Interactive messages on video lottery terminals and persistence in gambling

Abstract

This study aims to evaluate whether messages presented on a video lottery terminal screen during a gambling session modify players' behaviour. The content of the messages reminded players about the notion of chance and illusion of control in gambling. The hypothesis predicts that the messages will provide players the opportunity to withdraw more rapidly from the game than other players who do not receive these messages. Participants were randomly assigned to three groups (n = 10): a) Messages, b) Breaks, and c) No interruption. The results confirm not only that the presentation of messages influences players' behaviour by inciting them to play fewer games, but also that the presentation of breaks generates the same effect. The links between the effects of breaks on gamblers' behaviour and cognitive theory are discussed while focusing on the control of gambling habits within the context of responsible gambling.

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