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Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Dear Heather,

Interesting research and findings.

I am curious to know the frequency of the pop-up messages, and whether the number of times the subject saw a message had any correlation to the number of bets they made or to the amount of money bet?

I am aware of research conducted in Australia looking at whether pop-up messages appearing during forced breaks in play influences gambling behaviour.

The study by Monaghan & Blaszczynski, (2009) examined the most effective message
content in addition to evaluating the mode of display of warning messages. They found that messages aimed at reducing irrational beliefs about gambling were shown to be
significantly less effective than messages encouraging players to reflect on their own behaviour. (e.g. Do you know how long you have been playing? Do you need to take a break?). Self‐appraisal messages had a significantly greater impact on gambling behaviours during sessions of play and in subsequent sessions of play in the two weeks after the experimental session.


Monaghan, S. (2008). Review of Pop‐Up Messages on Electronic Gaming Machines as a Proposed Responsible Gambling Strategy. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, 6, 214‐222. DOI 10.1007/s11469‐007‐9133‐1

Monaghan, S. (2009) Responsible gambling strategies for Internet gambling: The theoretical and empirical base of using pop‐up messages to encourage self‐awareness. Computers in Human Behavior, 25(1), 202‐207. DOI 10.1016/j.chb.2008.08.008

Monaghan, S. & Blaszczynski, A. (2009). Impact of mode of display and message content of responsible gambling signs for electronic gaming machines on regular gamblers. Journal of Gambling Studies. DOI 10.1007/s10899‐009‐9150‐z

Monaghan, S. & Blaszczynski, A. (2010). Electronic Gaming Machine Warning Messages: Informative versus self‐evaluation. Journal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary & Applied, 144(1), 83‐96. DOI: 10.1080/00223980903356081



Thanks for your interest in this post, Sue.

According to the paper, participants saw a total of eight pop-up messages: one message after each of the first 8 blocks, with each block consisting of 5 gambling trials. Participants saw no messages during the final block, which consisted of an endless number of all-losing trials. I’m guessing that because everyone in the message conditions saw the same number of messages, it didn’t make sense to examine the correlation between the number of messages and betting behavior.

And thanks for providing this additional information about the effects of different types of messages. In this current study, the authors only used messages aimed at changing irrational beliefs. It would be interesting to use the same Lucky Wheel paradigm with excessive gamblers and compare the effects of these two types of messages.

Are there any more studies that will be done on pathological gamblers?

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