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Gambling on fixed odds betting terminals still a problem

By mr-gambling on 2014-03-11 17:26:03

Fixed odds betting terminals or FOBTs are in the general gambling news again as the UK Government tries to work out what to do to curb them. Already there are limits on the number of FOBTs which can be placed in a bookmaker but if you believe other reports in the gambling news, the way round that one is to open more shops. How much of a problem they really are is a bit of a mystery with some saying that profits from these machines account for half of some shops takings but how different is that from online gambling? Others claim that it is the ability to gamble on a roulette wheel every 20 seconds or so but at online casinos you can already do similar. William Hill is reported in the gambling news as saying that if the income from these machines is reduced it will affect the horse and dog gambling industry with animals having to be put down because there is no money available as prize money. A bit extreme possibly but others are trying to train staff to spot the signs of problem gambling and others are being trained in how to approach customers that might have a problem although others in the gambling news known how difficult that might be. In the Irish gambling world we do not have this problem as there are no FOBTs but online gambling is available everywhere and it is general knowledge that if somebody wants to gamble they will find a way. Problem gamblers are quickly identified in the online gambling world and every player has the option of limiting their deposits and once fixed it takes time to change so possibly online gambling is actually safer than these machines. The anti FOBT brigade is also not playing totally open when they point out that it is possible to bet and lose £300 per minute; it probably is but how many people do it? The overwhelming majority of online gambling is done by people who have absolutely no problem whatsoever.