Understanding Responsible Gaming
The concept of responsible gaming is broad. Part of it covers the regulations that gambling stakeholders need to adhere to. These regulations seek to promote a high-quality standard of operation, offering safe user experiences, and protecting people from addictive gambling and other potential gambling problems.
Operators of online gambling sites and suppliers of gambling software are generally required to adhere to responsible gaming principles. Typically, there are several types of areas that are regulated by responsible gaming principles and required on online casinos and gambling software providers.
Protecting Susceptible Gamblers
Some gamblers might be tempted to overspend their time and money on gambling sites. This can affect their normal life. To protect them, there are sites that implement some programs. One of these is self-exclusion which limits a player’s money and time spend on a gambling site.
This coupled with a reality check function that displays time spent on site at intervals helps gamblers regulate their gambling periods. Some systems also delay customer deposits for up to 24 hours. This essentially means that if a player is topping up to chase losses, they’ll have to wait 24 hours, and often by then, they will be thinking twice about it.
Preventing Underage Gambling
This is a collective effort between operators and guardians. Guardians should, ideally, monitor their children’s internet access and implement parental control functions. Operators, on the other hand, are required to have a clear way of ensuring that everyone registering on gambling sites has reached the legal gambling age.
Protection against Money Laundering and Data Breach
Online gambling sites are targets of hacks and money laundering activities given that people use personal data to gain access. As such, operators are required to implement security protocols that can identify money laundering activities and stop data breach attempts before they are successful.
Operators are also required to implement robust and strict protocols against access to user data. These policies should seek to protect the gambler’s identities and financial information from staff and data breaches.
Online Payment Protection
Virtually every gambler is required to deposit and withdraw funds over the internet. Responsible gambling calls for operators to implement and deploy robust software systems that are secure for these types of transactions to be carried out without exposing user information to vulnerabilities like identity theft and fraud.
Ethical Marketing and Advertising
In general, operators are required to strictly follow ethical marketing campaigns. In the case of gambling, operators are required to be factual in their advertising and avoid marketing to underage or vulnerable audiences. Secondly, before advertising to people directly, gambling service providers are required to seek express permission from the people whose personal details they are using to get in touch.
How to be a Responsible Gambler
While most people can somewhat control their gambling, some people are unable to. However, responsible gaming will not only ensure you enjoy the game, but it will also save you the stress of losing more than you can afford. Below we look at some tips for responsible gaming.
Take it as Entertainment, not a Source of Income
Gambling can be fun, and it is meant to be. To be on the safe side and to enjoy responsible gaming, think of it as buying a ticket to the movies or to a Toronto Blue Jays game. If your team, that’s great, if you lose, then there is always the next time. In any case, the point is to enjoy it while it lasts and not take the results personally.
Stick to a Pre Set Budget Limit
Keeping track of money as you enjoy your gambling stint can be an uphill battle. But by setting a limit within your budget, you are better positioned to track your spending and stop when it matters. It is time to stop if you have already spent what you had set as your gambling limit. Discipline is crucial in this aspect.
Stick to a Pre Set Time Limit
Regardless of the outcome of your streak – winning or losing – always set a time limit and stick to it. When you are gambling, time seems to fly and the excitement and thrill can make it seem trivial.
Avoid Chasing the Losses
Gambling is a perfect definition for the popular quip – you win some, you lose some. Whenever any of those scenarios are at play, the most important thing is that you stay on budget. Understandably, it can be extremely tempting to try and recoup your loses by committing more money than you had planned. Responsible gaming is about avoiding chasing losses as much as you can as it can lead you to be a problem gambling.
Don’t be Superstitious
Understanding that nothing is cast on a stone is one way of practicing responsible gaming. If there is a lucky table you prefer or you constantly play the same game where you hit it big, then that’s all good. However, it is imperative to understand that gambling is about luck and chance and superstition does not guarantee you a win.
Most importantly, your gambling luck has no sway whatsoever on your personal life or luck in your normal life!
Gambler’s Fallacy Will be Your Downfall
Most gamblers believe that if the roulette wheel shows one color a certain number of times, then it must show the other color at a particular moment. Gambling is a game of chance and an unpredictable one at that. Subsequent outcomes are independent of previous ones.
Understand Your Games Rules and Odds
There is a huge variety of gambling games available and every gambler has their preference regardless of the odds. Often, card games like blackjack and poker have some of the highest odds. That said, at other times, certain bets can have the lowest odds of any game.
On the other hand, Slot games and Keno are even less reliable, but there are those that have a field day and win big on them. Understanding the game and its rules will help you gamble responsibly.
Only Play with Your Own Money and Money You Can Afford to Lose
Responsible gaming is about knowing when to play and when to hit the road. Because of the unpredictability of the practice, it is always a bad idea to play with borrowed money. Whether it is from friends, family, or a credit card, if you can’t afford it from your own pocket, then refrain from spending it on any form of entertainment, especially gambling.
Don’t Drink and Gamble
Okay, don’t drink and drive is more common, but drinking and gambling can be as hazardous. Gambling is supposed to be fun, and often, a gambling setting comes with party essentials. Responsible gaming, on the other hand, calls for a sober mind to make the right decisions.
Avoid Gambling When you are Stressed or Depressed
Gambling is best enjoyed with friends and as a fun and exciting pass time rather than as a stress reliever. Escaping to gambling during tough times is a recipe for disaster and will potentially lead you into bigger problems. When the times are tough, don’t turn to gambling. Only gamble when you have a sober mind and when the times are good.
Gaming is fun and it should be. However, it is up to you to know when to stop as a responsible gamer. Experts advise that gambling should be occasional and not a daily routine. Besides, a routine, repeated, turns practice into a habit – and that is when the problems begin to show.
Like with everything in life, striking a balance between your entertainment activities will protect you from falling victim to one. Even if you enjoy gambling more, it is utterly important that you mix it up with some other fun activities.
More importantly, keeping track of your gambling habits is crucial. Often, it is unidentified signs that grow out of proportion into full-blown problems. By tracking your gambling habits and identifying the problems as they arise, you are better placed to either reduce your gambling or seek help.
In the end, if you realize you have developed a gambling problem or addiction, you should talk to a friend or find a service that helps gamblers deal with their addictions. The bottom line is, responsible gaming should be a source of entertainment and fun rather than stress and misery.