Should voluntary self-exclusion by gamblers be used as a proxy measure for problem gambling?

Abstract

This brief paper critically addresses a recent approach by researchers that use voluntary self-exclusion (VSE) by gamblers as a proxy measure for problem gambling. By using tracking data from online gamblers or data from player cards, such research derives typical behavioral patterns of past voluntary self-excluders and uses their data to predict and identify problem gamblers. We argue that this approach is flawed and is unlikely to help in developing harm-minimization measures. We argue that using personalized feedback is a much better approach to the prevention of problem gambling than using data from those that self-exclude from gambling.

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