BUSINESS

Can Technology Advances Help Gambling Industry Over Public Health Hurdles?

TAGs: gambling machines, gaming technology

online-gamblingtechnologyInstead of more money more problems, opponents of the gambling industry would argue, more machines more problems, as in problem gamblers. Read more.

Despite some opposition from a variety of angles, the online gambling industry continues to experience growth in many areas of the world. At first, arguably the biggest hurdle the gambling industry faced was the legal parameters. But as governments begin to pass legislation to regulate online gambling and raise revenue, now health officials are concerned that the growing industry could increase problem gamblers.

The problem would lie in areas where there is a growing amount of electronic machines available for people to gamble with, thus increasing access. While this is good for the industry many people feel it contributes to rising numbers of problem gamblers. Access is quickly becoming ubiquitous when you take into account the mobile technology now available, the places where people can gamble either on land, or online are expanding.

Realistically, it wouldn’t appear that this trend is likely to stop anytime soon, but couldn’t advances in technology also help gamblers? I mean one alternative is the government could try a variety of unorthodox methods, shock therapy, torture, you know the usual. But that won’t quite solve the issue, though it would be interesting to watch. There is a solution that uses the exact same technology to amend some of its own alleged effects.

Particularly in places where gambling is controlled or regulated by the government, the technology that allows for easy access to gambling outlets could also be used to help at risk or problem gamblers. As part of regulation, governments could use the technology to track the gambling habits of players. Additionally, the technology could be used to identify problem gamblers early, before the issue gets out of control. They could take it one step further and even offer these players ways to receive treatment and provide them with information and instruction on responsible gambling techniques. The advance of gambling technology doesn’t have to spell doom to the public health. Considering that some of the revenue is going towards health programs in many regulated areas, then the implementation of sophisticated tracking technology to identify at risk gamblers and demographics would certainly be a step in the right direction and would likely appease many nay-sayers to gambling industry expansion…

Well, there might always be nay-sayers, but baby steps.

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