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Bingo playing in the UK: The influence of demographic factors on play

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Abstract

Despite the popularity of bingo, it is a little studied gambling behaviour. This study was conducted in order to obtain general information regarding the gambling behaviour of current UK bingo players. A total of 412 bingo players completed questionnaires about their gambling behaviour. The majority of participants (57%) played once or twice a week with a small percentage (3%) playing five or more times a week. A large percentage of participants also played the National Lottery (82%) and bought National Lottery scratchcards (40%), but very few ever gambled in a casino (6%). An analysis by age revealed that older bingo players were significantly more likely to play more often. However, younger players are more likely to spend more per bingo session. This paper adds significantly to a sparse literature. The data collected add to our understanding of the bingo phenomenon in the UK.

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... In our search, we found 17 studies that fit the above two criteria. Six studies were conducted in the UK (Dixey & Talbot, 1982; Dixey, 1987, 1996; Downes, Davies, David, & Stone, 1976; Griffiths & Bingham, 2002, 2005), one in New Zealand (Clarke & Rossen, 2000), six in the United States (Burger, 1991; Chapple & Nofziger, 2000, King, 1985a, 1985b, 1987, 1990; Reitz, 2004) and three in Canada (Maclure et al., 2006; O'Brien Cousins & Witcher, 2004, 2007). Because previous research with a focus on bingo has been almost exclusively limited to qualitative studies, other sources of data need to be tapped to examine quantitative data on bingo prevalence, player characteristics, and relationships between bingo play and problem gambling. ...
... Within the bingo player population in the UK and New Brunswick, prevalence of weekly participation was 35% and 55%, respectively (Wardle, Sproston, Orford, Erens, Griffiths, Constantine et al., 2007; New Brunswick Department of Health & Wellness, 2001). Similar results were reported in a study of 412 UK bingo players by Griffiths and Bingham (2002), who found that 57% of respondents played once or twice per week, 17% played three times per week, and 3% played five or more times per week. Finally, in Saskatchewan, the most prevalent ...
... Similarly, in Nevada, among adolescents, girls were found to be twice as likely as boys to gamble on bingo (Volberg, 2002). The predominance of female bingo players is consistent with previous studies on bingo (Dixey, 1996; Griffiths & Bingham 2002; Chapple & Nofziger, 2000, King, 1990; O'Brien Cousins & Witcher, 2004, 2006; Maclure, Smith, Wood, Leblanc, & Cuffaro, 2006). ...
Article
Bingo has a long history as a popular gambling game. Previous research on bingo has been almost exclusively limited to qualitative research. Consequently, little is known about the prevalence of bingo playing, the potential risks associated with regular bingo playing, and its possible influence on the development of problem gambling. The present paper provides a review of the literature on bingo in Western countries using published articles focused on bingo and reports of broad-based gambling surveys containing data on bingo participation. Available data show relatively high rates of past-year bingo participation among adolescents. Within the adult population, females and individuals in poor health reported the highest bingo participation rates. Three general groups of bingo players were identified: low-income individuals, seniors, and young adults. It is argued that although bingo is generally viewed by the public as a “soft” form of gambling, it has the potential to lead to significant problems.
... In our search, we found 17 studies that fit the above two criteria. Six studies were conducted in the UK (Dixey & Talbot, 1982;Dixey, 1987Dixey, , 1996Downes, Davies, David, & Stone, 1976;Griffiths & Bingham, 2002, 2005, one in New Zealand (Clarke & Rossen, 2000), six in the United States (Burger, 1991;Chapple & Nofziger, 2000, King, 1985a, 1985b, 1990Reitz, 2004) and three in Canada (Maclure et al., 2006;O'Brien Cousins & Witcher, 2004. Because previous research with a focus on bingo has been almost exclusively limited to qualitative studies, other sources of data need to be tapped to examine quantitative data on bingo prevalence, player characteristics, and relationships between bingo play and problem gambling. ...
... Within the bingo player population in the UK and New Brunswick, prevalence of weekly participation was 35% and 55%, respectively (Wardle, Sproston, Orford, Erens, Griffiths, Constantine et al., 2007;New Brunswick Department of Health & Wellness, 2001). Similar results were reported in a study of 412 UK bingo players by Griffiths and Bingham (2002), who found that 57% of respondents played once or twice per week, 17% played three times per week, and 3% played five or more times per week. Finally, in Saskatchewan, the most prevalent weekly gambling activities were lottery ticket purchases (34.2%), playing bingo (23.9%), and playing Sport Select (23.5%) (Wynne, 2002). ...
... Similarly, in Nevada, among adolescents, girls were found to be twice as likely as boys to gamble on bingo (Volberg, 2002). The predominance of female bingo players is consistent with previous studies on bingo (Dixey, 1996;Griffiths & Bingham 2002;Chapple & Nofziger, 2000, King, 1990O'Brien Cousins & Witcher, 2004, 2006Maclure, Smith, Wood, Leblanc, & Cuffaro, 2006). In a national survey carried out amongst 7,166 bingo players in clubs throughout the UK, Dixey (1996) reported that the clientele of commercial bingo was overwhelmingly female (85%). ...
Article
Full-text available
Bingo has a long history as a popular gambling game. Previous research on bingo has been almost exclusively limited to qualitative research. Consequently, little is known about the prevalence of bingo playing, the potential risks associated with regular bingo playing, and its possible influence on the development of problem gambling. The present paper provides a review of the literature on bingo in Western countries using published articles focused on bingo and reports of broad-based gambling surveys containing data on bingo participation. Available data show relatively high rates of past-year bingo participation among adolescents. Within the adult population, females and individuals in poor health reported the highest bingo participation rates. Three general groups of bingo players were identified: low-income individuals, seniors, and young adults. It is argued that although bingo is generally viewed by the public as a “soft” form of gambling, it has the potential to lead to significant problems.
... This is pertinent in light of two areas of new evidence. First, that many gamblers, including bingo players, combine forms of gambling [18][19][20][21]. Second, that the likelihood or seriousness of harm may be influenced not only by the particular form of gambling undertaken, but also by the number of forms of gambling, and time and money spent by gamblers [22]. ...
Article
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Background Bingo is often understood as a low-harm form of gambling. This view has been challenged by a growing body of literature identifying gambling harm to bingo players in a range of countries. In this study, we aimed to identify which conditions enabled, facilitated, intensified or mitigated gambling harm for bingo players in three populations in Victoria in the context of corporate, technological and regulatory changes. Methods Our qualitative study investigated experiences of bingo-related gambling harm in three populations in Victoria, Australia where bingo was popular and structural disadvantage common: Indigenous people in the east, Pacific people in the state’s north and older people on low or fixed incomes in the capital. Data was generated through interviews with 53 bingo players and 13 stakeholders as well as 12 participant observations of bingo sessions. Results We found that while bingo is overwhelmingly positive for many players, a minority of bingo players and their families experience notable harm. Harm was generated through traditional paper-based bingo games, new technologies such as tablet-based bingo and by the widespread tactic of placing bingo sessions in close proximity to harmful electronic gambling machines. Overall, the risk of harm to bingo players appears to be escalating due to commercial, technological and regulatory changes. Conclusions These changes can be better managed by regulators: reforms are needed to safeguard bingo’s distinct character as a lower-risk form of gambling at a time when it, and its players, are under threat. Significantly, we found that harm to bingo players is intensified by factors external to gambling such as racialised poverty and adverse life events. Strategies that recognise these factors and grapple with gambling harm to bingo players are needed.
... They concluded that different strategies may be necessary to maximize treatment efficacy for men and for women with gambling problems. Several studies have reported playing bingo to be more frequent among female players than other types of games (e.g., Donati, Chiesi, & Primi, 2013;Griffiths & Bingham, 2002;Hing & Breen, 2001;Tavares et al., 2003). Braverman, LaPlante, Nelson, and Shaffer (2013) found that the number of game-types is relevant with respect to gambling-related risk. ...
Article
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... The UK is the world's largest single online bingo market, estimated at €312m of gross gaming revenue (GGR) in 2013 [1]. A particular feature of bingo in the UK is that it is the only form of gambling in which women engage more than men [2][3][4][5][6], and is consistently associated with lower socio-economic status and deprivation [2,6,7]. In the 2012 Scottish Health Survey, bingo was the most popular form of gambling among women after lottery participation and scratchcards, and was played by 10% of women [8]. ...
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