Cause for Concern: Gaming, Gambling & Technology
As in so many other areas of modern life, the power of technology is quickly transforming both the industry and experience of gambling. However, this technology is not only changing the corporate business and personal pleasures of gambling, it is also enabling them to expand and overlap with what were previously non-gambling experiences.
One good example of this trend is the growing overlap between traditional gambling and immersive video gaming (think World of Warcraft, Call of Duty, etc.). One part of the overlap is the application of ever-evolving gaming technology to traditional gambling, such as using the immersive features to make gambling more fun. Of course, being more fun is often tied in to being more appealing and potentially addictive to problem gamblers.
On the other side of the overlap, there seems to be a growing trend of video-gamers adding gambling to their gaming experience. This trend is a notable concern because the populations most associated with this type of play are teens and young adults.
Also, as we look at the world around us (and in the mirror) we see that technological development is not only enhancing the experience, but also increasing accessibility, partly by industry expansion, but mostly by the power of the internet and all the ingenious devices we use to interact with it.
One big problem is–as with problem gambling generally, which is often called “The Hidden Addiction”—the reality of this trend and the dangers accompanying it remain largely “Hidden”. That is, the potential dangers and experienced consequences of these things is either largely unknown or unclear to the “average person”.
But while the solution to treating those who have been affected by problem gambling or problem gaming is usually complex, the work of prevention is relatively simple—be aware (informed) and share that simple awareness with those around you.
As implied, I wrote about this topic in part because we have begun to see an increase in the number of cases. If some part of this subject is or is becoming a concern for you, feel free to contact me. For more information about problem gambling check out our website and media resources linked below: