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A cross-cultural study of weekly sports bettors in Australia and Spain
journal contributionposted on 19.08.2020, 00:00 by H Lopez-Gonzalez, Alexander Russell, Nerilee Hing, A Estévez, MD Griffiths
Betting on sport is one of the fastest developing forms of gambling internationally. Sports betting is attracting considerable scholarly, media, and regulatory attention due to the cultural salience of sport, and the rising public health concerns about the rapid proliferation and penetration of betting products in everyday life. Despite its global expansion, little is known regarding the comparative impact sports betting is having in different territories. This study aims to examine a sample of Australian (n = 738) and Spanish (n = 361) weekly sports bettors to assess their similarities and differences concerning sociodemographic characteristics, channels (i.e., online vs. offline) and devices used, in-play betting, and problem gambling severity. The findings showed high problem gambling scores among sports bettors in both countries, and consistent similarities in the association between problem gambling, in-play betting, and offline betting. Also, clear trends were observed between problem gambling, higher educational level, and female sport betting, particularly in the Australian sample. These results suggest a common pattern of risk factors for problematic sports betting and can help to inform worldwide regulatory efforts to tackle harmful sports betting-specific features such as in-play betting.