Online Gambling Research Papers

Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

1. Gainsbury S, Wood R. Internet gambling policy in critical comparative perspective: the effectiveness of existing regulatory frameworks. Int Gambl Stud. 2011;11:309–323. doi: 10.1080/14459795.2011.619553.[Cross Ref]

2. Monaghan S. Responsible gambling strategies for Internet gambling: the theoretical and empirical base of using pop-up messages to encourage self-awareness. Comput Hum Behav. 2009;25(1):202–207. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2008.08.008.[Cross Ref]

3. American Psychiatric Association. DSM 5. American Psychiatric Association; 2013.

4. Dowling NA. Issues raised by the DSM-5 internet gaming disorder classification and proposed diagnostic criteria. Addiction. 2014;109(9):1408–9. doi: 10.1111/add.12554.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

5. H2 Gambling Capital. The online gambling market. Reported by digitial entertainment; 2014. Available from:

6. Global Betting and Gaming Consultants. Global Gaming Report (6th ed.). Castletown, Isle of Man, British Isles: Author; 2011.

7. H2 Gambling Capital . There’s nothing virtual about the opportunity in real-money gambling. Gibraltar: Odobo; 2013.

8. PricewaterhouseCoopers. Global gaming outlook. Dec 2011. Available from

9. Lycka M. Online gambling: towards a transnational regulation. Gaming Law Rev Econ. 2011;15(4):179–195. doi: 10.1089/glre.2011.15404.[Cross Ref]

10. Gambling Commission. Gambling participation: activities and mode of access. Gambling Commission. 2014 Apr. Available from: 2014. Apr

11. Commission P. Gambling. Government of Australia: Productivity Commission; 2010.

12.••. Gainsbury S, Russell A, Hing N, Wood R, Lubman D, Blaszczynski A. The prevalence and determinants of problem gambling in Australia: assessing the impact of interactive gambling and new technologies. Psychol Addict Behav. 2014;28(3):769–79. Using a nationally representative telephone survey, this paper compared problem gambling among Internet and non-Internet gamblers to reveal variables related to each. The findings demonstrate that Internet problem gamblers experience harms also related to land-based gambling and that gambling problems are related to overall involvement and intensity rather than the mode of access used.

13. Wardle H, Sproston K, Orford J, Erens B, Griffiths M, Constantine R, Pigott S. British gambling prevalence survey 2007. Nat Cen; 2007 Available from:

14. Gainsbury S, Wood R, Russell A, Hing N, Blaszczynski A. A digital revolution: comparison of demographic profiles, attitudes and gambling behavior of Internet and non-Internet gamblers. Comput Hum Behav. 2012;28(4):1388–1398. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2012.02.024.[Cross Ref]

15. McCormack A, Griffiths MD. Motivating and inhibiting factors in online gambling behaviour: a grounded theory study. Int J Ment Health Addict. 2012;10(1):39–53. doi: 10.1007/s11469-010-9300-7.[Cross Ref]

16. Wood RT, Williams RJ, Lawton PK. Why do Internet gamblers prefer online versus land-based venues? Some preliminary findings and implications. J Gambl Issues. 2007;20:235–252.

17. Cotte J, Latour KA. Blackjack in the kitchen: understanding online versus casino gambling. J Consum Res. 2009;35(5):742–758. doi: 10.1086/592945.[Cross Ref]

18. Gainsbury S, Parke J, Suhonen N. Attitudes towards Internet gambling: perceptions of responsible gambling, consumer protection, and regulation of gambling sites. Comput Hum Behav. 2013;29:235–245. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2012.08.010.[Cross Ref]

19.•. Gainsbury SM, Russell A, Hing N, Wood R, Blaszczynski A. The impact of Internet gambling on gambling problems: a comparison of moderate-risk and problem Internet and non-Internet gamblers. Psychol Addict Behav. 2013;27:1092–101. Based on a large online survey, moderate-risk and problem gamblers were compared based on their use of Internet gambling. The results demonstrate that Internet gamblers who experience gambling-related harms appear to represent a somewhat different group from non-Internet problem and moderate-risk gamblers—Internet gamblers were younger, engaged in a greater number of gambling activities, and were more likely to bet on sports.

20. Griffiths MD, Parke J. The social impact of internet gambling. Soc Sci Comput Rev. 2002;20(3):312–320. doi: 10.1177/08939302020003008.[Cross Ref]

21. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. National Gambling Impact Study Commission-Final Report; 1999. Available from

22. Watson S, Liddell P, Jr, Moore RS, Eshee WD., Jr The legalization of Internet gambling: a consumer protection perspective. J Public Policy Markk. 2004;23(2):209–213. doi: 10.1509/jppm.[Cross Ref]

23.•. Wood RT, Williams RJ. Problem gambling on the Internet: implications for Internet gambling policy in North America. New Media Soc. 2007;9(3):520–42. This paper was based on one of the first comprehensive studies of Internet gambling in a Canadian and international sample. The article provided substantial new insight into how Internet and land-based gamblers differ.

24. Adams GR, Sullivan AM, Horton KD, Menna R, Guilmette AM. A study of differences in Canadian university students' gambling and proximity to a casino. J Gambl Issues. 2007;19:9–18. doi: 10.4309/jgi.2007.19.1.[Cross Ref]

25. LaPlante DA, Shaffer HJ. Understanding the influence of gambling opportunities: expanding exposure models to include adaptation. Am J Orthopsychiat. 2007;77(4):616–623. doi: 10.1037/0002-9432.77.4.616.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

26. Reith G. Beyond addiction or compulsion: the continuing role of environment in the case of pathological gambling. Addiction. 2012;107:1736–1737. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2012.03669.x.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

27. Sévigny S, Ladouceur R, Jacques C, Cantinotti M. Links between casino proximity and gambling participation, expenditure, and pathology. Psychol Addict Behav. 2008;22(2):295–301. doi: 10.1037/0893-164X.22.2.295.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

28. Storer J, Abbott M, Stubbs J. Access or adaptation? A meta-analysis of surveys of problem gambling prevalence in Australia and New Zealand with respect of concentration of electronic gaming machines. Int Gambl Stud. 2009;9:225–244. doi: 10.1080/14459790903257981.[Cross Ref]

29. Welte JW, Wieczorek WF, Barnes GM, Tidwell MC, Hoffman JH. The relationship of ecological and geographic factors to gambling behavior and pathology. J Gambl Stud. 2004;20(4):405–423. doi: 10.1007/s10899-004-4582-y.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

30. Griffiths MD, Wardle H, Orford J, Sproston K, Erens B. Sociodemographic correlates of internet gambling: findings from the 2007 British gambling prevalence survey. Cyberpsychol Behav. 2009;12:199–202. doi: 10.1089/cpb.2008.0196.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

31. Hing N, Cherney L, Gainsbury S, Lubman D, Wood R, Blaszczynski A. Maintaining and losing control during Internet gambling: a qualitative study of gamblers’ experiences. New Med Soc. 2014. Online first 27-01-14 DOI: 10.1177/1461444814521140

32. McCormack A, Griffiths MD. A scoping study of the structural and situational characteristics of Internet gambling. Int J Cyber Behav Psychol Learm. 2013;3(1):29–49. doi: 10.4018/ijcbpl.2013010104.[Cross Ref]

33. Valentine G, Hughes K. Shared space, distant lives? Understanding family and intimacy at home through the lens of internet gambling. T I Brit Geogr. 2012;37(2):242–255. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-5661.2011.00469.x.[Cross Ref]

34. Wood RT, Williams RJ, Parke J. The relationship between Internet gambling and problem gambling. In: Williams RJ, Wood RT, Parke J, editors. Routledge Handbook on Internet Gambling. Oxon, UK; 2012. 200-212.

35.•. Gainsbury S, Russell A, Wood R, Hing N, Blaszczynski A. How risky is Internet gambling? A comparison of subgroups of Internet gamblers based on problem gambling status. New Media Soc. 2014. doi:10.1177/1461444813518185. Based on an online survey, problem and non-problem Internet gamblers were compared. Problem gamblers were shown to represent a distinct cohort of gamblers, demonstrating the heterogeneity of Internet gamblers. Problem gambling respondents were younger, less educated, had higher household debt, lost more money and gambled on a greater number of activities, and were more likely to use drugs while gambling as compared to non-problem and at-risk gamblers. For problem gamblers, Internet gambling poses unique problems related to electronic payment and constant availability leading to disrupted sleeping and eating patterns.

36. Hing N, Gainsbury S, Blaszczynski A, Wood R, Lubman D, Russell A. Interactive gambling. Report commissioned by Gambling Research Australia. Centre for Gambling Education & Research, Southern Cross University; 2014. Available from:

37. Siemens JC, Kopp SW. The influence of online gambling environments on self-control. Journal Public Policy Mark. 2011;30:279–293. doi: 10.1509/jppm.30.2.279.[Cross Ref]

38. Wood R, Williams R. Internet gambling: prevalence, patterns, problems, and policy options. Guelph, Ontario: Ontario Problem Gambling Research Centre; 2010.

39. GamCare. Briefing paper: GamCare annual statistics 2013/14. Available from: 2014.

40. Svensson J, Romild U. Incidence of Internet gambling in Sweden: results from the Swedish longitudinal gambling study. Int Gambl Stud. 2011;11(3):357–375. doi: 10.1080/14459795.2011.629203.[Cross Ref]

41. Hing N, Russell AMT, Gainsbury SM, Blaszczynski A. Characteristics and help-seeking behaviors of internet gamblers based on most problematic mode of gambling. J Med Internet Res. 2015;17(1):E13. doi: 10.2196/jmir.3781.[PMC free article][PubMed][Cross Ref]

42. Wood R, Williams R. A comparative profile of the Internet gambler: demographic characteristics, game play patterns, and problem gambling status. New Media Soc. 2011;13:1123–1141. doi: 10.1177/1461444810397650.[Cross Ref]

43. Griffiths M, Wardle H, Orford J, Sproston K, Erens B. Internet gambling, health, smoking and alcohol use: findings from the 2007 British Gambling Prevalence Survey. Int J Ment Health Addict. 2011;9:1–11. doi: 10.1007/s11469-009-9246-9.[Cross Ref]

44. Kairouz S, Paradis C, Nadeau L. Are online gamblers more at risk than offline gamblers? Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw. 2012;15:175–180. doi: 10.1089/cyber.2011.0260.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

45. MacKay TL, Hodgins DC. Cognitive distortions as a problem gambling risk factor in Internet gambling. Int Gambl Stud. 2012;12(2):163–175. doi: 10.1080/14459795.2011.648652.[Cross Ref]

46. Petry NM. Internet gambling: an emerging concern in family practice medicine? Fam Pract. 2006;23:421–426. doi: 10.1093/fampra/cml005.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

47.•. Wardle H, Moody A, Griffiths M, Orford J, Volberg R. Defining the online gambler and patterns of behaviour integration: evidence from the British Gambling Prevalence Survey 2010. Int Gamb Stud. 2011;11(3):339–56. This paper presented analyses based on the 2010 British Gambling Prevalence Survey examining the integration of online and offline gambling, including gamblers that use both modes. This was one of the first papers to highlight that there are very few pure Internet-only gamblers and gambling problems appeared to be highest among those who were more involved in a variety of forms.

48. McBride J, Derevensky J. Internet gambling behavior in a sample of online gamblers. Int J Ment Health Addict. 2009;7(1):149–167. doi: 10.1007/s11469-008-9169-x.[Cross Ref]

49. LaPlante DA, Nelson SE, LaBrie RA, Shaffer HJ. Disordered gambling, type of gambling and gambling involvement in the British Gambling Prevalence Survey 2007. Eur J Public Health. 2011;21:532–7. doi: 10.1093/eurpub/ckp177.[PMC free article][PubMed][Cross Ref]

50.••. Philander KS, MacKay TL. Online gambling participation and problem gambling severity: is there a causal relationship? Int Gambl Stud. 2014;14:214–27. This paper presents the results of a sophisticated analysis of several gambling prevalence surveys. Controlling for involvement, the analyses demonstrate that Internet gambling is not related to gambling problems and public health concerns based on simplistic analyses may be overstated.

51. Welte JW, Barnes GM, Tidwell MO, Hoffman JH. The association of form of gambling with problem gambling among American youth. Psychol Addict Behav. 2009;23:105–112. doi: 10.1037/a0013536.[PMC free article][PubMed][Cross Ref]

52. Abbott M, Bellringer M, Garrett N, Mundy-McPherson S. New Zealand 2012 National Gambling Study: gambling harm and problem gambling: report number 2. Auckland, New Zealand: Gambling & Addictions Research Centre. AUT University; 2014.

53. Welte JW, Barnes GM, Tidwell MCO, Hoffman JH, Wieczorek WF. Gambling and problem gambling in the United States: changes between 1999 and 2013. J Gambl Stud. 2014[PMC free article][PubMed]

54. Planzer S, Gray HM, Shaffer HJ. Associations between national gambling policies and disordered gambling prevalence rates within Europe. Int J Law Psychiat. 2014;37(2):217–229. doi: 10.1016/j.ijlp.2013.11.002.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

55.••. Gainsbury S, Russell A, Blaszczynski A, Hing N. The interaction between gambling activities and modes of access: a comparison of Internet-only, land-based only, and mixed-mode gamblers. Addict Behav. 2015;41:34–40. Based on a large online survey, participants were compared based on their use of Internet, as well as land-based gambling. Results demonstrate that gamblers using both Internet and land-based modes had the greatest overall involvement in gambling and greatest level of gambling problems. This study confirms the importance of considering gambling involvement across subgroups of Internet or land-based gamblers. [PubMed]

56.•. Lloyd J, Doll H, Hawton K, Dutton WH, Geddes JR, Goodwin GM, et al. Internet gamblers: a latent class analysis of their behaviours and health experiences. J Gambl Stud. 2010;26(3):387–99. This paper reports the results of a large online survey in the UK using latent class analyses to identify subgroups of gamblers based on their use of the Internet to gamble. This was one of the first papers to move away from the dichotomy of Internet vs. non-Internet gamblers and made a significant contribution by showing that more involved gamblers had highest clusters of gambling problems and that Internet gamblers are a heterogeneous group.

57.••. LaPlante DA, Nelson SE, Gray HM. Breadth and depth involvement: understanding Internet gambling involvement and its relationship to gambling problems. Psychol Addict Behav. 2014;28:396–403. This is one of a series of papers based on an online database of actual gamblers from a European operator. This paper includes the innovative methodology of a self-report screen with behavioural data. Analysing gambling across different types of activities, this paper demonstrates that the extent of overall involvement (types of games and days played) is related to gambling problems.

58. Brosowski T, Meyer G, Hayer T. Analyses of multiple types of online gambling within one provider: an extended evaluation framework of actual online gambling behaviour. Int Gambl Stud. 2012;12(3):405–419. doi: 10.1080/14459795.2012.698295.[Cross Ref]

59. Currie SR, Hodgins DC, Wang J, El-Guebaly N, Wynne H, Chen S, et al. Risk of harm from gambling in the general population as a function of level of participation in gambling activities. Addiction. 2006;101:570–580. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2006.01392.x.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

60. Holtgraves T. Evaluating the problem gambling severity index. J Gambl Stud. 2009;25(1):105–120. doi: 10.1007/s10899-008-9107-7.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

61. LaPlante DA, Afifi TO, Shaffer HJ. Games and gambling involvement among casino patrons. J Gambl Stud. 2013;29:191–203. doi: 10.1007/s10899-012-9307-z.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

62. McCormack A, Shorter GW, Griffiths MD. An examination of participation in online gambling activities and the relationship with problem gambling. J Behav Addict. 2013;2(1):31–41. doi: 10.1556/JBA.2.2013.1.5.[PubMed][Cross Ref]

63. Tom MA, LaPlante DA, Shaffer HJ. Does Pareto rule Internet gambling? Problems among the “Vital Few” & “Trivial Many” J Gambl Bus Econ. 2014;8(1):73–100.

64. Dowling NA, Lorains FK, Jackson AC. Are the profiles of past-year Internet gamblers generalizable to regular Internet gamblers? Comput Hum Behav. 2015;43:118–128. doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2014.10.019.[Cross Ref]

65. Hayer T, Meyer G. Internet self-exclusion: characteristics of self-excluded gamblers and preliminary evidence for its effectiveness. Int J Ment Health Addict. 2011;9(3):296–307. doi: 10.1007/s11469-010-9288-z.[Cross Ref]

66. McCormack A, Shorter GW, Griffiths MD. Characteristics and predictors of problem gambling on the Internet. Int J Ment Health Addict. 2013;11(6):634–657. doi: 10.1007/s11469-013-9439-0.[Cross Ref]

Content Type: White Paper

Topics: Internet Gambling

While Internet gambling isn’t legal in all parts of the U.S., it is a growing form of gambling around the world and this often leads to speculation that its level of accessibility makes it more addictive than other types of gambling. The NCRG’s white paper, titled “Internet Gambling: An Emerging Field of Research,” provides the latest empirical, peer-reviewed research on Internet gambling to help address many questions that have been raised as U.S. federal and state government officials debate the legalization of online gambling.

This white paper includes the most reliable research available on online gambling; it also summarizes the findings of Harvard Medical School Professor Howard J. Shaffer, Ph.D., and colleagues, on this topic. It also contains research on online poker, sports betting and casino games, and includes information on online gambling among college students. Additionally, it suggests how the research can be used to develop responsible gaming strategies.


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