Documents

Download      Vignettes  170 KB

Schedule

The session will be available in both English and French

Abstract

This talk explores the ways that intersections between technology, media and the state have produced new forms of gambling and gaming, as well as a blurring of distinctions between the two. It argues that the drivers of mobile and social gambling - including the deployment of geolocational and data tracking technologies, the personalisation of advertising, as well as strategies that work to harness the power of online social networks - amass vast amounts of ‘Big Data’, and bring turbo charged features to game play. They also begin to undermine distinctions between ‘gambling’ and ‘gaming’; between virtual ‘rewards’ and ‘real’ cash, disrupting ideas about money and value in the process. The talk ends by suggesting that these new forms also enact a form of ‘algorithmic control’ through the continuous monitoring of online behaviour, which works to generate an ever-increasing intensification of both gambling and gaming within modern techno economic systems.

Speaker

The presentation will be in English and the PowerPoint will be available in French. Group discussions will be held in both English and French.

Description

Blockchain is the technology behind crypto currencies and these can be used to gamble. While straightforward, this is the least important overlap of blockchain, crypto and gambling. This workshop gives insights into their continuous entanglement. Trading crypto derivatives with a 100x leverage is discussed as well as decentralized gambling offers that are run by decentralized computer code without any ownership. The interactive discussion will focus on the implications for regulation and public health.

Learning Objectives

This workshop is for any participant who is interested in:

  • learning more about how blockchain can disrupt gambling as we currently know it;
  • a proactive discussion on how the adverse consequences of this development can best be mitigated.

Photo credit: CardMapr

Moderators

Vignettes supporting the group discussions will be available in French and English. Group discussions will be held in both English or French.

Description

You will be invited to a simulated discussion where you will be expected to take on the role of different stakeholders involved in the development of online tools in support of intervention. What are the most important factors to take into consideration? How will your experience with online intervention during the pandemic influence your reflections? Through this interactive workshop, we will delve further into what was discussed during the morning session.

Learning Objectives

This workshop aims to:

  • Examine the implications of online tools for intervention;
  • Incorporate and integrate knowledge from morning presentations;
  • Share your thoughts with other participants.

Photo credit: PureSolution

Moderators

The session will be available in both English and French

Abstract

Free-to-play games continue to blur the boundaries between games and gambling. Social casino apps, which bring together the wagering of casino play, with the aesthetics and progression mechanics of casual games, are one of the more visible examples of this trend. Social casino apps are free-to-play gambling games that let you wager digital credits in games of slots, poker, and blackjack, but without a payout. This allows social casino casino apps to avoid the legal restrictions of real-money gambling.

In this talk it will be argued that the industry behind social casino apps deserves closer scrutiny. Playtika, a leading developer of social casino apps, is used as a case study to illustrate how the social casino industry has expanded itself through the casualization of risk. Playtika started as a small developer of Facebook games in Herzliya, Israel before a strategic investment by the casino chain Caesars helped Playtika expand into a formidable force in social casino games.

Now, Playtika is in the middle of an initial public offering where it hopes to raise billions of dollars. In its S-1 disclosure form filed with the SEC, Playtika lists as significant risk factors its reliance on third-party app stores, where technical and regulatory changes could threaten its entire business model. The future of Playtika is in the hand of digital platforms just as much as it is in the hands of prospective investors. Playtika illustrates the ways in which digital platforms have converged games and gambling to create a more volatile and unpredictable app economy.

Speaker

The session will be available in both English and French

Abstract


Gambling is a popular leisure activity in many countries, and it takes different forms in different social and cultural contexts. Commercial gambling has seen exponential growth since the 1980s in Europe – driven by the liberalisation of regulation, new technologies and changing attitudes to risk. This growth has led to the development of a highly profitable and lucrative revenue stream for companies and governments. Despite COVID restrictions over the past year, overall revenues of the largest gambling companies grew due to the availability of online gambling.

Online gambling is the fastest growing sub-sector in the gambling industry especially for highly networked European consumers. Most companies and lotteries now offer mobile apps and there is an increasing use by companies of machine learning technologies to target potential gamblers and model, predict and retain gamblers. Further, social media companies and game companies are increasingly offering gambling like mechanics in their applications. The transnational nature of the online world means that regulation and public policy in these spaces is often lagging behind what is required, or missing entirely. This is especially the case in Ireland which shares a media and sporting ecology with the United Kingdom but lacks the developed regulatory and public health responses to gambling of its near neighbours.

In this talk I will bring a political economy and policy lens to gambling. I will focus on four key trends including: 1) the Mediatisation of Gambling and its impact on Sport 2) Datafication, AI and the Gambling Industry 3) Gambling, Gaming and Games and finally, 4) Public Policy, Risk and Responsibility. The talk is informed by a recently completed research project which explored gambling trends and harms internationally and in Ireland.

Kerr, Aphra, John O'Brennan, and Lucia Vazquez Mendoza. 2021. Gambling Trends, Harms and Responses. Ireland in an International Context.Maynooth University: Maynooth, Ireland. Available athttp://mural.maynoothuniversity.ie/14258/

Speaker