Submission Type

Lightning Talk

Submission Title

A Magical Mystery (Global) Tour of Esports and Gambling

Disciplines

Gaming and Casino Operations Management | Other Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Sports Studies

Abstract

Gambling has become an increasingly central component of the esports and gaming industries, and jurisdictions around the world have had to continually revisit their duties in review of new products that blur the lines between gambling and gaming. Even as discussions progress on how industry, regulators, and other stakeholders should be approaching the continual technological developments in gambling and gaming, the state of play continues to evolve.

Different cultures and jurisdictions, meanwhile, all have unique relationships with these acts, and these differences affect the lenses through which we view esports and gambling. Competitive esports is currently comprised of over twenty game titles (and thousands more in casual play) across different genres and platform access, all with underlying regional and cultural preferences. In ASEAN countries, for example, mobile games dominate esports and gambling investment is minimal. In European and North American countries, meanwhile, PC and console gaming are most popular and gambling plays a larger, more public role in esports.

This presentation will consider the major current trends in esports and gambling, such as game integrity, branding, mode of access, big data use, and relationship with sport, and discuss how these themes present themselves in different parts of the globe and thus affect different cultural lenses that are applied.

Keywords

gambling, esports, video games, mobile games, data, casinos

Author Bio

Dr. Brett Abarbanel is Director of Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, International Gaming Institute, with a joint appointment at the UCLA Gambling Studies Program. Dr. Abarbanel's research covers Internet gambling policy and behavior, esports and gambling, operations and technology use, and responsible gambling and community relations. Dr. Abarbanel is the co-executive editor of the UNLV Gaming Research & Review Journal and editorial board member at International Gambling Studies and Harvard’s Division on Addiction’s Brief Addiction Science Information Source. Dr. Abarbanel also serves on the International Advisory Panel for Singapore’s National Council on Problem Gambling. She is a founding director of the Nevada Esports Alliance, which promotes development of best practices at the intersection of the esports and regulated gambling industries.

Funding Sources

There are no funding sources to report for this presentation content.

Competing Interests

Dr. Abarbanel has received funding (2013–2018) from the Manitoba Gambling Research Program, GP Consulting, U.S.-Japan Business Council, Wynn Las Vegas, Victoria Responsible Gambling Foundation, Bermuda Casino Gambling Commission, the State of Nevada, Canadian Partnership for Responsible Gambling, iDevelopment and Economic Association, Majestic Star Casinos, Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling, MGM Resorts International, and Caesars Entertainment. She has received reimbursement for travel from Association Cluster Sport International, British Columbia Lottery Corporation, International Association of Gaming Advisors, GambleAware, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, Ultimate Media Ventures, Canadian Partnership for Responsible Gambling, and IGT Latin America. She is a member of the Singapore National Council on Problem Gambling International Advisory Panel, for which she receives compensation for her time.

Comments

No hallucinogens will be consumed during the Magical Mystery (Global) Tour!

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A Magical Mystery (Global) Tour of Esports and Gambling

Gambling has become an increasingly central component of the esports and gaming industries, and jurisdictions around the world have had to continually revisit their duties in review of new products that blur the lines between gambling and gaming. Even as discussions progress on how industry, regulators, and other stakeholders should be approaching the continual technological developments in gambling and gaming, the state of play continues to evolve.

Different cultures and jurisdictions, meanwhile, all have unique relationships with these acts, and these differences affect the lenses through which we view esports and gambling. Competitive esports is currently comprised of over twenty game titles (and thousands more in casual play) across different genres and platform access, all with underlying regional and cultural preferences. In ASEAN countries, for example, mobile games dominate esports and gambling investment is minimal. In European and North American countries, meanwhile, PC and console gaming are most popular and gambling plays a larger, more public role in esports.

This presentation will consider the major current trends in esports and gambling, such as game integrity, branding, mode of access, big data use, and relationship with sport, and discuss how these themes present themselves in different parts of the globe and thus affect different cultural lenses that are applied.