Gambling vs Gaming

Added on December 18, 2018, in Gambling Articles by Aleksandra Zolotic

Name it the way you want, they are both about playing games, right?

But, hey, if that’s the truth (and it basically is) …

…how come children shouldn’t gamble? On the other hand, why is there so much fuss about children playing games?

Don’t these two make NO sense at all? Or they actually make MORE sense than we can imagine?

Don’t let this shock and confuse you instantly! We shall do our best to explain both of thesethe blurry line between them, and how to stay safe and have fun.

Let’s start with gambling

By definition, gambling is a risk-taking action where one plays games of chances and skills in order to gain some money. Those games involve table games, video poker, sports betting, craps, keno, bingo etc.

Back then, an action like this one necessarily involved some money in order to gamble, because brick and mortar casinos didn’t have the option to play with no money.

However, with online casinos, the definition and approach both have changed. That’s due to FREE-TO-PLAY option. People can gamble for hours and hours, without having to spend a single coin. Just for fun!

Now, is that gambling or gaming?

This is exactly where all the discussion started. It’s really difficult to make out where gaming stops and transforms into gambling.

How would you define gaming?

One of the definition is that gaming is an action of practicing to play video games, either on some consoles, computer or mobile phone.

Moreover, gaming also refers to miniature wargaming as well as RPGs (role-playing games).

However, the dictionary prepared a huge surprise for us, as an alternative translation for gaming is…

the action of practicing to play GAMBLING games?!

With that having said, we came to another critical point.

Yes, that’s true when we speak in terms of professional gamblers who earn for living by gambling. They inevitably have to practice in order to maintain their level of skills at some good point and become better than that.

But, what’s with the children?

When a definition itself is not clearly defined (the moment of pure self-irony!), how can one expect children to make a difference? How can they be sure what’s allowed and what isn’t?

Of course, this is where parents and adults step in, by helping them to stay on the right way. At least until they come of age and become able to think with their own heads.

They should keep a watchful eye on free-to-play games, apps and all the luring things which may lead to potential dangers. Games, all sorts of them, are designed to attract you. But knowing where the fun stops and harm begins is the key to all the problems.

Final thoughts on gambling and gaming

As you can see, it does matter how you name it, because it reflects your personal attitude towards it. However, individuals are far less problematic than the industries. The industries tend to use exactly the fact that the line between these two is so unclear.

In order to make it sound less harmful, they will call it gaming, to disguise the profit-making aspect of the whole thing. Precisely for that negative stereotype, many people from the industry started referring to it as gaming rather than gambling.

The problem is not with people who are aware of the real difference and who approach both gaming and gambling reasonably. Those who are unstable, and who are not either willing or brave to admit what they actually do are the ones which can cause problems.

Language is a tricky weapon, and depending on how you use it, sometimes it misleads and confuses. Moreover, it’s not an uncommon thing to use it to make certain ideas sound more profound than they actually are.

Some say that this calculated usage of terminology leads to an increased number of people who gamble. That’s because non-consumers (non-gamblers, to be precise) tend to think of gambling as legitimate if one refers to it as gaming.

But the truth is that people would gamble anyway because online casinos made it available more than ever.

But, to finish the whole thing with a bright point…

…the KEY is in knowing what you do, how you do it and why you do it. Only then will the actions of gaming and gambling be harmless both to you, your emotions and finances, as well as the relationship with other people.