How Orbit Exchange is Changing the Landscape of Sports Betting

Sports Betting’s Changing Environment: Is it dangerous for youngsters?


Attending sporting events and watching sports are typically regarded as popular, enjoyable, and highly valued activities in contemporary society. Digital technologies, such as smartphones, tablets, and computers, have advanced over the past several years, making it possible to bet on practically any sporting event at any time, such as before or during a game in progress. Additionally, there is an unparalleled amount of exposure to sports betting commercials. Sports betting and gambling are becoming more and more common, especially among teenagers and young people, thanks to the constant availability and accessibility of cues. As a result, there is rising concern that this group may experience unprecedented levels of gambling-related disorders. Here, we want to explain how the growing acceptance of sports betting is altering how young sports fans and student-athletes view the game. After outlining current rates of youth involvement in sports betting and associated issues, we will examine the research that supports the growing acceptance and popularity of sports gambling as well as its effects on young athletes’ cognitive and affective development. The final portion focuses on regulatory tactics for dealing with contemporary worries about the effects of sports betting on kids and teenagers.

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Which team will prevail in the match? How much will the winning margin be? Who will score first?

Sports enthusiasts will undoubtedly have an answer, even though they may respond to such inquiries with varying degrees of certainty. Numerous, accessible, and accompanied by a wide range of betting opportunities are sports events. This kind of gaming is prohibited for kids, although it is widely promoted on television and on social media. Therefore, it is reasonable to wonder whether the growing popularity and accessibility of sports betting could endanger young children and teenagers. The following chapter offers a thorough synthesis of the available evidence and discusses the potential impact and repercussions of sports betting on young people, presuming that the current state of sports betting constitutes an emerging public health issue.

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1)Negative Effects of Gambling on Young People

Recent cross-sectional research has shown that sports betting is becoming more common among young people. For instance, in a recent study conducted on a convenience sample of 735 young adults (aged 18–25) in Spain, 43% (comprising 80% of men) reported having a bet on a sporting event at least once (Labrador and Vallejo-Achón 2019). The sample was recruited in person at various university faculties and vocational training centers in Madrid, n = 603, and online through social network sites, n = 132. The majority of wagers were placed online, targeted football (soccer), and represented obvious outcomes, according to one study (e.g., betting on the winning team). In a study that included a convenience sample of 1330 male high school students from Croatia, underage teenagers (under the age of 18) admitted to betting on sports despite not being of legal gambling age in the majority of cases. The fact that 24% of male high school pupils had already experienced serious psychosocial repercussions from gambling is particularly alarming. Particularly in sports betting, video lottery machines, and online betting, these patterns were observed.

Adolescents have also reported an increase in harm from gambling (see also BOX 1 for a brief account of hazardous gambling practices in adolescents). For instance, a survey of 988 first-year junior high school students in Finland aged 12- to 15 indicated that 3% had a likely gambling disease and a further 4.9% may be classified as at-risk gamblers (Castrén et al. 2015). In addition to Australia (Miller 2017; Purdie et al. 2011), Canada (Elton-Marshall et al. 2016), Croatia (Ricijas et al. 2011, 2016), New Zealand (Volberg et al. 2010), Sweden (Fröberg et al. 2015), the United Kingdom (Gambling Commission UK 2016, 2017), and the United States, hazardous gambling involvement of adolescents have also been observed.

Recent studies on sports betting have revealed that individuals who are young, male, unmarried, educated, employed full-time workers or students, and have less experience with sports betting have patterns of live betting that are quite widespread. Other research (Hing et al. 2017a; Humphreys and Pérez 2012; Russel et al. 2018; Wood and Williams 2009) have demonstrated that male teenagers and young adults who engage in problematic sports betting are most likely to be these individuals.

It’s significant to note that recent population-based sampling data have also demonstrated a rise in online sports betting activities. For instance, in France, where 11% of the population reported having wagered on sports in 2019, sports betting constitutes the gambling activity that has grown the fastest in volume. This study also reveals that, with a 2.8 increase in wagers over the previous five years, sports betting is the second most popular form of gambling, behind playing the lottery.

According to Costes et al. (2020), sports betting is associated with the form of gambling that is most frequently practiced (26.9% of weekly sports bettors, 37.1% of weekly sports bettors for horse racing bets, and 26.9% for other sorts of sports). In addition, Costes and colleagues (2020) found that sports bettors are more likely to be men (89.7%), younger (72.2% 35 years), have greater levels of education, and earn more money than other forms of gamblers. This finding is consistent with the convenience sample research described above.

Importantly, a quarter of people who develop gambling disorder are explicitly active in sports betting, making it the sort of gambling that is most closely linked to gambling-related difficulties (3 times more moderate problem gamblers and 6 times more high problem gamblers than lottery players).

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2) Integration of gambling, gaming, and sports

Does playing online games affect and impact how young people feel about (sports) gambling? Research on Daily Fantasy Sports is currently examining this question (DFS). In DFS, participants can assemble their teams of actual players, take on the role of team manager or owner, and compete for cash rewards funded by entrance fees. Gaining the most points across games that can last a full sports season is the main goal of DFS leagues. DFS is well-known internationally (especially in North America; e.g., Marchica et al. 2017). Participation in fantasy games depends heavily on skill-based processes and sports knowledge.

Adolescents are permitted to engage in these gambling-related activities lawfully because these games are regarded as skill-based games.

Concerns have been raised about the accelerated fees and other DFS elements that could encourage young individuals to play excessively and suffer injury as a result. Because daily or hourly DFS offers availability and short-term chances, it is similar to online sports betting. Accordingly, there is evidence that playing in fantasy sports leagues is linked to sports betting issues in adults, college students, and adolescents. These issues include loss of control over gambling, lying about one’s gambling, and being preoccupied with one’s gambling.

Other games outside DFS could provide a gateway to gambling. Social media platforms like Facebook, for instance, provide free casino games like slots and card games (blackjack). Due to the lack of monetary rewards, these games are not categorized as gambling activities (although monetary expense can result from playing or subscribing). As a result, many games, like DFS, can be lawfully given to teens and are hugely popular with this demographic (Derevensky and Gainsbury 2016; Gainsbury et al. 2015, 2017; Kim et al. 2017; Teichert et al. 2017; Wohl et al. 2017).

Importantly, long-term research has demonstrated that using social networking sites for simulated gambling eases teenagers’ move to real-money gambling (Dussault et al. 2017; Hayer et al. 2018). These findings are concerning because they imply that online gambling simulations can make gambling seem like a risk-free, pleasant, and socially acceptable behavior.

3)  Increased Exposure and Accessibility to Sports Betting

The majority of European nations allow legal and heavily promoted sports betting. As a result, while watching sports match-day programming, sports fans are either directly exposed to gambling messages (via television adverts or smartphone notifications) or inadvertently exposed to such communications (e.g., team shirts sponsored by gambling companies, pitch side advertising boards, half time entertainment; Sharman et al. 2019). For instance, a thorough examination of three complete episodes of Match of the Day, a prominent soccer-related program that airs on the non-commercial British television channel BBC1, highlights an average of more than 250 gambling logo exposures per episode.

According to research done in Australia, fans watch between 10 and 15 minutes of gambling advertisements throughout every game (Lindsay et al. 2013, on average 107 advertisements for gambling each game) (Gordon and Chapman 2014). Four teams in the English Premier League had gambling shirt sponsors in 2008; by 2017, half of the teams had such sponsors (Lopez-Gonzalez and Griffiths 2018). Live commentary and the studio break during halftime can encourage the exposure of gambling-related cues through discussions about betting odds (e.g., between match-day programs hosts, featuring celebrities and football experts; Deans et al 2017; Hing et al. 2015). Thus, sports betting is getting more and more ingrained in sports culture and is promoted in prominent prime-time TV shows.

4)  The Effects of Sports Gambling Advertisements on Children and Adolescents

The fact that many kids and teenagers are currently exposed to sports betting cues while watching family TV is a significant public health problem. For instance, 17% of all advertising seen during the 2018 FIFA World Cup on TV was focused on gambling (Duncan et al. 2018; Newall et al. 2019). Additionally, despite advertising regulations (for example, in Australia, live sports advertising is prohibited until 8:30 p.m.), young people report seeing adverts for gambling on social media or on YouTube (e.g., before being able to watch the sport or gaming video they aim to watch; Thomas et al. 2018; see also Houghton et al. 2020; Killick and Griffiths 2019).

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Betting Exchange’s Changing Landscape of Sports Betting FAQs

1) What Makes Adolescents More Prone to Problematic Gambling Habits?

In terms of experimentation and involvement in dangerous behaviors, adolescence is a unique developmental stage. Teenagers’ poor decision-making and dangerous actions are typically thought to be neurobiologically correlated with an undeveloped prefrontal cortex at the neurological level.

2) Since when is gambling on sports permitted in Luxembourg?

Since 1987.

3) What is the legal betting age in Luxembourg?

The legal betting age is 18, and winnings are not subject to taxes.

4) Are Athletes More Likely Than Non-Athletes to Develop Problem Gambling?

Elite athletes’ competitive nature and enthusiasm in sports are frequently cited as the reasons they bet. More specifically, gambling fits in nicely with athletes’ need for challenge and competitiveness, as well as occasionally their heightened demand for sensation and risk-taking.



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