Online pokies. Some call them the crack cocaine of electronic gambling and for good reason. They can be very addictive for some people and it’s good to be cautious. This story about pokies addiction is quite disturbing. Pokies differ from video games in that they are for real money most of the time allowing people with poor self control to lose massive amounts of money in short periods of time as the house always wins and pokies are essentially online slots.
Sharon in the story got so addicted that she commited an armed robbery and ended up in rehab for gambling addiction. This is an extreme example though and the pokies are not all entirely to blame. For one thing it is up to the individual person to have the self control to know when to call it quits and cut your losses. There are plenty of people that are capable of goiing out and having a punt on the local slot machines. One might even say that gambling in Australia is one of the most popular parts of the culture.
In that ladies defence though gambling is addictive and it has scientific reasons behind this. In the human brain there are chemical reactions that are triggered by behavior that is know to increase our chances of survival. Winning money qualifies for this because it would help to buy resources for us. So what happens when people like Sharon play pokies is that their brain cant handle the increase of dopamine and they end up getting addicted to the high of winniing and will stop at nothing to get that feeling. Even if they lose over and over again. Some experts say that the chemical reaction that occurs in the brain is very similar to what happens with crack cocaine or other drugs.
The pokies industry makes an estimated 12 billion dollars per year which is no small figure. That money could certainly be put to better use.