New Horizons 2014 registration now open…and lots of improvements are in the works

NHRG Web Site.jpgThe 2014 New Horizons in Responsible Gambling conference launched a brand new website this week, and registrations are now being accepted with terrific Early Bird discounts.  And the BCLC team is definitely on track to provide an even better learning and networking experience than the last one.

One new feature being tried this year is the introduction of a new way to learn and interact directly with researchers and others engaged in problem gambling treatment or prevention: poster sessions.

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Canadian gaming jurisdictions looking to improve VSE programs

VSE Brochure

BCLC’s VSE brochure

Over the past two to three years Canadian gaming jurisdictions such as Nova Scotia, Manitoba and British Columbia have undertaken major reviews of their Voluntary Self-Exclusion VSE programs, while others have continued to tweak their programs to improve their effectiveness for participants.  With the objective of continuous improvement they’ve also individually and collectively commissioned new research to test impacts of these changes or to advance understanding of new areas for improvement.

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Who’s responsible for gambling responsibly?

WellI recently ran across an article by Charles Livingstone (of Australia’s Monash University) with a headline that attracted my attention: “Responsible gambling and the spectacle of the ‘problem gambler.’ ”  In the article, Livingstone expresses the view that, while governments, casinos and others claim to care about problem gambling, their various efforts at responsible gambling amount to merely “transfer[ing] responsibility for gambling problems to end users rather than those profiting from the dangerous product.”  Continue reading

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Back to the future: New VSE study aims to build on prior learning

UFV green logoIn August 2011 BCLC released its first multi-year longitudinal study of participants in our Voluntary Self-Exclusion (VSE) program.  As I wrote in this space at the time, there was some very positive news affirming the benefits of the program, including: Continue reading

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Should online “social games” be regulated?

136169892Last week I had the opportunity to attend the 15th International Conference on Gambling & Risk Taking in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Compared to other gaming conferences this was a big one.- 450 registrants came together to hear presentations by 200 industry and academic experts on many facets of the global gaming industry. Mathematicians, lawyers, government policy experts, psychologists and psychiatrists, casino executives, gaming equipment manufacturers as well as a large number of students were all in attendance.

One of the most interesting sessions I attended was devoted to the topic of social gaming: interesting not just for the content, the format of the presentation itself was very novel.  The audience was presented with a fictitious scenario in which a social gaming development company was challenging newly-minted state legislation subjecting some of its games to the local gambling authority.  The presentation unfolded as a mock trial in which the company challenged the constitutionality of the new law.

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