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Responsible gambling initiatives at Time2play AU

Written by
Reviewed by Elena I.

Our goal is to serve up the best possible player experience. Responsible gambling is a huge part of that.

At Time2play, we pride ourselves on being a transparent brand you can trust, and we’ve implemented a host of initiatives to transform that vision into reality.   

From an optimised scoring system to a player-centric community, here are the top things we’re doing to promote responsible gambling on our platform and the industry at large.

How we support responsible gambling

Thumbs up and down symbols next to terms of service and a seal of approval

Transparent ratings from real experts

We use the same criteria to rate online gambling sites — everyone gets the same test, and we give numeric scores based on concrete, measurable benchmarks. Our rating criteria are publicly available, so you can see that we’re not just making up numbers. 

A player with five-star review rating and thumbs up sign

Real, unedited player reviews

We encourage our readers to get involved. More voices = better quality, as far as we’re concerned. We want to hear from you, and we want you to tell us why you like/dislike each gambling site. It’s valuable to other players, and it’s useful for our own reviewing process too.

Arrow with rating bubbles and Time2play logo

The Playscore — a market-wide view

We’re not afraid to put our cards on the table. Our Playscore crawls the web for as many reviews as it can find, and amalgamates them into one easy average score. We’ll tell you what we think about each gambling site, and we’ll show you what everyone else thinks too.

Football player with a ball and heart

A real community

We encourage you to contribute to Time2play and engage with other readers. We think we’re pretty good at rating gambling sites, but we don’t want it to be just us. Hear from other players, learn from real people, support and advise each other. That’s how we win. 

Globe icon with a magnifying glass and shopping cart

A comprehensive one-stop shop

We’re aiming to expand to every major vertical of the global market, so our community, Playscores, and open systems will be available for whatever operator you want to get the dirt on.

Why we support responsible gambling

Betting is one of humanity’s oldest forms of entertainment, and we’ve all heard stories about lucky players who’ve done well for themselves. But the effects of problem gambling can be devastating, both to affected individuals and their loved ones. 

Gambling has its dangers, but with help available and protections in place, they’re mitigated. We’re committed to doing our part there. Here are some of the reasons why we take a pro-player and pro-people stance in the online gambling industry:

  • Widespread Issue

    Widespread issue

    There are over 73% of Australian adults are active gamblers, of which an astounding 46% are classified as being at risk of gambling harm.

  • Withdrawals

    Economic problems

    Problem gamblers can rack up debt very quickly, and are significantly more likely to experience severe financial issues than nongamblers. 

  • Work Issues

    Work trouble

    Severe problem gambling is linked to a range of negative consequences which affect work, studies, and productivity in general.

  • hammer

    Crime association

    Research shows that problem gambling is linked to increased crime, with most severe cases of criminal behaviour aimed at procuring money to pay debts or chase losses.

  • Nav Home

    Family trouble

    Those receiving treatment for pathological gambling often report losing or endangering a relationship because of gambling. Children and family members of problem gamblers show an increased risk of mental health issues, including depression and suicide ideation.

  • Kids

    Affecting minors

    According to the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS), one in five of surveyed teenagers reported participating in gambling activities despite the heavy age restrictions. The 2023 AIFS study also found that youth are more likely to gamble if a family member or friend engaged in similar risky behaviours.

We highlight these risks on many of our pages. Why? We have a few reasons:

How can we gamble responsibly?

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all definition of responsible gambling. It’s a broad set of initiatives by lawmakers and operators to promote fairness in the industry and to combat the potential harms associated with gambling. 

In Australia, the most common initiatives we find are dedicated pages on gambling sites and through regulatory bodies, guiding players to their responsible gambling tools and external help organisations.

Fair betting functionalities and features are an important part of responsible gambling too — any sportsbook site licensed in Australia will undergo regular auditing to ensure that everything is up to snuff.

While legal protections are in place, there are plenty of things we ourselves can do to better control gambling.

  • Real Money

    Money management

    Setting budgets before gambling is one of the most effective practices. It’s way easier to stop when you set yourself a hard number. Make sure it’s a number you can afford, and stick to it. Stopping at the finish line between black and white is an easier job than slowing down in the shades of grey.

  • balanza

    Expectation management

    One of gambling’s biggest myths: if you play long enough, you’re guaranteed a big win. You’re not. Think back on your favourite sporting comebacks, and you’ll know wins are never set in stone; an outcome, positive or negative, is never guaranteed in ANY gambling activity. It’s in the name!

  • Cuando Parar Stop

    Know when to stop

    Chasing losses is one of the worst things you can do in terms of responsible play. If you’re in a hole, you need to know when to stop digging. There’s no such thing as breaking a streak, and there is no strategy that will miraculously turn things around.

  • Mantente Informado

    Ask for help

    Just about every task in life is easier when you’ve got someone to rely on. Don’t hesitate to reach out and ask for help. It may be hard, but the benefits far outweigh the risks. If turning to those closest to you is too hard, there are many responsible gambling organisations that offer counselling and other services.

Gambling addiction — how to spot the signs

Even if you know about responsible gambling, spotting the signs of problem gambling isn’t always an easy task. You may think the signs would be obvious, but never write off the possibility — remember, prevention is always better than a cure. 

Follow the tips below and ask yourself critical questions to help assess the impact gambling has on you, your finances, and your loved ones.

Halt hand sign next to chip and coins
Tip 1

Stop cold turkey and see how you feel

Try to spend a few days without gambling. Is it harder than you thought it would be? Do you find yourself snappy and irritable? How often do you think about gambling? Do you find yourself eager to gamble again?

Warning sign next to a house
Tip 2

Analyse your money trail

What part of your budget does your gambling money come from? Have you ever had to cut back on living expenses to fund your gambling? Have you ever borrowed money to gamble, or stolen it?

Downward arrow behind coins, cash and dice
Tip 3

Think back over your losses

Have you ever ‘chased a loss’ — lost more than you wanted to, then lost even more trying to win it back? Has a loss ever made you feel stressed and distraught? Have you ever lied about losses, especially to those closest to you?

Parents and a kid inside a roulette wheel
Tip 4

Ask your friends and family

What does your family think about your gambling? Does it affect your relationships with them or your friends? How so? Are you relying on them to fund your gambling?

The questions posed are linked to signs of gambling addiction, and may help you spot problem behaviours or habits. That said, we’re not here to diagnose you. That’s not our job, and it’s not yours either. If these signs have caused any concern, please reach out to a professional.

Do you need help?

If you’ve decided to reach out, you have options. There are multiple support organisations that provide help to those who want to better control their gambling.

National Gambling Helpline

Get immediate assistance by calling the National Gambling Helpline on 1-800-858-858 for free, professional, and confidential support 24/7.

Gambling Help Online

Gambling Help Online is funded as part of an agreement between the Australian government with State and Territory governments, and provides Australians with an arsenal of tools and resources to combat problem gambling. Gambling Help Online is your go-to source as the most comprehensive database of all available resources and support agencies.

Find free 24/7 support and counselling online or through one of the provided local services.

Gam-Anon

Gam-Anon is an international support network that holds meetings all around the world, offering experience, strength, and hope through a 12-step self-help fellowship aimed at coping with emotional, mental, spiritual, and financial troubles caused by problem gambling. 

Gamblers Anonymous

Operating since 1957, Gamblers Anonymous is a community organisation, describing itself as having only one membership requirement — a desire to stop gambling. It runs hotlines in multiple regions, and has a web tool to help its users locate nearby meetings.

Australian Institute of Family Studies

The AIFS drives research with the goal of informing government policy and family services. If you want to learn more about gambling among Australians, signs of problem gambling, and look into other related studies and statistics, the AIFS is a verified and trusted source of tangible data that has your best interest at heart.

Government resources

The Department of Social Services offers a comprehensive overview of all responsible gambling initiatives, as well as help centres and resources for gamblers.

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare is another government resources that funds gambling-related research and drives policy change in Australia

Other responsible gambling tools

Other self-help options are available beyond contacting support organisations.

Access to gambling history

Many gambling sites keep a log of every bet you have made, all your wins, and all your losses. This can help you get a complete overview of your gambling, and help you decide when to stop.

Reality checks

These tend to work a little differently, depending on the operator. However, the basic premise is that players will be able to set a pop-up or notification which reminds them of gambling risks at frequent intervals. The interval can be based on money spent, time spent, etc.

Self-tests

There are also free self-tests available online that can indicate whether your gambling is problematic. Of course, these shouldn’t be taken as professional diagnoses, but they can help spur players towards getting help.

Operator-provided responsible gambling tools

Australia’s gambling sites are legally required to have account tools to help you control your play. These usually include features like the ones listed below: 

Protecting minors

Although it is illegal for anyone under 18 to gamble in Australia, research shows that nearly half of all young people in Australia have participated in some type of gambling activity by the age of 15, increasing to around three quarters by the age of 19 (Delfabbro, King, Lambos, & Puglies, Purdie et al., Journal of Gambling Studies, 391-405).

A longitudinal study on gambling activity among Australian teenagers and their parents, conducted by the AIFS, found that approximately 2.8% of 16-17 year olds classified as having problem gambling behaviours, and 9.3% as at risk of developing them.

The same research revealed that gambling had a direct correlation with substance abuse, such as alcohol consumption and smoking. Sadly, both gambling and associated risky behaviours also correlated with the normalisation of gambling as a common behaviour in families, often influencing minors to participate in similar activities.

And the number of affected, at-risk families is staggering. The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) stated that approximately 35% (6.8 million people) of Australians gamble regularly (at least on a monthly basis). Of which an estimated 1.38 million individuals are classified as being at some risk of experiencing gambling-related problems according to the Problem Gambling Severity Index.

Other vulnerable groups

Minors aren’t the only demographic who are disproportionately at risk from the dangers of gambling.

An exploratory study conducted by the Victorian Responsible Gaming Foundation also found correlation between homelessness and problem gambling in the older population, citing increased severity of problem gambling behaviors.

Another often overlooked factor is social inequality. A global study on social disadvantage and gambling severity, published in the European Journal of Public Health, found that problem and at-risk gambling was significantly more common among people who were unemployed, received social security benefits, or were from low-income families.

What can we do?

Fortunately, there are things we can do to try to limit exposure of gambling-related material to minors and the vulnerable.

Together, we can provide knowledge and build a better, stronger, safer gambling environment for all.

FAQs

What is responsible gambling?

There is no exhaustive definition of responsible gambling. However, it is largely concerned with employing processes, primarily set by lawmakers and gambling operators, which aim to make the gambling industry a better place, both through fairness and player protection initiatives.

Why is responsible gambling important?

Responsible gambling initiatives help protect vulnerable players and punters. They also prevent legal and licensed casinos from employing predatory practices that don’t have your best interest at heart.

How can I gamble responsibly?

Apart from using the responsible gambling tools provided by operators, you can employ some tips such as budget-setting, managing expectations, knowing when to stop, and asking for help. More details can be found in our section on gambling responsibly.

What are responsible gambling tools?

Responsible gambling tools allow players to impose limits on their gambling, giving them increased control over it. These include limits on play time and financial losses and even include the power to temporarily or semi-permanently ban yourself from all gambling activities. Learn more in our section on responsible gambling tools.

Where can I get help for problem gambling?

There are various organisations that help gamblers across Australia to find support at critical moments. The National Gambling Helpline (1-800-858-858) and Gambling Help Online are the fastest ways to get help, offering immediate assistance, counselling, and a database of other resources. A more comprehensive list can be found in our Get Help section.

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