et de traitement.
... Here is an example of an online poker tilt characteristic not shared with traditional poker, since it requires the use of a computer: "I click faster and hit the keyboard harder". There is a negative link between the severity of tilting and poker playing experience, and a negative link between players' experience and problem gambling [5,[17][18][19]. It also seems that the more skilled a poker player is, the more capable they are of regulating their behavior and emotions [5,20]. ...
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Online poker is a form of gambling where an element of skill may influence the outcome of the game. ‘Tilt’ in poker describes an episode during which the player can no longer control their game by rational decisions. It leads to a loss of control over the game, a loss of emotional regulation, higher cognitive distortion, and a loss of money. This phenomenon, experienced by most players, could be the gateway to excessive gambling. The aim of this study was to assess the links between the frequency of tilt episodes, cognitive distortion, anxiety, depression, sensation seeking and excessive online poker gambling. Our sample is composed of 291 online poker players, with a mean age of 33.8 years (SD = 10.6). Participants completed an online self-assessment questionnaire, measuring the frequency of tilt episodes, cognitive distortion, anxiety, depression and impulsivity. The findings indicated that the frequency of tilt episodes and cognitive distortion were the only significant predictors of excessive online gambling (respectively, r = 0.49 and r = 0.20). Tilt frequency and cognitive distortion were strongly correlated (GRCS, r = 0.60), moderate to low correlations were found for tilt and anxiety (HADS, r = 0.40), and positive and negative urgency (UPPS, r = 0.27). To date, tilt has seldom been studied, and could improve our understanding of online poker gamblers. It could be a new means of identifying at risk gamblers, and thus facilitating preventive measures specifically adapted to this population.
... From a problem gambling perspective, future research should focus on esport players' psychological vulnerability, as some studies have begun to investigate the difference between problematic and professional gambling (Hing et al. 2016;Weinstock et al. 2013). According to research focused on the different ways of gambling on the same activity, McCormack and Griffiths (2012) noted, very little empirical research exists investigating professional gamblers who rely upon skill, knowledge, and playing in a more disciplined way than players who only seek entertainment. Further research has observed some identical characteristics which differentiate problematic gamblers and professional gamblers. ...
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Recently, the skill involved in playing and mastering video games has led to the professionalization of the activity in the form of ‘esports’ (electronic sports). The aim of the present paper was to review the main topics of psychological interest about esports and then to examine the similarities of esports to professional and problem gambling. As a result of a systematic literature search, eight studies were identified that had investigated three topics: (1) the process of becoming an esport player, (2) the characteristics of esport players such as mental skills and motivations, and (3) the motivations of esport spectators. These findings draw attention to the new research field of professional video game playing and provides some preliminary insight into the psychology of esports players. The paper also examines the similarities between esport players and professional gamblers (and more specifically poker players). It is suggested that future research should focus on esport players’ psychological vulnerability because some studies have begun to investigate the difference between problematic and professional gambling and this might provide insights into whether the playing of esports could also be potentially problematic for some players.
... Another recent study by McCormack and Griffiths (2012) attempts to provide an explanation for a fairly new phenomenon: some users earn their living by playing poker. The authors attempt to explain the differences between the behavior and attitudes of professional (extrinsically-motivated) and recreational (intrinsically-motivated) poker players. ...
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An online poker site is a good example of a dual-purposed information system that is used for both fun and making money. In this study, we address the platform selection problem associated with online poker sites by investigating the features online gamers value when selecting a platform. We test the differences in preferences for online gaming platforms between two types of users: primarily extrinsically-motivated and primarily intrinsically-motivated players. Surprisingly, when comparing the importance scores of the features (usability, enjoyment, functionalities, poker network, loyalty program, and reputation), we observe very little difference between the two user groups. The only difference was that loyalty programs were valued considerably more by extrinsically-motivated players. One would have expected that features such as functionalities, poker network, and reputation would dominate the choice calculus for extrinsically-motivated players and that features such as usability and enjoyment would dominate the choice calculus for intrinsically-motivated players. We interpret this surprising finding as providing support to the claim that utilitarian and hedonic values are becoming increasingly intertwined. In this article, we provide alternative interpretations for this surprising result and discuss its theoretical and managerial implications. Because this is an exploratory study, we also note several avenues for future research.
... The skills used in poker, such as the ability to inhibit one's emotions, exhibit patience, adapt the game according to an opponents' skill level, and take risks if needed, are often considered a unique dimension: a general ability in poker (Croson, Fishman, & Pope, 2008;Dedonno & Detterman, 2008;Turner & Fritz, 2001). Nevertheless, this binary view of poker performance is considered by some authors to be largely insufficient, and they suggest exploring different cognitive, emotional and social skills implemented in poker (Bouju, Grall-Bronnec, Quistrebert-Davanne, Hardouin, & V enisse, 2013;McCormack & Griffiths, 2011). ...
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Background and aims Strategic games, such as poker, require gamblers to develop several skills to perform better than others and to expect a potential gain. Players must remain as unpredictable and unreadable as possible by inhibiting the expression of their emotions in response to both good and bad poker events. The aim of the present study was to compare several aspects of the inhibition process in experienced poker gamblers and controls to better understand how inhibitory control is involved in poker performance. Methods Thirty experienced non-pathological poker gamblers (EG) and thirty healthy controls with no or limited poker experience (HC) completed 3 cognitive tasks. Each task measured a specific type of inhibition: motor inhibition [Go/No-Go task], verbal inhibition [Hayling Sentence Completion Task] and expressive inhibition [expressive suppression task, which combines subjective, expressive (facial EMG) and physiological (skin conductance, heart interbeat interval, cardiovascular and respiratory activation) measures of emotional experience]. Linear mixed models with random effects were performed. Results Inhibitory control skills were similar between the two groups, regardless of the form of inhibition tested. The only difference observed in EG was a higher ability to partially suppress the physiological expression of emotion. However, this difference was only present for negative and positive emotional induction and was not maintained for emotional induction related to poker situations. Discussion and conclusions The development of specific inhibition skills in experienced poker gamblers was not supported and raises questions about the transferability of poker skills previously discussed in the literature.
... Further research is also needed to better understand the absence of an association between screen time and the tendency to play the SCG of poker. Some findings from investigations of monetary gambling have noted that recreational poker play tends to be characterized by shorter play times, perhaps due to the taxing nature of the game [98,99]. As a result, it is possible that participation in the SCG of poker-a form of recreational poker-does not entail considerable daily screen exposure. ...
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Background With the proliferation of social casino games (SCGs) online, which offer the opportunity to gamble without monetary gains and losses, comes a growing concern regarding the effects of these unregulated games on public health, particularly among adolescents. However, given the limited research pertaining to SCG use, little is currently known about the manner in which adolescents engage with this new gambling medium. The present study aims to identify the factors that characterize adolescent social casino gamers, and to determine whether these factors differ by SCG type. Moreover, the study examines the extent to which social casino gaming is associated with monetary gambling and problem gambling in this cohort. Method Data were obtained from students in Grades 9 to 12 (n = 10,035) residing in the Canadian provinces of Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland and Labrador. Participants completed the Youth Gambling Survey (YGS), which is a supplementary instrument administered alongside the Canadian Student Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs Survey (CSTADS). Logistic regression was used to assess the factors associated with SCG play. Results Overall, 12.4% of respondents reported having participated in SCGs in the past three months. Compared to adolescents who did not report playing SCGs, SCG players were typically more likely to participate in monetary gambling activities, and were more prevalently classified as problem gamblers of low-to-moderate severity or high severity. Although profiles of SCG players differed across SCG game types, factors significantly associated with the playing of SCGs were gender, weekly spending money, having friends and parents who gamble, and screen time. It was also shown that current smokers were significantly more likely to participate in simulated slots online relative to adolescents who did not play SCGs. Conclusion Significant associations exist between SCG play, monetary gambling, and problem gambling among adolescents. Gambling intervention efforts directed at this population should aim to identify personal and environmental factors associated with social casino gaming, and should be tailored to different types of SCGs.
... One of the reasons for the large interest in poker by people living in larger cities may be media coverage, which is more exposed in large cities, with an extensive network of public places for entertainment. The messages concerned mainly refer to high wins in poker tournaments that are won only a handful of professional players-that is, those for whom poker is a livelihood, who care about the high level of play and are characterized by a number of features and skills required to attain good results in the game (Hopley et al. 2014;McCormack and Griffiths 2011). The group particularly susceptible to media reports are people of young age (Jensen and Arnett 2012), in which, according to the earlier research, playing poker frequently begins (Pawelec et al. 2015). ...
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Many variables predisposing to gambling and problem gambling are already known. Yet, little is still known about the factors associated with poker, which is one of the most popular and the fastest growing areas of gambling, especially among young people. The aim of our study was to identify the relationship of selected sociodemographic factors with playing poker and problematic gambling. The other gambling activities was also included. The results of the regression analysis demonstrated that the following variables were connected with playing poker: place of residence (p < 0.001), mother's education (p = 0.004) and that of father (p = 0.046), material status, both of family of origin and current, and financial independence (p < 0.001). The risk of problem gambling is higher in case of players with low assessment of their own current material status (p = 0.028) and those who are financially dependent (p = 0.046). The risk level of problem gambling is also associated with the poker players' involvement in: slot machine games, sports betting, Totalizator Sportowy (Lotto) games, casino games (for all variables, the significance level is p < 0.001). The acquired data helped us to identify the groups most exposed to playing poker and excessive involvement in the game and may contribute to the development of appropriate prevention programs to protect persons belonging to the risk group.
... With respect to illusion of control, cross-sectional studies reported also divergent data on the association with gambling problems. Indeed, while one study identified erroneous beliefs as a risk factor in poker players (Barrault and Varescon 2013b), other studies have called this result into question, particularly due to the role of strategy in poker (Bjerg 2010;McCormack and Griffiths 2012). In this study, illusion of control was not predictive of gambling problems trajectories. ...
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Despite the popularity in poker-related activities in recent years, few studies have focused on the evolution of gambling habits of poker players over a long period of time. The aim of this study is to examine factors influencing trajectories of poker players. The results are based on data collected at a four-time measurement of a prospective cohort study conducted in Quebec (n = 304 poker players). A latent class growth analysis was performed to identify trajectories based on the Problem Gambling Severity Index score. Multinomial multivariable logistic regression analyses were conducted to determine the correlates of gambling trajectories. Over the 3 years of the study, three gambling problem trajectories were identified, comprising one decreasing trajectory (1st: non-problematic—diminishing), one stable trajectory (2nd: low risk—stable), and one increasing trajectory (3th: problem gamblers—increasing). Internet as the main poker form and number of game played were associated with at-risk trajectories. Depression symptoms were significant predictors of the third trajectory whereas impulsivity predicted the second trajectory. This study shows that the risk is remaining low over years for the vast majority of poker players. However, the vulnerable poker players at the beginning of the study remain on a problematic increasing trajectory. It is therefore important to prioritize individuals in the third trajectory for interventions.
... Previous studies have focused on the comparison of professional, hobby, and problem gamblers [25,26], finding that the frequency and intensity of gambling can be similar in these groups. Compared to professional gamblers, problem gamblers show poorer psychosocial functioning [25], as well as less discipline, skill, and knowledge in their playing style [27]. Furthermore, problematic behavior and psychiatric distress can appear among all types of intensive gambling including professionals [26,28,29]. ...
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Research examining the relationship between gaming disorder, gaming motivations, and mental health is increasing, but the types of gaming use, such as recreational gaming and esports are not commonly distinguished. The present study compared recreational gamers and esport gamers (N = 4284) on a number of variables including game time, gaming motivations, severity of gaming disorder, and psychiatric symptoms. Additionally, the mediating effect of gaming motivations among esport and recreational gamers between psychiatric distress and problematic gaming was examined. Results showed that esport gamers spent significantly more time playing video games both on weekdays and weekend days than recreational gamers. Moreover, esport gamers had higher scores on social, competition, and skill development gaming motivations than recreational gamers. The mediation model demonstrated a significant positive direct and significant mediated effect via escapism (i.e., gaming excessively to avoid real life problems) between the higher levels of psychiatric distress and gaming disorder. However, esport and recreational gamers showed no significant differences in the model. The escapism motive appeared to be the common predictor of problematic gaming among both esport and recreational gamers. Future studies should focus on exploring escapism's mechanism in different subgroups of gamers in relation to problematic gaming to help the development of prevention, intervention, and treatment programs.
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The relationship between problem gambling and homelessness is a little studied area in the gambling studies field. A recent study by Sharman et al. (J Gambl Stud, doi: 10.1007/s10899-014-9444-7, 2014) is the first quantitative study in Great Britain on this interesting and important topic. In this context, the study is to be commended and provides an empirical benchmark on which other studies can build. The study reported a problem gambling prevalence rate of 11.6 % and is significantly higher than the problem gambling rate of the general population in Great Britain (which is <1 %). However, given the political sensitivity surrounding the expansion of bookmakers in the UK, the study needs further contextualization otherwise the findings of such studies may be used by anti-gambling lobby groups to serve their own political agendas. While it is good that such an area has been empirically investigated in Great Britain, this paper briefly (1) places the issue of problem gambling among the homeless into the wider context of problems among the homeless more generally (particularly in relation to mental health problems and other addictive behaviors), (2) highlights some of the methodological problems and weaknesses of the study, and (3) notes a number of factual errors made in the paper.
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The reality of eSports is something much more complex than individual users playing video games. There are several characteristics that eSports have in common with traditional sports: from the spirit of competition, to the structural composition of the teams, to the increase in performance with training and practice, up to the injuries and physical and psychological stress of the athlete. The number of scientific papers interested in this reality is still relatively low, although in recent years there has been a significant increase in this regard. Probably the lack of knowledge of the world of eSports by inexperts can represent an initial obstacle in the approach to this environment. Therefore, an all-round analysis of the Sports industry is fundamental: including the figures that characterize them, the different eSports disciplines, the possible physical and mental consequences for athletes. Emphasizing the similarities between electronic and non-electronic sports is essential in order to make people, and the scientific community in particular, understand how they should be considered equal to the "traditional" vision of sports especially in the need for professional medical support. The number of professional and amateur eSports players increase every day as well as the birth of professional organizations and national teams while medical monitoring seems to have fallen behind. In the near future, we hope that the scientific community and in particular the medical disciplines will be able to closely support the world of eSports to guarantee the correct assistance to all professional and non-professional athletes. An increase in the number of scientific work and specific studies will certainly bring benefits in countering physical attrition, reducing the risk of injury, in psychological support to athletes and in the fight against doping reality.
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Poker is a game of skill and chance involving economic decision-making under uncertainty. It is also a complex but well-defined real-world environment with a clear rule-structure. As such, poker has strong potential as a model system for studying high-stakes, high-risk expert performance. Poker has been increasingly used as a tool to study decision-making and learning, as well as emotion self-regulation. In this review, we discuss how these studies have begun to inform us about the interaction between emotions and technical skill, and how expertise develops and depends on these two factors. Expertise in poker critically requires both mastery of the technical aspects of the game, and proficiency in emotion regulation; poker thus offers a good environment for studying these skills in controlled experimental settings of high external validity. We conclude by suggesting ideas for future research on expertise, with new insights provided by poker.
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The concept of passion is relevant to understanding gambling behaviours and gambling problems. Longitudinal studies are useful to better understand the absence and development of gambling problems; however, only one study has specifically considered poker players. Using a longitudinal design, this study aims to determine the influence, 1 year later, of two forms of passion-harmonious and obsessive-on gambling problems in poker players. A total of 116 poker players was recruited from across Quebec, Canada. The outcome variable of interest was participants' category on the Canadian Pathological Gambling Index, and the predictive variable was the Gambling Passion Scale. Multiple logistic regression analyses were conducted to identify independent risk factors of at-risk poker players 1 year later. Obsessive passion at baseline doubled the risk of gambling problems 1 year later (p < 0.01); for harmonious passion, there was no association. Number of gambling activities, drug problems, and impulsivity were also associated with at-risk gambling. This study highlights the links between obsessive passion and at-risk behaviours among poker players. It is therefore important to prevent the development of obsessive passion among poker players.
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Professional gamblers are more likely than amateur gamblers to meet criteria for problem gambling but minimal research has examined their gambling behavior and its consequences. This study compared gambling behavior, problem gambling symptoms, related harms, recognition, and help-seeking among problem semi/professional gamblers (PPGs/PSPGs) and problem amateur gamblers (PAGs). Surveys completed by 57 self-identified professional gamblers, 311 semi-professional gamblers and 4226 amateur gamblers were analysed. PPGs/PSPGs were significantly more likely than PAGs to be male, younger, never married, speak a language other than English at home, and have higher psychological distress, compared to PAGs. PPGs/PSPGs were more likely to gamble more frequently on many skills-based forms, but most also participated in several chance-based forms. PPGs'/PSPGs' most common problematic gambling form was electronic gaming machines and they were more likely to have problems with sports betting than PAGs. Most PPGs/PSPGs reported coming out behind on all gambling forms over the previous year. PPGs/PSPGs were more likely than PAGs to report chasing losses and numerous detrimental financial gambling consequences. This group's self-identification as PPGs/PSPGs is clearly inaccurate and perhaps a means to avoid stigma, elevate status and support problem denial. PPGs/PSPGs may represent an extreme example of gamblers with erroneous cognitions and beliefs who lack the required discipline and skill to be successful professional gamblers. The findings identify a group of problem gamblers who may benefit from interventions to dispel their mistaken self-identity, and emphasize the need for more rigorous confirmation of professional gambler status in future research.
Chapter
Holts and Surugiu describe an emerging form of work among online gamblers and show how it is challenging conventional categories of employment and self-employment. The authors draw on in-depth interviews with professional online poker players in Romania who are involved in staking?an arrangement whereby a player is provided with money in exchange for a share of the winnings. In order to investigate how staking fits into existing typologies of employment, the authors examine how the work of staked players is organised, the extent to which the players are able to exercise autonomy and control in carrying out their work, contractual relationships, and how staked players are recruited and rewarded.
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Buscando contribuir para a compreensão das características comportamentais e as fontes de informação utilizadas pelos turistas de eventos, este artigo investigou a correlação entre estes construtos. Os sujeitos da pesquisa foram 1.024 participantes do Latin American Poker Tour 2013, em Viña del Mar (Chile). O método utilizado foi quantitativo, por meio de um survey com uma amostra de 60 participantes que preencheram questionários autoaplicáveis durante os três dias do evento. Este procedimento foi necessário para apurar as fontes de informação utilizadas e descrever as características comportamentais dos jogadores de poker online. Correlacionando as fontes de informações utilizadas com as características comportamentais, o presente estudo demonstrou a predominância da busca de informação externa por meio de fontes especializadas e pessoais. Os resultados, também permitiram elaborar um modelo para a relação entre os dois construtos estudados utilizando a modelagem de equação estrutural.
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Collusion is the practice of two or more parties deliberately cooperating to the detriment of others. While such behavior may be desirable in certain circumstances, in many it is considered dishonest and unfair. If agents otherwise hold strictly to the established rules, though, collusion can be challenging to police. In this paper, we introduce an automatic method for collusion detection in sequential games. We achieve this through a novel object, called a collusion table, that captures the effects of collusive behavior, i.e., advantage to the colluding parties, without assuming any particular pattern of behavior. We show the effectiveness of this method in the domain of poker, a popular game where collusion is prohibited. Copyright © 2013, Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (www.aaai.org). All rights reserved.
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Etude 1 : La revue de littérature a identifié 16 articles. Plusieurs facteurs prédicteurs du jeu excessif ont été identifiés (le stress, les attributions internes, la dissociation, l’ennui, les émotions négatives, les croyances irrationnelles, l’anxiété et l’impulsivité). Enfin, la validité des outils utilisés pour mesurer le jeu excessif et les croyances irrationnelles dans cette population est remise en question. Etude 2 : Le Tilt serait lié à une perte de contrôle et des émotions négatives (colère, frustration), associées à des expériences dissociatives transitoires. Causé par des évènements tant internes qu’externes, le Tilt affecterait les processus comportementaux, émotionnels et cognitifs.Etude 3 : L’échelle OPTS mesure la fréquence des épisodes de Tilt au poker en ligne. Les items ont été créés à partir de la littérature et de 10 entretiens semi-directifs de joueurs de poker en ligne. L’échelle est composée de 2 facteurs appelés « Tilt émotionnel et comportemental » et « Tilt cognitif ». Etude 4 : Nos résultats indiquent que la fréquence des épisodes de Tilt est un prédicteur significatif de l’utilisation excessive du poker en ligne. La fréquence des épisodes de Tilt est quant à elle prédite par les croyances irrationnelles de type « incapacité à s’abstenir de jouer » et « interprétations favorables à la poursuite du jeu ». Le Tilt et les croyances irrationnelles sont donc fortement associés au jeu excessif au poker en ligne.
Chapter
Internet gambling lacks the gate-keeping systems of land-based gambling venues that protect vulnerable individuals. Internet gambling poses particular risks to two specific vulnerable populations; youth and problem gamblers. Adolescents and young adults are familiar with Internet technology and appear to be gambling online at higher rates than the general adult population. This is particularly concerning as gambling at an early age is associated with gambling problems and engagement with gambling at a young age may lead to increased involvement during adulthood. Internet gambling has been associated with problem gambling as higher rates of problem gamblers have been found in samples of Internet gamblers. It is likely that problem gamblers use this mode of gambling when other forms are not available and therefore, Internet gambling acts to maintain and exacerbate existing problems. However, Internet gambling is also likely to create problems for individuals who would not gamble on other means and cause substantial difficulties. This chapter outlines the specific risks posed by online gambling to adolescents and young adults and the use of online gambling amongst these populations. The impact of advertising and marketing on youth is also explored, including measures that should be enacted to protect this group. The impact of Internet gambling on problem gambling is also explored. Research findings are critically analyzed as well as factors that appear to be associated with Internet gambling problems.
Chapter
Internet gambling is more than simply a technological medium through which to access traditional gambling products. It represents an entirely new mode and form of gambling that has changed the nature of gambling products and the way in which players use these. Online gambling has specific features that make it appealing and pose potential risks to players. In particular, it is highly accessible, convenient and affordable, offers a comfortable way for individuals to gamble anonymously in private on an immersive interface using electronic forms of money. Although many Internet gamblers appear to also engage in land-based gambling, Internet gamblers appear to be different from traditional gamblers and use online gambling for different reasons and in different ways. This chapter explores the differences between Internet and non-Internet gambling and gamblers. Research findings are presented to outline the demographic characteristics and breakdown of online gamblers and other related behaviours such as substance use. Details are provided of how online gamblers use the Internet for other purposes as well as their participation and behavioural patterns relating to online gambling. Motivations for online gambling and perceived advantages and disadvantages of this mode of access are discussed.
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The medical model of pathological gambling is coming to dominate the public image of the problem gambler. The new image is replacing the previous one of sinner or criminal. This article traces the roots, causes, and phases of pathological gambling. The sociocultural roots of pathological gambling are seen as distinct from gambling itself. The work of sociologists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and others is summarized herein, and different types of pathological gamblers are examined. Three phases of the career of the pathological gambler are outlined: the adventurous, or winning phase; the losing phase; and the desperation phase. The gambler's career progresses with increasing problems in all spheres of life, including relations with family members and friends, gambling associates, employment, and finances. Eventually the gambler has reduced life options, which include suicide, imprisonment, running away, and seeking help. Two major sources of help, Gamblers Anonymous and professional counseling, are examined, and their prospects and difficulties are revealed. Projections are made for future developments in the area of pathological gambling.
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The medical model of pathological gambling is coming to dominate the public image of the problem gambler. The new image is replacing the previous one of sinner or criminal. This article traces the roots, causes, and phases of pathological gambling. The sociocultural roots of pathological gambling are seen as distinct from gambling itself. The work of sociologists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and others is summar ized herein, and different types of pathological gamblers are examined. Three phases of the career of the pathological gambler are outlined: the adventurous, or winning phase; the losing phase; and the desperation phase. The gambler's career progresses with increasing problems in all spheres of life, including relations with family members and friends, gam bling associates, employment, and finances. Eventually the gambler has reduced life options, which include suicide, imprisonment, running away, and seeking help. Two major sources of help, Gamblers Anonymous and professional counseling, are examined, and their prospects and difficulties are revealed. Projections are made for future developments in the area of pathological gambling.
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THE GAME OF POKER has been of interest to researchers in economics1 and artificial intelligence. 2 Its attributes have been compared to striking a bargain in the market and to the clash of war.3 Throughout the study of poker, the question whether performance is due to skill or just to luck has been a topic of much debate.4 In 1986, a professional poker player took on the IRS and won a ruling based on his argument that poker is a skill.5 This past January, a jury in the United Kingdom decided that poker is a game of luck, not skill.6 While it is clear that there has been much speculation about this question, the authors are unaware of any study that has addressed this issue. The aim of our study was to determine conclusively if poker is a game of skill. To do this, some participants were taught strategies based on expert opinion while others were taught no strategies.
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Differences in players' skill are important determinants of relative player success in most real games such as poker, chess, basketball, business, and politics. Yet conventional game theory has concentrated primarily on games with no skill differences among players. This paper uses a simplified version of stud poker to better understand the concept of differential player skill in games. Players with very different strategies for playing this game are modeled algorithmically and pitted against one another in simulation tournaments.
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Online poker is one of the fastest growing forms of online gambling yet there has been relatively little research to date. This study comprised 422 online poker players (362 males and 60 females) and investigated some of the predicting factors of online poker success and problem gambling using an online questionnaire. Results showed that length of time as a player was positively correlated with the number of days playing per year, length of poker sessions, and financial success. However, length of time playing did not correlate with either score on DSM-IV problem gambling criteria or perceived skill. Using a stepwise multiple regression, predictors of winning play and financial success among the online players were examined. Those players who were more likely to have financial success were: (1) disciplined and avoided spending over their monthly gambling budget; (2) played at higher stake levels; (3) did not over-estimate the skill involved in poker; and (4) perceived themselves to be more skilful. A further multiple regression examined predictors of problem gambling. Results showed that problem online poker players were (1) more likely to swap genders when playing online; (2) undisciplined and spent over their allocated budget; and (3) played more frequently for longer periods of time. Even though there is some skill involved in poker, skill was not a predictor in problem gambling. These results are discussed along with implications from the findings for key stakeholders (i.e., the players, gaming industry, policy makers and researchers).
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The material presented in this report is not intended as an explanation of compulsive gambling. I do not pretend to be refuting the psychoanalytic or the personality theorists. Rather, I describe the changes that take place in the career of the person turned compulsive gambler. Some of what is described here adds to the already existing knowledge of the compulsion.
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This study examines whether people optimally respond to prize incentives for risk taking in tournaments. I exploit the television game show World Poker Tour as a natural experiment. The results show that professional players strategically choose the degree of risk taking depending on the incentives implied by the prize structure they face. I find that they are more sensitive to losses than to gains.
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A Critical Introduction to Social Research is the new, updated and improved edition of A Short Introduction to Social Research. This book introduces students and researchers to the key ideas and issues that inform research practice. In it, Henn, Weinstein and Foard provide a clear and easy-to-understand route-map to help the reader plan their research project from beginning to end. A Critical Introduction is perfect for use on introductory methods courses and is also an invaluable guide for the first time researcher embarking on their own small-scale research project. This new second edition now features updated chapters which reflect recent debates and developments in the field, including: - New coverage of emancipatory and feminist approaches; - Comparative research methods, evaluation research, and action research; - Online research; - Glossary of key terms; - Revised further reading sections at the end of each chapter which include peer-reviewed research articles. This book aims to prepare students and new researchers for their research project. Brilliantly written throughout, this is your essential guide to the theory of research, the practice of research and the best ways to plan and manage your research.
Article
Technological innovation has always played a role in the development of gambling behaviour, primarily through providing new market opportunities. Early prevalence studies of Internet gambling in the UK, Canada and the US have shown that Internet gambling is not a cause for concern at present However, this seems likely to change as more people start to use the Internet for leisure activities. After a brief overview of gambling technologies and deregulation issues, this paper examines the impact of technology on gambling by highlighting salient factors in the rise of Internet gambling (i.e., accessibility, affordability, anonymity, convenience, escape immersion/dissociation, disinhibition, event frequency, asociability, interactivity, and simulation). The paper also overviews some of the main social impacts surrounding Internet gambling, such as protection of the vulnerable, Internet gambling in the workplace, electronic cash, and unscrupulous operators. Recommendations for Internet gambling operators are also provided.
Article
Poker is a game of imperfect information where players make inferences and investments under uncertainty. Winning requires skill as well as luck, and people play with different styles. Here I examine the roles of style and skill in a simplified poker game. I propose that style arises from mental limits in estimating odds and stakes, and I define style as a strategy for making decisions in light of these mental limits. I then develop formal models of cognitive styles, such as "Tight" and "Loose", and pit them against each other in heads-up (pair-wise) face-offs (match-ups). I also develop a formal model of normative skill and pit this skill against the styles. My results show that the best style for one player depends on the style of his opponent, and that Novice styles can be remarkably effective against Expert skill. I discuss the reasons behind these results and suggest how this study may apply to practical problems in business and warfare - which are real life games of inference and investment that are also played with style and skill.
Article
In its lengthy history, gambling has attracted amateur gamesmen, cheaters, charlatans, and professional gamblers. But only within the last fifty years has the entire social organization of gambling changed radically, due to the growing availability of legal casinos and card rooms. One result has been the creation of an entirely new breed of professional gambler, with four distinct subtypes: the worker-professional, the outside-supported professional, the subsistence professional, and the career professional. The majority of these gamblers eventually succumb to the interminable pressures of full-time gambling and encounter some degree of devastating social and financial failure. Only a minority find relatively lasting fame and fortune. The legitimation of recreational gambling is currently in an era of florescence, aided by the promotion of casino gambling as a kind of leisurely activity, the attention of the national media and gambling publications, and the organization of high-stakes, international tournament play. All of these conditions have helped professional gamblers pursue their specialized art with much more publicity, safety, and potentially greater rewards than ever before.
Article
Henry Lesieur's book, The Chase: Career of the Compulsive Gambler (1984), focuses on the financial aspects of pathological gamblers' increasingly desperate need to win or get even. This essay suggests that the concept of "chasing" can be extended to explore how gamblers chase in their attempt to meet emotional and spiritual needs. Clinical case examples are presented and implications for treatment are discussed.
Article
Poker, a zero-sum game of incomplete information, has recently experienced a surge of popularity among both amateur and professional players. Several players who have done well in multiple tournaments have achieved celebrity status as poker "superstars." However, because of poker's outward simplicity, it has been questioned whether the success achieved by these superstars is due to skill or luck. This analysis uses data from high-stakes poker tournaments to test for skill discrepancies among elite players. We find significant evidence suggesting that certain players are able to consistently outperform their experienced counterparts.
Article
This chapter explores the proliferation of poker (both live and online) and discusses how campuses have responded to this activity. The chapter concludes with some implications for practice and further research.
Article
An aspect of casino games that in general leads to discussions among both participants and spectators, is the relative extent to which a player can positively influence his results by making appropriate strategic choices. This question is closely related to the issue of how to distinguish between games of skill and games of chance. This is an issue that is interesting from a juridical point of view too, since in many countries the legitimacy of exploiting a specific game depends on the category to which it belongs. This paper summarizes recent developments concerning the measurement of skill in games. It points out the elements in the definitions that need closer attention, it illustrates the analysis with examples and it discusses further possibilities.
Article
The phenomenon of `chasing' has been identified as one of the central characteristics of the behavior of pathological gamblers [American Psychiatric Association (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed., DSM IV). Washington, DC: APA]. It consists of more frequent involvement, increased persistence and elevated monetary risk in an effort to recoup money that has been lost. The present research makes a distinction between within- and between-session chasing, and attempts to examine the determinants of within-session chasing in a reasonably valid laboratory analogue. Male college students who gambled (N=248) were given US$10 and an opportunity to gamble. They could: (1) decline to gamble and keep their US$10 (nonplayers); (2) gamble and win even more money by quitting at a more optimal time (nonchasers); or (3) gamble longer than they should, resulting in the loss of all available money (chasers). Zuckerman's impulsivity factor (from the ZKPQ) discriminated chasers from nonchasers. Breen and Zuckerman's Gambling Beliefs and Attitudes Survey (GABS) discriminated players from nonplayers. A sensation-seeking explanation of within-session chasing was not supported. The results are discussed in terms of the impact of impulsivity on within-session chasing. It is suggested that the GABS may serve as a general measure of `affinity' to gambling, and could be useful in examining the process of between-session chasing, that is, returning on another day to `get even'.
Article
To date there has been very little empirical research into Internet gambling and none relating to the recent rise in popularity of online poker. Given that recent reports have claimed that students may be a vulnerable group, the aim of the current study was to establish basic information regarding Internet poker playing behavior among the student population, including various motivators for participation and predictors of problematic play. The study examined a self-selected sample of student online poker players using an online survey (n=422). Results showed that online poker playing was undertaken at least twice per week by a third of the participants. Almost one in five of the sample (18%) was defined as a problem gambler using the DSM-IV criteria. Findings demonstrated that problem gambling in this population was best predicted by negative mood states after playing, gender swapping whilst playing, and playing to escape from problems.
Article
Strategy and skill in games are two closely related concepts. A strategy describes how to play the game. The relative skill level of a game indicates to what extent the strategic choices of the players influence the game result and to what extent this result is determined by random factors. Relative skill is important when the exploitation of games is concerned. Gaming acts, in The Netherlands but also in other countries, distinguish between games of skill and games of chance. This thesis consists of two parts. Part I deals with relative skill and the role of random factors in games. Part II is devoted to the computation of optimal strategies in two interesting classes of games: poker and take-and-guess games.
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