The influence of gambling advertising on children: It’s all in the gaze

Onwuegbusi, Tochukwu, Roberts, Amanda, Sharman, Stephen and Hogue, Todd (2022) The influence of gambling advertising on children: It’s all in the gaze. In: Current Advances in Gambling Research, 19-20 May 2022, Radisson Blu, Cardiff.

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Item Type:Conference or Workshop contribution (Presentation)
Item Status:Live Archive


Promotion of gambling through sports betting, television/radio broadcasts and billboard advertisements has seen a surge in recent years. This may act to normalise gambling behaviour among young viewers, potentially grooming a new generation of problem gamblers. Public health data (e.g., alcohol and tobacco) suggests children’s exposure to advertising increases their intention to consume such products. However, obtaining a reliable measure of the exposure to gambling advertising on young people has been extremely difficult. We have developed a new data-driven methodology that directly tracks eye movements to reveal attentional biases towards gambling adverts and promotions by examining differences in young people’s eye gaze behaviour when watching gambling and non-gambling (control) moving adverts. We measured craving for gambling as well as problem gambling using questionnaires and used this to differentiate gaze behaviour between individuals who identified as problem and non-problem gamblers and with low and high craving for gambling. A total of 98 (16-18 years old) participants watched 16 video clips depicting gambling (N=12) and non-gambling (N=4) adverts. The data-driven eye-tracking method accurately predicted young people’s gambling craving on the basis of eye movement patterns. We also isolate video clips that best distinguish people on the low-high craving spectrum and revealed the section of each video clip with the largest group differences. Our findings help to better understand the contributory role of sports betting advertisement in influencing young people. It also helps to unravel the causal pathways between exposure and consumption, attitudes and the behaviours of consumers, especially among vulnerable youths.

Keywords:Advertising, Gambling, Sports Betting, Eyetracking, Group Comparisons, Gambling Craving
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C830 Experimental Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C810 Applied Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:49609
Deposited On:17 Jun 2022 13:51

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