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Free online gambling dangerous to students, study claims

Free online gambling dangerous to students, study claims A study commissioned by the Oregon Department of Human Services claims that free online gambling is one of the most dangerous forms of gambling among the state's students. According to the survey, 33% of children between the ages of 12 and 17 have engaged at free online gambling at some point, making "free online gambling" the most popular gambling activity among youths in Oregon, surpassing the previous leader - betting on card games. "It disconnects them from the reality of the situation. We're afraid that they're going to want to do this more and more. If they do this with money, they're at risk for many things," Wendy Hausotter, problem gambling prevention coordinator with Oregon Department of Human Services, was quoted. Hausotter said state officials plan to meet with gambling prevention specialists next month to figure out how to curb free online gambling and get the message out.

 Almost all of the online gambling websites today offer their potential customers to play for free, before deciding to deposit real money. And unlike the real money accounts with the online gambling websites, in order to play for free, all you need is an email address and a name, which fails to screen for the age of players. Arguments emerge that since there are no real money or anything of value being wagered when gambling online for free, the so-called "free online gambling" is a misleading term. Although the details of the survey are a little sketchy and we don't know what for of "free online gambling" the majority of the students were involved (casino games, poker, etc.) and important fact has been missed by the officials - the office pools. Popular websites from ESPN all the way to ABC offer online office pools (for example March Madness), which in their basics are nothing more than free online gambling. Online poker games offered on websites such as Yahoo! Games also constitute for free online gambling. A perfect example of taking an online gambling survey with a grain of salt.

 Published on 06/02/2008

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