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For example, the prospect theory introduced by Kahneman and Tversky 4 and its variant cumulative prospect theory 5 have been adopted in modeling casino gambling 6. In parallel to the theoretical approach, numerous studies focus on the empirical analysis of gambling behaviors, aiming at explaining the motivations behind problematic gambling behaviors.
However, parametric models that quantitatively describe empirical gambling behaviors are still missing. Our goal is to provide such a parametric model for describing human wagering activities and risk attitude during gambling from empirical gambling logs. However, it is very difficult to obtain gambling logs from traditional casinos, and it is hard to collect large amounts of behavior data in a lab-controlled environment.
Therefore in this paper we will focus on analyzing online gambling logs collected from online casinos. Recent years have seen an increasing trend of online gambling due to its low barriers to entry, high anonymity and instant payout. For researchers of gambling behaviors, online gambling games present two advantages: simple rules and the availability of large amounts of gambling logs. In addition to the usual forms of gambling games that can be found in traditional casinos, many online casinos also offer games that follow very simple rules, which makes analyzing the gambling behavior much easier as there are much fewer degrees of freedom required to be considered.
On the other hand, many online casinos have made gambling logs publicly available on their websites, mainly for verification purposes, which provides researchers with abundant data to work on. Due to the high popularity of online gambling, in a dataset provided by an online casino there are often thousands or even hundreds of thousands of gamblers listed.
Such a large scale of data can hardly be obtained in a lab environment. Prior research has begun to make use of online gambling logs. It is worth arguing that although our work only focuses on the behaviors of online gamblers, there is no reason to think that our conclusions cannot be extended to traditional gamblers. Naturally, we can treat the changing cumulative net income of a player during their gambling activities as a random walk process 8.
Within this paper, we will mainly focus on the analysis at the population level. Physicists have long been studying diffusion processes in different systems, and recently anomalous diffusive properties have been reported in many human activities, including human spatial movement 9 — 11 , and information foraging However, this explanation cannot be used in other types of gambling games where there is no interaction among gamblers e. In this paper, we want to expand the scope of our study to more general gambling games, check the corresponding diffusive properties, and propose some explanations for the observed behaviors.
One of our goals is to uncover the commonalities behind the behavior of online gamblers. To implement this, we analyze the data from different online gambling systems. The first one is skin gambling, where the bettors are mostly video game players and where cosmetic skins from online video games are used as virtual currency for wagering 8 , The other system is crypto-currency gambling, where the bettors are mostly crypto-currency users.
Different types of crypto-currencies are used for wagering. As the overlap of these two communities, video game players and crypto-currency users, is relatively small for now, features of gambling patterns common between these two gambling systems are possibly features common among all online gamblers.
Not only do we consider different gambling systems, but we also discuss different types of gambling games. In general, there are two frameworks of betting in gambling: fixed-odds betting, where the odds is fixed and known before players wager in one round; and parimutuel betting, where the odds can still change after players place the bets until all players finish wagering.
The four types of games we discuss in this paper will cover both betting frameworks see the Methods section. When a player attends one round in any of those games, there are only two possible outcomes: either win or lose. When losing, the player will lose the wager they placed during that round; whereas when winning, the prize winner receives equals their original wager multiplied by a coefficient. This coefficient is generally larger than 1, and in gambling terminology, it is called odds in decimal format 15 , Here we will simply refer to it as odds.
Note that the definition of odds in gambling is different than the definition of odds in statistics, and in this paper we follow the former one. When a player attends one round, their chance of winning is usually close to, but less than the inverse of the odds. In addition, the website usually charges the winner with a site cut commission fee , which is a fixed percentage of the prize. Although the four types of games are based on different rules, the payoffs all follow the same expression.
From Eq. The house edge represents the proportion the website will benefit on average when players wager. In a fair game or when we ignore the house edge, the expected payoff would be 0. We then focus on an analysis of risk attitude by studying the distribution of the odds players choose to wager with. We conclude by extending our discussion to the analysis of net incomes of gamblers viewed as random walks. Detailed information about the games and datasets discussed in this paper can be found in the Methods section.
From the viewpoint of the interaction among players, the games discussed in this paper can be grouped into two classes: in Roulette, Crash, and Satoshi Dice games, there is little or no interaction among players, whereas in Jackpot games, players need to gamble against each other. At the same time, from the viewpoint of wager itself, the games can also be grouped into two classes: In games A-G , the wagers can be an arbitrary amount of virtual currencies, such as virtual skin tickets or crypto-currency units, whereas in game H , the wagers are placed in the form of in-game skins, which means the wager distribution further involves the distributions of the market price and availability of the skins.
Furthermore, from the viewpoint of the odds, considering the empirical datasets we have, when analyzing the wager distribution, there are three situations: i For Roulette and Satoshi Dice games, the odds are fixed constants, and wagers placed with the same odds are analyzed to find the distribution.
At the same time, for each dataset we perform a distribution analysis of wagers at the aggregate level. Within the same dataset wagers placed under different maximum allowed bet values are discussed separately. We plot the complementary cumulative distribution function CCDF of the empirical data and the fitted distribution to check the goodness-of-fit, see Fig. For games A, B, C, E, F, G the best-fitted model is a log-normal distribution, and for game D the log-normal distribution is truncated at a maximum value.
For game H the wager distribution follows a power law - exponential - power law pattern. In games A — G , where players are allowed to choose arbitrary bet values, the wager distribution can be best fitted by log-normal distributions 3. The fitting lines represent the log-normal fittings. Wagers placed under the different maximum allowed bet values are discussed separately, e.
On the other hand, in game H where wagers can only be in-game skins, the wager distribution is best described by a pairwise power law with an exponential transition, see Eq. The red dotted line represents the log-normal fitting and the blue solid line represents the fitting of a pairwise power law with an exponential transition.
Meanwhile in game D , the fitted log-normal distribution is truncated at an upper boundary x max , which might result from the maximum allowed small bet value and the huge variation of the market price of crypto-currencies. During model selection, we notice that when we select different x min , occasionally a power-law distribution with exponential cutoff is reported to be a better fit, but often it does not provide a decent absolute fit on the tail, and overall the log-normal distribution provides smaller Kolmogorov-Smirnov distances, see the Methods section.
On the other hand, as we have pointed out in the previous study 8 , when players are restricted to use in-game skins as wagers for gambling, the wager distribution can be best fitted by a shifted power law with exponential cutoff. Now, with a similar situation in game H , where wagers can only be in-game skins, we find that the early part of the curve can be again fitted by a power law with exponential cutoff, as shown in Fig.
However, this time it does not maintain the exponential decay of its tail; instead, it changes back to a power-law decay. The overall distribution contains six parameters, given by the expression. We believe that when players are restricted to use in-game skins as wagers, the decision to include one particular skin in their wager is further influenced by the price and availability of that skin.
These factors make the wager distribution deviate from the log-normal distribution, which is observed in games A-G. This is very clear when comparing the wager distributions of games G and H as both games are jackpot games of skin gambling, and the only difference is whether players are directly using skins as wagers or are using virtual skin tickets obtained from depositing skins.
This commonality of log-normal distribution no longer holds when this arbitrariness of wager value is violated, e. Log-normal distribution has been reported in a wide range of economic, biological, and sociological systems 17 , including income, species abundance, family size, etc. Economists have proposed different kinds of generative mechanisms for log-normal distributions and power-law distributions as well. One particular interest for us is the multiplicative process 18 , The results reveal that the values of consecutive bets exhibit a strong positive correlation, with all the correlation coefficients larger than 0.
At the same time, the bet values are following gradual changes, rather than rapid changes. These conclusions can be confirmed by the small mean values and small variances of log-ratios between consecutive bets. Correlation analysis shows that there is a strong positive correlation between consecutive bets, along with the small mean values and variances of log-ratio between consecutive bets.
Satoshi Dice E is excluded here as individual gamblers in the dataset are not distinguishable. The high probability of staying on the same wager indicates that betting with fixed wager is one of the common strategies adopted by gamblers. The distribution of the logarithmic of the ratio log-ratio between consecutive bet values.
For games A — C , the log-ratio can be described by a Laplace distribution. For games D , F — H , the log-ratio presents bell-shaped distribution. In general, the distributions are symmetric with respect to the y-axis, except in games D , F.
The multiplication process can be explained by the wide adoption of multiplicative betting systems. Although betting systems will not provide a long-term benefit, as the expected payoff will always be 0 in a fair game, still they are widely adopted among gamblers. A well-known multiplicative betting system is the Martingale sometimes called geometric progression In Martingale betting, starting with an initial wager, the gambler will double their wager each time they lose one round, and return to the initial wager once they win.
Apart from multiplicative betting, there are many other types of betting systems, such as additive betting and linear betting The reasons why multiplicative betting systems are dominant in our datasets are: 1 Martingale is a well-known betting system among gamblers; 2 Many online gambling websites provide a service for changing the bet value in a multiplicative way.
For example, for the Crash games csgofast-Crash C and ethCrash D , both websites provide a simple program for automatically wagering in a multiplicative way. For the Roulette games and Coinroll F , the websites provide an interface with which the gambler can quickly double or half their wager.
However, for Satoshi Dice E and csgospeed-Jackpot G , no such function is provided, yet we still observe similar results, indicating that gamblers will follow a multiplicative betting themselves. We can see that although there is a high probability for sticking to the same bet values, the most likely outcome after losing a round is that the gambler increases their wager. When winning one round, gamblers are more likely to decrease their wager. This means that negative-progression strategies are more common among gamblers than positive-progression strategies.
Apart from fixed-wagering betting, a comparison between the probabilities suggests gamblers prefer negative-progression betting rather than positive-progression betting. We now turn to the following question: When a player is allowed to choose the odds themselves in a near-fair game, how would they balance the risk and potential return?
In our analysis, we can examine such behaviors based on the gambling logs from Crash and Satoshi Dice games. COM provides the player-selected odds even when players lose that round, whereas for the Satoshi Dice game only Coinroll accepts player-selected odds.
We will therefore focus on the data collected on these two websites. COM, the odds can only be set as multiples of 0. To simplify our modeling work, we will convert the odds on Coinroll to be multiples of 0. It turns out that in both cases the odds can be modeled with a truncated shifted power-law distribution,.
Note that there is a jump at m max , meaning that the players are more likely to place bets on the maximum allowed odds than on a slightly smaller odds. It also means that when gamblers are free to determine the risks of their games, although in most times they will stick to low risks, showing a risk-aversion attitude, they still present a non-negligible probability of accepting high risks in exchange for high potential returns.
The scaling properties of risk attitude might not be unique to gamblers, but also may help to explain some of the risk-seeking behaviors in stock markets or financial trading. We now re-examine the distributions from the point of view of estimating the crash point m C Satoshi Dice games can be explained with the same mechanism. The true distribution of m C generated by the websites follow a power-law decay with an exponent of 2 with some small deviation due to the house edge.
Meanwhile, a closer look at the fitted exponents listed above gives us two empirical exponents of 1. The smaller exponents reveal that gamblers believe that they have a larger chance to win a high-odds game than they actually do. Or equivalently, it means the gamblers over-weight the winning chance of low-probability games. As a result, they under-weight the winning chances of mild-probability games. These are clear empirical evidence of probability weighting among gamblers, which is believed to be one of the fundamental mechanisms in economics 6.
In the previous study of skin gambling 8 , we pointed out that the wealth distribution of skin gamblers shows a pairwise power-law tail. The crossover happens at 1. As both wealth distributions of skin gambling and bitcoin gambling can be approximated by a pairwise power distribution, we believe that it is a good option for modeling the tails of gambler wealth distribution in different scenarios.
The tail of the wealth distribution of Bitcoin gamblers follows a pairwise power-law distribution. In the above sections, we have analyzed the distributions of several quantities at the population level. However, there is a huge inequality of the number of placed bets among gamblers. We therefore wonder whether those distributions we obtain result from the inequality of number of bets among individuals. To remove the effects of this inequality, we randomly sample in each dataset the same number of bets from heavy gamblers.
We re-analyze the wager distribution and odds distribution with the sample data to see if we obtain the same distribution as before. Some datasets are excluded here as either they do not have enough data or we cannot identify individual gamblers. When re-analyzing the odds distribution, to ensure we have enough data, we respectively sample and bets from each of those gamblers in games C and F who have at least and valid player-selected odds above m min.
According to the results in Fig. Similarly, the odds distributions again follow truncated shifted power-law distributions after removing the inequality. These results demonstrate that the shape of the distributions we obtained in the above sections is not a result of the inequality of the number of bets.
Now our question becomes whether the conclusion regarding the distribution at the population level can be extended to the individual level. Here due to the limitation of data, we will only discuss the wager distribution.
Analyzing the individual distribution of top gamblers, we find that although heavy-tailed properties can be widely observed at the individual level, only a small proportion of top gamblers presents log-normal distributed wagers. Other distributions encountered include log-normal distributions, power-law distributions, power-law distributions with exponential cutoff, pair-wise power-law distributions, irregular heavy-tailed distributions, as well as distributions that only have a few values.
The diversity of the wager distributions at the individual level suggests a diversity of individual betting strategies. Also, it indicates that a gambler may not stick to only one betting strategy. It follows that the log-normal wager distribution observed at the population level is very likely an aggregate result.
In all the games we analyze, there are only two possible outcomes: a win or a loss. The time t will increase by 1 when the player places a new bet, therefore the process is a discrete-time random walk. In Fig. At the same time, in some datasets such as Ethcrash D and Coinroll F , large fluctuations can be observed. Change of the mean net income with time for the different datasets. Most of the datasets present a decreasing net income as time t increases.
Each point is obtained from an average over at least players. An useful tool for studying the diffusive process is the ensemble-averaged mean-squared displacement MSD , defined as. More specifically, when the MSD growth is faster respectively, slower than linear, superdiffusion respectively, subdiffusion is observed.
To reduce the coarseness, MSD curves are smoothed with log-binning technique. The error bars in Fig. It is interesting to see that for different datasets we observe different diffusive behaviors. For games csgofast-Crash C we observe that the MSD grows faster than a linear function, suggesting superdiffusive behavior. Meanwhile, for games csgofast-Double A , ethCrash D , csgospeed G , and csgofast-Jackpot H , the MSD first presents a superdiffusive regime, followed by a crossover to a normal diffusive regime.
Convex-shaped regimes can also be observed in csgofast-Crash games C. The growth of ensemble-averaged mean-squared displacement in different datasets presents different diffusive behaviors. In ref. Similar crossovers are observed in games G and H , two parimutuel betting games, where the same explanation can be applied.
On the other hand, this crossover is also found in a Roulette game and in a Crash game, where there is no interaction among gamblers. A different explanation needs to be proposed to model this crossover. In the following we briefly discuss how we can obtain from gambling models the different diffusive processes observed in the data.
We will not attempt to reproduce the parameters we obtained from the gambling logs, but rather try to explore the possible reasons for the anomalous diffusion we reported. But normal diffusion is only found in few datasets, the remaining datasets presenting anomalous diffusion which conflicts with the IID assumption.
Having shown the popularity of betting systems among gamblers, we would like to check how different betting systems affect diffusive behaviors. First, we simulate gamblers that follow Martingale strategies in a Crash game. Once the wager reaches a preset maximum bet value , we reset the gambler with a minimum bet.
MSD obtained from 10 billion individual simulations is shown in Fig. Different curves correspond to different exponents in odds distribution. We can see that the MSD initially presents an exponential-like growth, before the growths reduce to a linear function.
Considering the wide adoption of Martingale among gamblers, this could be a reason for the superdiffusion as well as the crossover to normal diffusion we found in several datasets. A betting system similar to Martingale will lead to a crossover from superdiffusion to normal diffusion according to the growth of mean-squared displacement. Next we examine the ergodicity of the random walk process of net income by computing the time-averaged mean-squared displacement and the ergodicity breaking parameter.
The time-averaged MSD is defined as. As shown in Fig. To further examine breaking of ergodicity, we have calculated the ergodicity breaking parameter EB 24 — 26 defined as. The growth of the time-averaged MSD for individual gamblers, presented as thin lines, suggests diverse betting behaviors at the individual level. Players who played less than rounds are filtered out in each dataset. For an ergodic process, the parameter EB should be close to 0.
However, as shown in Fig. It follows that non-ergodicity is observed in most games and that gambling processes indeed often deviate from normal diffusion, which further highlights the complexity of human gambling behavior. The change of the ergodicity breaking parameter with time.
For all games, with the exception of the games csgospeed G and csgofast-Jackpot H , EB is found to be much larger than 0, suggesting non-ergodic behavior. Another way to examine the diffusive behavior of a process is through the analysis of the first-passage time distribution. We note that the results obtained from ensemble-averaged MSD sometimes differ from the results obtained from the first-passage time distributions.
Nonetheless, anomalous diffusive behavior is widely observed. The tails of first-passage time distributions for the different datasets indicate different diffusive behaviors. Only gamblers who attended more than rounds of games have been included in these calculations.
To confirm our conclusion about the wide existence of anomalous diffusive behavior in gambling activities, we further calculate the non-Gaussian parameter NGP 26 , 28 , For a Gaussian process, the NGP should approach 0 when t gets large. In the game Coinroll F , a decrease is not apparent, and most likely this game does not follow a Gaussian process.
In the other games, although the NGP is still decreasing, we can not discriminate whether for large t this quantity will tend to 0 or instead reach a plateau value larger than zero. Still, our analysis does not provide clear evidence for the presence of Gaussianity in gambling behaviors. In most datasets, except Coinroll F , the non-Gaussian parameter shows a decreasing trend as t increases.
However, in none of the studied cases does the non-Gaussian parameter fall below the value 1. Further studies are required in order to fully understand the observed differences. At the individual level, as has been pointed out by Meng 7 , gamblers show a huge diversity of betting strategies, and even individual gamblers constantly change their betting strategy. Differences in the fractions of gamblers playing specific betting strategies could be a reason why we see a variety of diffusive behaviors in the datasets.
The quick development of the video gaming industry has also resulted in an explosive growth of other online entertainment. This is especially true for online gambling that has evolved quickly into a booming industry with multi-billion levels. Every day million of bets are placed on websites all around the globe as many different gambling games are available online for gamblers.
Analysing different types of gambling games ranging from Roulette to Jackpot games , we have shown that log-normal distributions can be widely used to describe the wager distributions of online gamblers at the aggregate level. Thank you for opportunity to speak with you this morning. If there are any questions, I would be pleased to try to answer them. The Deputy Chair: We will turn to questions after we hear from Mr. Thank you, Mr. For the benefit of our television audience, before turning to Mr.
Weber there is an element of the parliamentary process I would like to clarify. Lipton, you made it eloquently clear that you are opposed to the amendment that has been proposed by Woodbine, which is your absolute right. However, in terms of parliamentary process, an amendment in committee is not eleventh hour work.
It is in committee that parliaments study legislation. It happens in the House of Commons and also in the Senate. This committee is engaged in the study of the bill and it is in committee that amendments are normally proposed.
I am not saying this committee will or will not adopt an amendment to this particular bill, but amendments are not at all unusual, particularly in the case of private member's bills, which this is. I know you understand that, but just in case people watching are starting to get confused about how parliaments go about their sometimes complex business, I thought I would put that on the record.
Kevin J. Lipton has spoken of the benefits that the public would earn if Bill C was enacted in its present form. I want to begin by providing some detail on one item he mentioned briefly, namely, detecting and combatting match-fixing.
I will then move on to some comments relating to the proposed amendment put forward by Woodbine, specifically in relation to the interprovincial agreement that governs in this area between the provinces and the federal government. For that purpose, along with my speaking notes, I have asked that a copy of the agreement be distributed to all members. I believe that one of the benefits that one was intended to receive back in — when this current restriction that is in the Criminal Code against single event sports betting was first enacted — was meant to entirely to combat match-fixing.
That was the purpose of the restriction. I have had that confirmed to my satisfaction by people who were involved in the drafting back then. The idea was to make it so that a criminal would need to fix multiple events in order to profit by a bet and that would make the activity too difficult to successfully carry out. I would say this was a sensible precaution in In , a person physically present in Canada had to place their bet in Canada and would therefore be subjected to the single event betting restriction unless they went to a street bookie or a bookie operating by telephone.
Other than those illegal measures, the only other way to place a single sport bet would be to leave the country and go to Las Vegas or some other jurisdiction where single sports betting was allowed. However, that sensible restriction ceased to be sensible not many years later.
With the advent of online betting, the single event betting restriction in the Criminal Code now poses absolutely no obstacle to anyone inclined to take part in match-fixing. Gamblers who are inclined to illegally influence the outcome of a sporting event taking place in Canada will simply place bets on an offshore website.
They will not have to leave Canada. They can do whatever they want. I know you have heard from other witnesses who have said that match-fixing is not, demonstrably, a large problem in Canada as it stands, and I have no evidence that it is a problem at all. That said, it was still the evil that Parliament intended to combat when it first put in the restriction, so it is very relevant.
The fact is that with online gambling the smallest events are now being taken as betting fodder throughout the world, including small events where the participants are not making a great deal of money and have to hold down second jobs. While it may not be a problem, when you have athletes who are not being well paid, it does open up the possibility for match-fixing to occur. We have to do something to restrict it, and, clearly, the current restriction against single-sport betting will not accomplish that.
In a world in which Internet betting bans are not enforceable, what is the best tool for combating match-fixing? The tool is information. Provincial governments can institute measures whereby betting patterns are monitored for the kind of unusual activity that indicates that bets have been placed based on inside information. This information can be shared with other jurisdictions that monitor sports betting activity.
The major U. This is a very common way of combatting this evil throughout the world, particularly in many other jurisdictions where it is more of a demonstrable problem than in Canada. The primary limitation on the process is that only bets placed in regulated jurisdictions can be tracked in this fashion. Obviously, if you have a jurisdiction where all such bets are underground, no tracking is possible.
By providing regulated betting on single event sports, the provinces can bring a large percentage of Canadian bets currently placed in a way that cannot be tracked into a system regulated and monitored by the governments. I am thinking of bets that are placed with bookies, bets placed on the telephone and bets placed online in less regulated jurisdictions.
Obviously, if Canadians place bets in places that are regulated, then those can be tracked, but Canadians may not necessarily choose where they bet on the basis of where the best regulation is. As my partner pointed out, they may simply look for best odds. Canada can be part of the solution if we bring a certain percentage of the bets into the country.
Without the amendment, Canada will continue to push its sports betting public toward other options that may not be able to be tracked. The Deputy Chair: Mr. Weber, sorry to interrupt; I hate to do that. However, we will be a little tight for time, so when you discuss the amendment, if you have arguments that are different from those brought up by Mr.
Lipton, we would love to hear them. If you are just going to hammer home the same points for the sake of reinforcing something you strongly believe, perhaps we could take that from the written brief and go to questions. Weber: I would like to skip quickly, then, to the agreement, if that has been sent to everyone, and go ahead to what I consider to be the most salient points of that agreement as they relate to the amendment. Section 1. Section 2.
Section 4 provides that if any dispute arises with respect to the Government of Canada's fulfillment of its undertakings under section 1, namely reducing or restricting the rights of provinces in the field of gaming and betting, the provinces are entitled to withhold their annual payments and to exercise all recourse they may have with respect to such a dispute. Section 7 of the agreement makes it clear that it is anticipated that litigation could be a recourse as it states that the parties agree that the agreement is a commercial matter and that the governments undertook not to invoke Crown prerogative or immunity in any dispute, including court proceedings arising from the agreement.
Finally, section 8 provides that the agreement can only be terminated or amended with the unanimous consent of the provinces and the Government of Canada. Now, we do not know how the provincial governments view the proposed amendment to Bill C They have not, to our knowledge, given their opinion. They have not, to our knowledge, been consulted. Given the issues raised by my colleague, Mr. Lipton, it is at least possible that some of them could view the proposed amendment as reducing or restricting their rights in the field of gaming and betting given the uncertainty over which entity will conduct and manage the betting.
That would be a breach of section 1. The provinces could respond in the political field. It could simply be a matter of damage to federal-provincial relations generally, or they could escalate it to responding by withholding their annual payments to the federal government. Most extremely, they could respond by bringing action in court.
Since , it has been the practice of the Government of Canada to seek provincial consent before it amended any provision of the code that related to lawful gaming and betting. Whether that is a matter of precedent or whether it is actually related to ensuring that no disputes arise with relation to the agreement, I am not certain.
However, I think that it is important to recall once again that, as my colleague pointed out, Bill C did not arrive here before it had received approval from all the provincial governments. We do not know how unilateral change would play out in terms of federal-provincial relations.
Given that the benefits that stand to be gained in the protection of the public by enacting Bill C, I submit that the committee should approve it expeditiously. I do not think, necessarily, that the amendment put forth by Woodbine will be consigned to oblivion by that process. I believe that the proper method in which they can bring forward this amendment is the same method that Mr.
Comartin used. They can bring forward a private member's bill. I am sure there are many members of Parliament whose ridings include horse racing interests who would be pleased to do so. They can bring it forward and then attempt to get the approval of the provincial governments, including whatever changes might be necessary to get that approval.
With that, we can ensure that there will be absolutely no difficulties either in the interpretation of the section or in terms of federal-provincial disputes. The Deputy Chair: Thank you very much, and thank you for doing a super job of abridging there. I think you covered all of the points that were in your written brief. We are very grateful. Senator Runciman: I find intriguing the amount of time that you devoted to horse racing, not only in the proposed amendment but also in the lack of qualifications for folks running tracks to operate sports books.
I am sponsoring this bill and voting for it, but I have to tell you that if there is one thing that gives me pause, it is the OLG's devastating policies on the horse racing industry in Ontario. They have done really serious damage to rural, small- town Ontario, with possibly 30, jobs being lost. I cannot tell you how I can get really worked up about what they are doing here with their short-sighted cash grab.
In any event, Mr. Lipton, you are suggesting that they are not qualified to be in this business. That is aside from the merits or lack thereof of the proposed amendment. I have a couple of questions about New Jersey and their plan to implement single event betting. Their approach is to put it into casinos and racetracks.
Lipton: For clarity, they have not had any experience until now in dealing with that particular form of betting. I thought I also indicated that it is certainly a competence that could be gained through studying, training and what have you.
From my particular perspective, I think the operation carried on by Woodbine is superb. There is no question about it; it is a world leader in what it does, and it might certainly be able to get into this particular field. However, I wanted to try and cast more light on some of the information that was provided earlier to this committee about the idea that, because there is single event horse race betting, it is not a bit of a leap to getting into single event sports betting.
I think there is; I think there is a significant leap. That is not to say you cannot become aware of it. I wanted to bring that fact forward to you and to the members of the committee. Senator Runciman: With all due respect, I thought your emphasis was on lack of qualifications rather than their ability to learn the business. I would like to move on with respect to New Jersey and Delaware, where all the major professional sporting organizations and the NCAA are launching lawsuits with respect to the implementation of single event sports betting.
I would like to hear your views with respect to the positions taken by the professional leagues. Is there any possibility from a legal standpoint that we could see similar actions being taken against provinces that move in this direction in the future? Lipton: On the first part of your question, in relation to the position taken by the leagues concerning the action taken by New Jersey, let us back up for a moment.
New Jersey determined it wants to proceed to get involved in single event sports betting. As you have indicated, they want to do that at casinos and race tracks. Governor Christie has come out in favour of this particular form of legislation. Senator Bradley, who was a senator from New York and also a very famous basketball player who played for the New York Knicks. At the time that particular piece of legislation was enacted — which I think was in the early s — Congress did permit the states to have a —.
Senator Runciman: May I interrupt? I have asked some specific questions. I do not want to be rude, but we do have time limitations. I would prefer if you would discuss the issues that I raised with you rather than getting into the history, which some of us are familiar.
Lipton: The legislation in New Jersey is being tested in the courts on the basis of whether this is an interference with the rights of each state to be treated equally. The sports leagues are taking the position that allowing this type of betting may impact the integrity of their particular sport. I think that under the circumstances they have their particular views, but at the same time I think that the NFL the other sports leagues work closely with the regulators in Nevada and the like in relation to trying to determine the statistics of how much betting goes on in that particular field.
Therefore, the sports leagues use the sports betting information to determine if there are problems in relation to the types of bets and if there is a possibility of match- fixing and the fact that it will impact the integrity of the sports industry. We have in the United States close to million — maybe more — of underground sports betting going on, yet the NFL and Major League Baseball and the like seem to be able to weather the storm in relation to any attack on integrity.
The last time that occurred was Therefore, the position taken by the sports leagues in regard to the impact of single event sporting betting is no longer justified in my respectful submission. Some of the sports leagues may ask for that. I cannot read their minds in that particular regard. Nevertheless these sports leagues go to Las Vegas to hold major-league events. They also go to London, England, to hold football games and there is lots of betting going on there.
Therefore, I do not think there will be an impact from this on sports leagues from the perspective of it attacking integrity. I think it will do exactly the opposite. Senator Runciman: This question is for Mr. What type of implementation do you see as being necessary to have the maximum impact on organized crime? Weber: We have to divide up what we call "organized crime. I am not considering anything that occurs offshore because that does not qualify as organized crime, for the most part, because many of the places where one goes to bet online outside of this country are in highly-regulated areas.
Frankly, the provincial lottery corporations across Canada will be working to get themselves up to that level when they institute single sport betting. In Canada, I can tell you of the experience of other jurisdictions — I am thinking of Australia, and I believe the committee heard something about it before.
Very shortly after it becomes widely available to people, first of all, and you educate them as to the advantages of placing their bets legally, then there is pretty much nothing at that point in the way of providing better odds that the organized criminals can do to prevent their business from practically being wiped out. There is a danger on many levels that comes with betting with organized crime. Organized crime will loan you money when you are in trouble.
Therefore, now you have a combination of loan sharking involved with the operation, so there is a threat there. Some provinces ban the extension of credit in betting and gaming altogether by comparison. There is a physical danger involved when one does not bet by telephone but by going to the place where bets are taken; these are not secure places.
There is also a simple matter of getting paid. The government will pay you. You know that. That is also an advantage you have over online sites. If you are picking an online site and not being careful about whether where it is regulated, you do not know whether you will be paid.
The advantages they have over organized crime are huge. I think it would severely dent their business, first, by being implemented and, second, by educating the public as to the advantages that come with betting legally. Senator Baker: First, I want to thank the witnesses for appearing here today. I simply want to make the point that I think it is unfortunate that we do not have the Department of Justice Canada appearing at one of these committee meetings to give us their interpretation of the change in the Criminal Code that we are now considering.
I do not question the expertise of the witnesses here because both of them are on what is called Chambers Global and they are identified by other lawyers as being on the list of the best lawyers in Canada. However, I always thought their expertise was in the area of chartered accountants and managing; I thought that was where their case law is.
Regardless, I understand the legal points that you are making. I do not agree with your conclusion, however, on those legal points. I am hesitant about this bill because it eradicates all of paragraph 4 b of the Criminal Code. There is no case law on paragraph 4 b of the Criminal Code, or of paragraph 4 a. There is a paragraph 4 c , which you have referenced. My problem with that is the conjunction "or" in what we are removing. In looking at case law dealing with the value of the conjunction "or," the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled many times that the use of the word "or" in this context separates distinct things in and of themselves.
All of your testimony has been about removing the section that says "on a single sport event. Lipton: I will start off. My partner Kevin Weber and I have been working together for over 15 years. Whatever I may not cover, he will certainly focus on. I have been practising law for over 40 years. I have had the opportunity to work in this particular area for the last 20 or so years.
It never ceases to amaze me that there are always different perspectives and issues arising. What is so wonderful about the practice of law is being able to look at different issues and from various perspectives. From a general point of view, you may have a point respecting the interpretation of what the Supreme Court said concerning the word "or" as opposed to the word "and," deleting the first two or three occurrences of "or" so that it reads "fight, single game sports bet, or athletic contest.
Clearly, going forward 27 years, we are in a position where technology is available for us to be able to discern quickly through the computer whether there is a risk of that type of occurrence — match-fixing. The underlying rationale of the legislation no longer applies, in my respectful submission, because of the technology, which is good.
Therefore, whether it is a fight, race, single sports event, or an athletic contest, it is my view that the elimination of this particular section does not create danger in respect of possible match-fixing. It will permit the unregulated type of betting, whether on a race, fight, single sports event, or athletic contest, to be regulated.
It will bring it from underground to above ground and make it regulated to the benefit of the public. Senator Baker: Going back to , I was here then. I tangled with the minister who introduced this restriction, the Honourable John Crosbie, then Minister of Justice, and it was put in. I recognize what Mr. Weber read previously — that there must be unanimous consent with the provinces before any change is made in the Criminal Code as it relates to these matters. All the evidence we have heard so far is that five provinces have agreed with this but we have heard nothing regarding the remaining five provinces.
Lipton, I would like you to verify. I imagine that any committee that has been working on this would probably have you on it if it were changing this section of the code. Will you verify for the committee that you have been sitting as a part of a working group with some deputy ministers of the provinces regarding this, chaired by a person of great respect in the Department of Justice; that you did consider that this has been gone over by the provinces at those meetings; and that no definitive answer was given, but the alarm bells were signalled at those meetings that there must be measures to "alleviate the threat of match-fixing.
Lipton: I appreciate the opportunity, senator. Certainly, I was not on any particular committee at that particular time. I have read extensively what was available. Certainly, coming forward today, I have been informed by the Member of Parliament for Windsor West that, based on what he testified to on October 4, all provincial governments have approved Bill C as it stands.
The Deputy Chair: We have copies of some letters, but I do not know whether they are from every province. Senator Baker: That is why, Madam Chair, it would be worthwhile to have the chair of the working group of deputy ministers from the Department of Justice appear before the committee to tell us what the reactions of the provinces are to this bill. So far, they have been reluctant to appear, but we continue to press.
Senator White: I continue to hear about the billions of dollars going offshore to gambling. I also heard last week from a witness from Australia who talked about having no offshore gambling problem. What amount goes offshore in relation to single sports betting? Lipton: Unfortunately, those figures are not published, largely because such bets are going offshore to jurisdictions that may not be regulated or to jurisdictions that may be regulated but that particular information has not been sought or, if it has, is not available.
Lipton: It is through reading various documentations and the like. I read material constantly in respect to this particular area. Senator White: You mentioned the United States, so I would like to ask why you are not here suggesting that we put in place an enforcement act such as the U. Why is that not the suggestion, rather than our legalizing something because money is leaving the country that would allow us to attack this from the end that I would argue, which might be the better end?
The amount of money seized in relation to the announcements of the Department of Justice in the United States is a pittance compared to what is anecdotally going through system. When one person or one company is stopped, others come in and get involved.
The bottom line is that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, from the perspective of the banks seeking to block these transactions, does not seem to work successfully. I think there is talk in the U. Nevada has taken legislation to permit that and is starting to regulate it. A number of other states in the United States are looking to regulate online poker as well. Granted, theses are poker-type sites, not single event sports betting. The only states interested in doing that are New Jersey, Delaware, Nevada and the like.
I can go on for some detail in relation to some issues, but the bottom line is that, in my respectful submission, the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act is not working. We do not have copies of such correspondence from Newfoundland and Labrador.
We have not directly received briefs from any province. Senator Baker: I simply raise the point because as per the agreement that was arrived at, which Mr. Weber outlined to us, it is necessary to have unanimous consent from the provinces. The Deputy Chair: Thank you very much, gentlemen. You have been very helpful and we are grateful. Our second panel of witnesses this morning includes the Honourable Michael Chong, P. It is not often we have an M. The Hon. Michael Chong, P.
I appreciate the opportunity to appear in front of this committee to register my opposition to Bill C, as elected members of Parliament were not given the opportunity to formally vote on this important piece of leigislation. Various forms of gambling have long been restricted by the Criminal Code.
Since , the Criminal Code has undergone several amendments that have expanded legal gambling in Canada. However, the evidence shows that government gambling revenues come with high social costs. The risks outweigh the benefits. The adverse social costs of gambling are borne by children, lower income families and people with compulsive personalities. Problem gambling has become a serious mental health issue and a growing public concern.
For example, gambling-related suicides are on the rise in Canada. In , Quebec's coroner's office linked 27 suicides to problem gambling. In , that annual number rose to In Ontario, the chief coroner reported that gambling-related suicides more than tripled between and Since many provinces do not formally report gambling-related suicides, these figures could be much higher.
The Canada Safety Council estimates over Canadians a year commit suicide due to gambling-related problems. Gambling is an inefficient way to raise government revenues. For every dollar in revenue, governments must spend 50 cents to collect it. It is far more efficient to raise government revenues through traditional means rather than inefficient sources like gambling. Gambling does not create good employment.
Statistics Canada indicates that compared to jobs in the non-gambling sector, jobs in the gambling industry are more likely to require a high school education or less, to be paid by the hour and to be paid less.
Some argue that gambling is provincial jurisdiction, but this fails to acknowledge federal jurisdiction over the Criminal Code. The courts have consistently ruled that the federal Criminal Code power is wide and broad as outlined in the Margarine Reference case of Public peace, order security, health, morality, these are the ordinary, though not exclusive, ends served by that law.
Clearly, gambling falls under the federal Criminal Code. That is why the current Criminal Code contains 20 pages of prohibition on various forms of gambling in Canada. No one is suggesting that we strike all 20 pages from the Criminal Code.
Bill C will also negatively impact professional and amateur sports in Canada. Both professional and amateur sports leagues in North America have voiced serious concerns about the impact of single sport betting on their games and, consequently, may cancel exhibition games or decide not to establish new franchises in Canada. The four major professional sports leagues in the United States have filed numerous lawsuits in U. Federal Court to prevent the introduction of single-event sports betting outside of the four existing states that were grandfathered by U.
Clearly, this bill will have a negative impact on professional and amateur sports in Canada. Although various forms of gambling have been legal in Canada for decades and although this will undoubtedly continue as governments have become hooked on these revenues, we should not add to the adverse impact by expanding this activity.
I urge you, honourable senators, to consider the negative consequences of adopting Bill C Chair and senators, on behalf of the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to present to you our considerations with regard to Bill C The clerk has copies of my presentation, and the two papers on which it is based have already been translated and distributed. The Institute of Marriage and Family Canada argues against the passage of Bill C for two reasons: First, gambling is profoundly damaging to the families and communities of problem gamblers.
Government bears much or some of the cost of cleaning up the resulting messes. Second, provincial governments take almost a quarter of their profits from gambling addicts. Government is abusing its power when it relies on addicts to generate revenue. Gambling is a problem when it gets in the way of work, school, or other activities, harms your mental or physical health, hurts you financially, damages your reputation and causes problems with your family or friend.
We know that, in the families of gambling addicts — problem gamblers — there are far too many innocent victims. A study of children of problem gamblers by Philip Darbyshire of the University of the South Australia heard three siblings describe an episode "when their mother was trying leave to gamble as one of her younger children struggled to wrest the suitcase from her grasp to make her stay.
A study published in the Journal of Gambling Studies found that violence between spouses was significantly higher in their sample of problem gamblers than in the general population. A study in Norway found that families of problem gamblers experienced family conflict at a rate more than 50 times higher than the general population. In a Alberta study, Dr. Robert William of the University of Lethbridge found that roughly 6 per cent of gamblers account for 75 per cent of all the money spent on gambling in that province.
A study found that an estimated 3. This is comparable to the number of Canadians 25 and older who are frequent heavy drinkers. More importantly, we know that problem gamblers deeply affect those around them. An Australian study estimated that one problem gambler can affect five to ten people. This would translate to roughly between 4 and 8 million Canadians. Provincial governments are themselves addicted to gambling revenues.
We know that B. Ontario's Finance Minister, Dwight Duncan, stated publicly that this move is "about the competitiveness of OLG going forward and ensuring that it continues to be a reliable source of revenue for the province. We are also witnessing an enormous conflict of interest here.
Governments claim to be concerned about gambling addiction and even spend some money to address it, but no government will make a serious effort to help problem gamblers quit when their profits depend on those same gamblers. Remember that in Alberta, 6 per cent of gamblers account for 75 per cent of all the money spent on gambling. Bill C further expands gambling. In fact, by expanding it to individual sporting events, it expands it greatly across the country.
It is, frankly, giving families of gambling addicts another reason to fear that things are only going to get worse. In closing, the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada cannot support Bill C because problem gamblers and their families will suffer more as gambling expands.
Our governments pay to deal with the resulting problems. Add to that the fact that provincial governments, addicted to these very revenues, cannot be trusted with this expansion. Senator Runciman: Mr. Chong, you mentioned that gambling-related suicides are on the rise.
I was looking at the Ontario statistics. Take — there were eight deaths where there was gambling involved. In there were five. In there were six, and in there were four. How do you arrive at the conclusion that they are rapidly on the rise? Chong: That came from a report that the Ontario coroner did in It was an analysis of the period between and That is where that statistic came from. Senator Runciman: I do not have the complete report, but I do have the chart from that report, which certainly does not indicate a rapid rise in deaths related to gambling involvement.
We had witnesses yesterday, and their view was that the defeat of this bill is not going to have the impact that you have indicated you would like to see it have. They felt, on the other side of the coin, that passage of this legislation will not have any impact in terms of encouraging new folks who are not already engaging in that activity through the Internet and other channels to get involved in single-event sports betting.
You have taken a different view on this. I wondered how you arrive at the conclusion that simply putting it into a regulated and transparent environment will encourage more people to get involved. What do you base that conclusion on? Chong: I would say two things in response to that point of view. The first is that when there are violations of the law because of offshore activity, I think the law should be enforced rather than that those aspects of the law should be decriminalized.
I think that that is the approach that the Parliament of Canada has taken on a wide variety of issues as they relate to prostitution or to the issue of marijuana. Many people have advocated decriminalizing those activities as a way to deal with the fact that they take place. However, as a Conservative, many people argue that we should force the law and put more resources into law enforcement.
The second point I would make is that the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation, OLG, itself has said that if single event sport betting is permitted in Canada, it will lead to an increase in revenues. Senator Runciman: I think most of that was projected to come from the United States, if you look at that report. You mentioned prostitution and drugs, and I think there is a clear distinction here that gambling is legal and widely available through legal means.
I am having difficulty with the positions that both of you are taking. I understand your concerns about gaming. We heard similar concerns about that yesterday in terms of proximity; some of the new facilities in Ontario and so-called modernization, which is a cash-grab, essentially.
However, in terms of this legislation having an impact with respect to increased numbers of people engaging in single event sports, I have yet to hear a persuasive argument that makes that case. I am afraid I am not hearing one from you today. Senator Baker: First, I would like to congratulate both witnesses for their very excellent presentations, and Mr.
Chong for his presentation here today. Chong, people watching this proceeding and listening to you would be struck by your first sentence. In elementary school we learn that we elect members of Parliament to go to the House of Commons to vote on the laws that we pass. They have a chance to vote at second reading, at report stage from committee, and then at third reading.
However, I will just read back for you what you said and then ask you if you could explain in some detail why this is so. Here is what you said:. I appreciate the opportunity to appear before this [Senate] committee to register my opposition to Bill C As elected members of Parliament, we are not given the opportunity to formally vote on this important piece of legislation.
Could you explain to us how that is possible? You are an elected member. Here is a major change to the Criminal Code of Canada, and you said that you — any elected members of Parliament — were not given an opportunity to formally vote on this important piece of legislation. Chong: Thank you for the question. The honourable senator will know, having himself been a long-time member of the House of Commons, that from time to time bills are passed through the House of Commons on unanimous consent at all stages.
That is what happened in this case. That does happen from time to time, as he will know and I am sure as he observed when he sat in the lower chamber. Senator Baker: Yes, I was there for 29 years. Was this one of these bills where a motion was made and it was deemed to have been accepted, or did it happen on a Friday morning or at a time when there were very few people in the House to get it through?
Was that what happened here? Chong: If you look at the transcripts of Hansard, the bill was adopted at all stages. It was at report stage on Friday, March 2. I assume that was either an agreement of the House leaders or as a result of debate collapsing. Senator Baker: Debate collapsing. In other words, it was one of these instances. Therefore you did not have an opportunity as a member of Parliament to vote on this legislation; is that what you are saying?
Chong: No, I did not, and that is why I very much appreciate the opportunity to express my views here and to go on the record. Senator Baker: You can be assured that every senator will be given an opportunity to vote on this legislation. Thank you very much. The Deputy Chair: This is a process that we do not have in the Senate and it always fascinates us to learn about it.
Senator Boisvenu: My first question goes to Mr. As I read your brief—and I am trying to look at the big picture—what I gather is that your organization has an overall approach, not related to any sector. You are opposed to any kind of betting or any kind of game where people's health and stability are at risk.
Yours is a blanket approach, is it not? It is not just about this bill, is it? Miedema: I think the position that we have adopted and which you will find in the paper Government — gambling's biggest addict is that there is an inherent conflict of interest; more important than gambling being legal, there is an inherent conflict of interest. Where you have a profit motive competing with care for addicted gamblers, profit wins and addicted gamblers lose.
Miedema: I would not say it is exactly like that. I think in this case I found it interesting that we have very clearly stated by previous witnesses that, if this bill passes, the government will be taking over from bookies. It also puts the government then in the position of being bookies. However, in this particular issue, it is an inherent conflict of interest and problem gamblers and their families will always lose because profit will always win.
It is not an issue of gambling being legal; it is an issue of this conflict of interest, and that needs to be remedied. Senator Boisvenu: It is much the same for cigarettes: government advertising says that the product is more or less dangerous, but there is the government, pocketing billions of dollars in taxes.
It is quite the contradiction. Chong, yesterday, some very interesting witnesses came to talk to us about the effects of gambling and how problem gamblers are created. Contrary to what you both claim, they are seeing a decrease. They were people who work with problem gamblers and they came here to tell us that they are seeing a decline in the number of people displaying pathological behaviour in terms of gambling.
We are faced with a number of solutions to complex problems. We have illegal gambling that results in a very significant amount of money being channelled out of the country. The witnesses told us that it is easier to track down problem gamblers when the activity is legal, not illegal. So I asked them to put themselves in the shoes of senators with a decision to make. Would they maintain the status quo of the activity, knowing that money is leaving the country, that organized crime is making a profit, that it is hard to identify problem gamblers because the activity goes on underground?
Or would they prefer to legalize the activity, making it much easier to track down people with gambling problems. Those three experts, who work with problem gamblers, all said that it was better to legalize it. So there is a kind of contradiction. Could you explain your position, which seems to be that we are going to heighten the danger, whereas those experts in the treatment of people showing pathological behaviour tell us that it would be better to legalize the activity in order to get a better handle on it?
Chong: Thank you for your question, Senator Boisvenu. I am in favour of the status quo; I am not in favour of getting rid of all the gaming that is presently legal in Canada. But, for illegal games of chance, federal and provincial governments in Canada have to work together and establish resources to combat illegal activities. The solution to offshore gambling is to enforce the law and to ensure that governments work together to do that.
It is no different than offshore tax havens. For many years both the American and Canadian governments ignored the problem of offshore tax havens in places like Switzerland, the Cayman Islands and the like. When the problem became too big to ignore, governments of both countries acted expeditiously and put mechanisms in place to enforce tax collection. In terms of the negative social impact, it is true, as Senator Runciman said, that the chief coroner for Ontario has reported that the number of suicides has declined in the last two to three years, but I would point out two things.
First, the collection of these statistics is not entirely reliable. Many provinces do not collect the statistics at all. Second, in other cases families of those involved are not willing to come forward to admit what happened. The impact is much broader than just suicides, so we should put additional resources in place to help those families and those individuals with compulsive personalities. As Mr. Miedema pointed out, that is taking place but not to the extent that it should.
Senator Boisvenu: That is what leads me to believe that the bill is good for Canada. The experts who work with problem gamblers tell us that the situation is going to get worse; that, if nothing else, it will remain difficult to find out about everything going on underground in terms of illegal gaming and its links to crime. Instead, they tell us that we almost have to legalize it so that we can better understand those underground activities.
How would you respond to that? Chong: I would put to you that if you were to legalize single event sports betting in Canada, these kinds of issues you referred to about the underground activity will not go away. They will remain. Often, the offshore gambling industry provides much better odds than do domestic players, which are run by provincial governments and have certain standards and obligations to uphold.
I am not sure it will deal with that very issue. As well, I am not sure that I agree with the premise that bringing it above ground will solve the problem. Senator Jaffer: In all the research you have done, have you found that immigrant communities, newcomers to our country, are more affected by gambling?
Do you have any research on that or have you seen any findings on it? Chong: I have not seen formal research, but I have heard anecdotally from people like Tung Chan, the head of S. It is one of the largest immigrant organizations in British Columbia.
He has told me that this is a huge problem in the Asian community in the Vancouver Lower Mainland. He and others in the community are quite concerned about the emphasis on increasing revenues through these sources. Senator McIntyre: Mr. Chong, I would like to raise the issue of constitutional jurisdiction with you.
In your letter dated March 15, , addressed to the Senate, you raised the issue of provincial jurisdiction over gambling as opposed to federal jurisdiction over gambling as it relates to the Criminal Code. What forms of gambling, according to you, will be subject to restrictions in the Criminal Code? Chong: So I understand the question, did you ask what forms of gambling should be restricted? Chong: All forms of gambling currently restricted by the Criminal Code should remain as such. Sections to of the Criminal Code restrict certain types of gambling in Canada.
Other forms of gambling are legal in Canada because they are not contained in the Criminal Code. All these sections should remain as they are. Chong: That is right. I am a realist, not a utopian. I understand that gambling revenues form an integral part of overall government revenues in Canada. I also understand that people want to spend their leisure and entertainment dollars at these facilities — that is the reality in Canada today. I am not advocating that we further restrict or roll back the legalization of gambling in Canada.
I am simply suggesting that we not expand gambling in Canada and that the current restrictions in the Criminal Code remain in place for the reasons that I outlined in my opening statement. Senator Frum: My question is along similar lines. We were presented today with the original agreement from between the provinces and the federal government.
As Senator Baker noticed in this agreement, changing it requires the unanimous consent of the provinces. We know that four provinces, including our province of Ontario, are eager to see this legislation pass. Are you aware of any provinces that have expressed a negative opinion about this? Do you think that unanimous consent matters? Chong: I am not aware of any other provinces that have expressed negative opinions about this bill. I would add that the agreements struck in the s should be respected.
If that consent is required, it should go ahead on that basis. I also believe that as a federal government, we should not simply abdicate our responsibility for federal jurisdiction of the Criminal Code. If all 10 provinces were to tell us that they wanted to eliminate sections to in the Criminal Code in one fell swoop, federal parliamentarians should resist that effort, even though there may be agreements in place at the executive level to see that happen.
We have a responsibility as federal parliamentarians to look at the impact that a bill like this would have on Canadians. They have a position against this bill and are very clear about it. With this bill, we would allow betting on the very games they are offering. Can you talk about what you think the potential fallout from that would be? Chong: Yes. We all know that the NFL has expressed interest in a franchise in Toronto. We also know that the NFL has always expressed interest in exhibition games in Canada.
Those would be at risk, I believe, if single event sport betting were allowed in Canada. I would also note that this is not just hypothetical. Two days ago, on October 16, , in the New York Times , the NCAA announced it was pulling six championships from the State of New Jersey for the very reason that the state has recently allowed single event sport betting.
The University of British Columbia has applied in the past. Currently it is not a member, but it has indicated that in the future it may decide to enter into the NCAA. This is not only an issue for professional sports but also for amateur sports in Canada. The four major professional sports leagues in the United States have all cooperated to oppose any expansion or any initiatives as they relate to single event sports betting.
In fact, a case went to the Supreme Court of the United States. In May , the court upheld the plaintiff's case in Markell v. Office of the Commissioner of Baseball. The other major sport league supported the MLB in its efforts and indicated they would side with the four major professional sports leagues and ensure that single event sports betting would not be allowed in the State of Delaware.
Senator Frum: We had this interesting dichotomy between the positions of major league sport and all the testimony we received. It says that betting is going on anyway and that the positions of the sports are irrational or in denial because they are trying to suppress activity that is going on regardless; their position is out of date, anachronistic and futile. What do you say to that? Chong: I agree with the four major professional leagues in the United States when they say allowing for single event sports betting would undermine public confidence in sporting events and the image of professional and collegiate athletes.
We know there have been betting scandals on games — this betting was illegal — and the impact that has on the confidence that fans and spectators have for professional sports. Yesterday we had evidence from health professionals talking about gambling addiction.
I try to weigh the evidence of individuals and organizations as to whether they have a value in the discussion or a success or failure of the discussion. Do you know if the Province of Ontario or the OLG have suggested increased funding to organizations such as that should Bill C be passed? Miedema: I am not aware of that. That is —. Chong: I do not.
There is a sense among the professionals I talk to, social workers and people who deal with problem gambling, that there are not adequate resources to deal with it. The negative social impacts of gambling are often unseen and unheard. I can tell you that members of our caucus have been very directly impacted by these kinds of issues. It is not something that is easy to admit or talk about because there is a shame that comes along with it.
Often, this is a problem that goes unseen and unheard.
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For instance, one of the renowned betting websites priced the candidates to win the U. Presidential Election. Donald Trump: 4. The higher the total payout i. In both cases, you get your initial wager back, in addition to the amount won. The difference between the odds for the favorite and the underdog widens as the probability of winning for the favorite increases.
In this matchup, there is a big difference between the two odds, indicating a much higher probability of Duke winning the game and advancing to the next round of the NCAA Tournament. If you are planning to enter the betting or the gambling world, it is important to be able to understand and interpret all types of odds well.
Trading Psychology. Business Essentials. Wealth Management. Your Money. Personal Finance. Your Practice. Popular Courses. Key Takeaways The three main types of betting odds are fractional British odds, decimal European odds, and American moneyline odds. These are simply different ways of presenting the same thing, and hold no difference in terms of payouts.
Compare Accounts. The offers that appear in this table are from partnerships from which Investopedia receives compensation. Related Articles. Because in order to calculate the RR, one must know the risk. Risk is a probability, a proportion of those exposed with an outcome compared to the total population exposed. This is impossible in a case-control study, in which those who already have the outcome are included without knowing the total population exposed.
RR is a very intuitive concept. It is the probability or risk of one outcome over the probability risk of another. So, the RR is This means survival was reduced by a factor of 0. The RR was 3. This has a very intuitive meaning: risk of failure with SF was three times more likely than HP. Note, this is very close to the RR 0. This is always the case with the OR compared to the RR - it overestimates the effect.
Note, the OR overestimates the RR, which was 3. Although one could say the risk of failure using SF is 3 times greater than HP, one could not say, based on the OR, the risk was 3. The OR and RR are not the same. What could be said is that the odds of failure is 3. Whereas RR can be interpreted in a straightforward way, OR can not. A RR of 3 means the risk of an outcome is increased threefold. Interpretation of an OR must be in terms of odds, not probability.
Again, the OR will always be an overestimate compared to the RR. This is easier to understand with an example. The risk of getting cancer is 4 times greater in Vapalicious users. Note how distorted the OR becomes in this example.
This matters because we often equate the OR and RR. Unwary researchers, reviewers, or news media might report a fold increased risk of cancer from Vapalicious. In fact, there was a 4-fold increased risk of cancer from Vapalicous. Not that I plan to use Vapalicious or any other vape , but a fold vs 4-fold increase is a gross overestimation of the effect.
An OR of 1. Or this could be stated that there is a doubling of the odds of the outcome. Note, this is not the same as saying a doubling of the risk. An OR of 0. Odds Ratio is a measure of the strength of association with an exposure and an outcome. Odds ratios - current best practice and use. When odds ratios can mislead. Life in the Fast Lane ultra-concise summary. The odds ratio by Bland and Altman, of Bland-Altman plot fame.