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Coal seam gas has proved a hot topic ahead of the NSW election, not only on the campaign trail but also on social media, where a ‘social mood reader’ can reveal the depth of community feeling. NewZulu/Tony Markham/AAP

Finding new ways to track voters' moods, beyond polls and punters

Beyond polls and betting markets, how else can we gauge how people feel ahead of future elections? Social media is a goldmine, and one of the newer ways to tap into it is with a "social mood reader".
Secret footage revealed that Australian greyhound trainers are still using the banned practice of live baiting. Animals Australia

Greyhound racing in disgrace as riches push trainers to barbarity

Australia’s greyhound industry is reeling from the ABC’s Four Corners expose, featuring graphic footage of racing dogs tearing other mammals apart in the illegal training practice of live baiting. The…
China’s moves against the global gambling industry needs to understood against historical and domestic concerns. AAP/ EPA/YM EPA

What lies behind China’s clampdown on foreign casinos

China’s recent clampdown on foreign casinos has been portrayed as an extension of Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption drive, but it is also more than that. The motives behind Xi’s declaration of war against the…
Damien Oliver (left) rides Fiorente to victory in Race 7 the Emirates Melbourne Cup at the 2013 Melbourne Cup. AAP Image/Hamish Blair

Do historical trends in Melbourne Cup champions point to a winner?

If you’re looking for a definitive answer on who will win the Melbourne Cup – the world’s most prestigious two-mile handicap – I’m afraid I’m going to leave you sorely disappointed. What I can offer is…
Study the form guide all you like – on big race days, your money’s probably safer in your pocket. AAP/Joe Castro

How betting works – and why the Melbourne Cup skews the odds

Australia’s iconic sporting event – the Melbourne Cup – will see more than 100,000 punters pack into Flemington Racecourse this Tuesday, while those at work around the country pause to tune in to The Race…
Casinos like this one in Maryland bring benefits as well as costs. The challenge is working out which is greater. www.marylandlivecasino.com

Economic benefits of casinos likely to outweigh costs

During the past two decades, the US casino industry has expanded dramatically. According to the American Gaming Association, there are now nearly 1,000 commercial and tribal casinos in the country. Plans…
Check for that little white box before you step up to the table … Antoine Taveneaux

This is why there are so many defibrillators in casinos

My brief experience in a casino was pretty typical, I’d say. Flashing lights. The faint smell of booze. Not much chatter among patrons. The sounds of dice rolling, machines buzzing, and coins clanking…
For some vulnerable gamblers, social casino games can trigger a desire to gamble for real money, while for others the games can act as a useful distraction. shutterstock

Social casino games can help – or harm – problem gamblers

Free-to-play social online games that simulate gambling are a hugely popular, and profitable, new phenomenon, but concerns have been raised about how innocent these games really are. Our recently published…
Recent changes to gambling regulation in Queensland will allow for a rapid expansion of the industry. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Effective gambling regulation is not just ‘red tape’

The Queensland government has recently implemented changes to poker machine regulation under the banner of “red tape reduction”. Some of these are relatively minor at first glance; others have more obvious…
The proposed Aquis casino in Cairns is likely to be underwritten by the poker machine losses of local residents. AAP/Aquis Great Barrier Reef

This time is different? The local costs of Cairns' new casino

The proposed Aquis casino resort in Cairns is edging ever closer to regulatory approval. The development is touted by proponents as a “man-made wonder of the world” and will cost billions to develop. The…
The introduction of a $1 maximum bet for poker machines, as has been proposed in Victoria, might not end problem gambling, but it would certainly reduce its harmful effects. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

A $1 maximum bet on pokies would reduce gambling harm

The Greens have tabled a bill in the Victorian parliament that would introduce a maximum bet of $1 per spin for the state’s 30,000 poker machines. While the bill is almost certain to fail, the introduction…
Gambling products are only harmful when people consume too much of them. Carol Von Canon

Responsible gambling: why occasional use is generally safe

Most people are aware of the harms of problem gambling. Playing pokie machines, placing bets and visiting casinos can be a very expensive form of entertainment. And when gamblers lose more than they can…
Research a better bet than an octopus oracle. Roland Weihrauch/EPA

How to minimise losses when gambling on the World Cup

Given my academic background it may come as little surprise that when I gamble, I expect to lose in the long run. But, that is not to say that I don’t have some golden rules that I apply in gambling situations…
The long-held suspicion that high per capita expenditure in poker machine venues leads to high rates of problem gambling can now be confirmed by new research. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Our most profitable gambling venues are the most harmful

The more money spent per capita on pokies in a venue, the higher the rate of gambling problems in that venue. This is the straightforward conclusion of our research recently published in the journal Addiction…
According to a new report, academic research into gambling is heavily biased, and controlled by industry and government. AAP/Paul Jeffers

He who pays the piper calls the tune: gambling with research

Earlier this month, a team of British anthropologists from Goldsmiths College of the University of London published a report about the mundane, if very lucrative, world of Big Gambling and the cadre of…

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