There has always been a debate on whether an online casino is better than playing inside an actual casino. The thing is that the answer will rely on the preferences of the players but when it comes to convenience, many will be quick to say that online casino gaming takes the trophy. After all, online casinos allow accessible gambling.
However, it’s undeniable that both ways of gambling have psychological effects that could either be good or bad. And so, aside from the questions like which is the better way to gamble, researchers are also trying to figure out how both ways are psychologically affecting the gamblers. Here are some of their findings.
The Confidence That People Have Towards Online And Land Casinos
Researchers found that an online betting site has more advantages compared to land casinos when it comes to convenience and allowing gamblers to have more privacy. There are even online gambling sites that do not require players to disclose any of their personal information.
Gambling anonymously is what many gamblers prefer as it not only protects them. It also allows them to gamble without worrying about getting judged. A professor of Behavioral Addiction at Nottingham Trent University, Dr. Mark Griffiths, spoke about this.
Dr. Griffith said, “In online live casino gaming, the anonymity of the internet allows players to privately engage in gambling without the fear of stigma.”
However, researchers also found that land casinos are also more trusted when it comes to fair gameplay. There is still a notion that online casinos are capable of rigging the games that they offer. There are also still people who are not comfortable making any transactions online.
However, online casinos are already starting to gain more trust from players worldwide. They make use of the latest technologies to ensure safe transactions between them and the players. The use of SSL certificates and secure payment options help customers feel more at ease. They also let people know that their games are randomly tested by third-part game testers for fairness too.
Which Is Possibly More Dangerous?
It’s understandable why part of their findings is how online casinos may be more dangerous for problematic gamblers. The accessibility of gambling activities will be hard for these people to get rid of their bad gambling habits.
Online casinos can be accessed during any time of the day without any limitations. It’s so easy to switch from one online casino to another too if they encounter any problems. Unlike back then, only people with problematic gambling behaviour who live near a casino establishment are at high risks. Today, anyone can be at high risk because accessing a gambling site is no longer time-consuming.
“Fundamentally, increased accessibility of gambling activities enables the individual to rationalize involvement in the risk-behaviour by removing previously restrictive barriers such as time constraints emanating from occupational and social commitments,” Dr. Griffiths said about this issue.
How Both Ways Affect the Mentality of Players?
Either way, both online and land casino gaming have effects on a person’s brain. Gambling, in general, changes how the brain releases a chemical called dopamine or the feel-good neurotransmitter. The more dopamine is released, the more tolerance the brain gets.
This means that the brain will keep on wanting to have more dopamine. With this, gamblers are likely to play longer to keep on experiencing feeling good when winning. Studies suggest that the release of dopamine reinforces maladaptive gambling which could then result in destructive behaviour.
There are also findings that both land and online casinos use technology to disguise losses as wins, especially for slot machine games. This affects how long players are gambling as there is a deception happening. They feel like they are winning when in reality the wins that they get do not defeat the losses that they had.
A published study explained this by giving an example. The example goes, “The game set up is as follows: players bet on 15 lines simultaneously, any of which they might win or lose. A player will accrue a net profit if the total amount collected from all winning lines is greater than the total amount wagered on all 15 lines.
“Such an outcome is accompanied by lights and sounds announcing the wins. However, lights and sounds will also be played if any of the lines win, even if the net amount collected is less than the total amount wagered on all 15 lines.
“If a player bets 5 credits per line (5 x 15 = 75) and wins 10 back from 3 (= 30), then the player has lost money, even though the lights and sounds indicate winning. The loss, the researchers claim, is thus disguised as a win.” There are already countries that have banned losses disguised as wins so that gamblers are very much aware of how much they have been winning compared to how much they have already lost.