Sports & Gambling – Where Is Sportsmanship?

It was only a couple of thousand years ago that sports was culminated by the Romans when they had what they called their own version of the Olympic games. The progress of these games saw what we now have as the modern day Olympics.

Since then, many other sports have risen in popularity in modern times with the biggest being football which is followed by almost 2 billion followers around the world. Many of these sports have made millionaires of the players who excel and represent their sports in the international arena.

The most famous being Tiger Woods (#1 ranked golfer in the world) who has been proclaimed as the 1st billionaire sportsman since the beginning of sports.

There is also Michael Jordan (rated by many as the greatest basketball player of all times) who is a few hundred million short of becoming a billionaire himself.

With these players one cannot easily say that they have not performed 100% each time they go out and play. Looking at their performance record it would be more easy to say that they have excelled 90% of the times they have played. Being humans we all have our bad days due to illness, stress, family issues etc. Thus, the few substandard performances.

But there are sports that is so glaringly transparent that gambling has got a hold in their hallowed halls of management. The sport that I am talking about is FOOTBALL.

Take the recent World Cup for example. There were more than 20 incidences where a wrong call or no call by the referee or linesman made a critical difference to the outcome of the match. This would seem insignificant to most viewers except those who had bets on the outcome of the game. And it is the belief that at least 5% of viewers bet on the matches around the world. This would amount to 100 million viewers globally. If the value of each bet was $10 that would make the value of each match a cool $1 billion. There were more than 30 matches throughout the tournament. That’s more than $30 billion at stake. Astounding isn’t it. Just over a period of about 30 days.

You see, the mistakes that were made by the referee or linesmen could have been avoided if FIFA (world governing body for football) had agreed to install the video playback which is currently used by other sports like tennis and badminton. It takes only a few seconds for the playback verification. It also takes out the ‘unfair play’ factor. Joseph Blatter (FIFA chairman) has made a statement on ‘fair play and respect’. What fair play? Millions were lost to syndicates. So why the indifference by FIFA? Could it be that the gambling syndicates have their support even within FIFA???

This means that past history on football could very well have changed if video playback technology was implemented and I would like to recall that most famous incident involving Diego Maradona and his ‘hand of god’ incident against England. He scored with his hand which is in effect a foul. Not a goal.

Let’s take a look at one example, a top team playing with a team ranked in the 70s. The odds of the top team going through would probably be 3 or less to 1. That means whoever betted on the top team stands to win $30 or less if they had betted $10. If 10 million viewers did the same thing then the stake of the match would be about $300 million. It is very easy to BUY someone for let’s say $1 million when the stake is $300 million wouldn’t you agree? It is very hard as a human to ignore this kind of temptation when you earn about $100 to $200 per game (as in the case of the linesmen and referees and to not make a call at a critical stage during the match).

Let’s take a look at the same example but with a different betting stake. Most bets are on a variable stake. That means that the bet is broken down into several stakes. Take team A (top team) and team X (ranked 70s). The bet would look something like this:

Team A beat Team X = Odds are 3 to 1

Team A beat Team X by 1 goal = Odds are 3 to 1

Team A beat Team X by 2 goals = Odds are 5 to 1

Team A draws with Team X (90 minutes) = Odds are 10 to 1

So if there is a result where Team X beats Team A or draws with Team A (full match including overtime), it’s all profits for the syndicates.

There have been recorded incidences in the past about referees and linesmen being involved in match fixing. There were also recorded incidences in the past about football players being involved in match fixing. So with all this sordid history, wouldn’t you think FIFA would want to implement video playback technology? If they have not done so and are postponing this glaring truth technology you have to ask yourself why? WHY?

This would not even be considered if video playback technology was implemented.

Casino Gambling and The Tao

It may seem strange to equate casino gambling with Taoist philosophy, but it may be because gambling is so much a part of and widely accepted in Chinese culture.

The very first recorded history of playing cards date back to 9th century China which makes sense being that they were the inventors of writing paper. The first book written with reference to playing cards dates to the Tang Dynasty (618-907) called Yezi Gexi. By the 11th century playing cards could be found throughout Asia featuring many of the 108 heroes of Lan Shun found in the Chinese classic the “Water Margin.”

In the 16th century playing cards had made their way to France and it is there that they began using the suits of picture cards that we are familiar with today based on figures of French nobility.

Taoist philosophy is said to be nearly 6,000 years old and came to prominence with the teachings of The Yellow Emperor, Huang Ti, the first emperor of China. With many of their scientific discoveries such as mathematics and astronomy, there was also a deep connection to astrology, symbology (a science of symbols and their effects), numerology and many forms of mysticism.

In the 7th Pillar of Taoism, “The Tao of Mastery,” The symbol for water is K’AN and states, “to be successful and fortunate, risk must be taken.” Luck to the ancient Taoists was a form of control and timing.

Clearly in all gambling, timing is an important factor. Regardless of the type of gambling, all of it’s forms tend to run in cycles, both winning and losing ones. It is the skill which one navigates through these cycles that the player conveys their level of control over the outcome.

The first serious studies of gambling in the 20th century were done by economists who expressed their confusion that gambling is a losing proposition and in effect, irrational behavior. In 1945 William Vickery, a noted economist, concluded that gambling should be measured not in expected gains but by the money a gambler doesn’t have that appears to be more valuable to them than what he does have.

The typical view is that gambling is self-destructive, undermines the work ethic and removes money that could be put to better uses in the economy. The notion that most people tend to gamble beyond their means remains unproven and was disputed in research conducted in 1966 in the “Economics of Gambling” published in London, England. In this study it was found to be an affective outlet for frustration, a relief from loneliness and a leveler of inequality among the economic classes.

Many psychologists view gambling as a normal form of recreation and destructive only to the addicted. They stated that the solution lies in treating the gambler, not in the condemnation of gambling as a whole.

The casino patron is courted with opulent surroundings, swimming pools, shops, shows, night life and “comped” amenities. The attraction is undeniable as an escape from tedious and purposeless occupations. Being confronted with the myth of success, when faced with insurmountable economic and social obstacles, makes the whole casino experience much easier to understand.

My own opinion is that people who gamble solely for the thrills and excitement, with no care of the economic results, would do better to find a more fulfilling and less expensive hobby. Gambling is an isolated activity. It will not take the place of a meaningful relationship nor will it counteract feelings of alienation or loneliness. These are not reasons to gamble.

Using any type of gambling to fill a void in ones personal life, something which it cannot do, is the type of gambling that can lead to devastating consequences.

If you’ve ever been in a casino, there is one thing you’ve probably noticed more than anything else… that one thing is seeing people lose money. This happens because the amateur gambler enters into this competition without a basic knowledge of the odds of the games, a playing strategy or even a thought to proper money management. It’s a careless way to handle ones money and does little to change the inevitable outcome.

Casinos love this type of gambler and spend a fortune attracting their business. With the odds squarely in their favor, the casino operators know that even though there are highly effective methods of playing that can shift those odds to the player, very few of them will invest the time or effort to use them.

Common sense tells us that if everyone that gambles in casinos lost, they would cease to exist. In order to attract losers you must have winners and it is just as easy to win at many casino games as it is to lose.

I do not write for the weekend gamblers who are looking desperately to have a good time at any cost. Winning is not even in their vocabulary. They consider the possibility of winning to be remote as if being left completely to chance.

It is the individual who is determined to win at any cost that I feel are most like myself. It is to these individuals that I offer the following. There does exist many ways to achieve your goal. Resolve that you will learn everything you have to in order to win consistently when risking your hard earned money gambling in casinos. To me, nothing else makes sense.

In the words of the ancient Taoist, Lao Tse

“Fortune favors the prepared.”

Online Gambling – Its Advantages and Disadvantages

Online gambling has become a popular game now. The history of online gambling is not very old. This game has both a good and a bad side. In certain cases playing online gambling is better than playing at live casinos and in some ways it is not. We can understand this better if we look at the various pros and cons of online gambling.

Let us first see the pros. The market of online casino and gambling is a highly competitive one. Some of the sites offer big bonuses that helps in attracting the players and they can make money. Besides, a number of sites offer various types of promotions and rewards for keeping their players.

As compared to live casinos, the online casino games have better odds and more forgiving rules as they do not posses the same overhead costs as is found in case of real casinos. The greatest advantage is that you can play it directly from your home if you have an internet access there. You do not need to travel for playing the game online.

Playing online casino games also keeps you away from the huge crowd that is found at live casino parlors. You can play at your own convenience at anytime of the day you feel like. There is no one to distract you while you are on with a game. Besides, you also do not require giving tip to the staff. Thus it helps in saving your pocket.

These were so far the positive sides of playing online gambling. Let us now take a look at its negative sides. The withdrawals associated with the game can take a longer time to come. This is not the case with live casinos. However, the money in online gambling gets transferred directly to the bank account.

Another major problem with online gambling and casino is that you do not get customer service instantly, which is true for live casinos. The online casino sites generally have telephonic support or live chat team for the players. However, the service is not that fast.

If you want to try out a variety of games at different online casino gaming sites, then you need to deposit money at each of them rather than carrying the cash around that is possible at live casinos. It depends upon you whether you find it comfortable to play at a live casino parlor or an online casino.

Why Gamblers Are Tempted to Risk More While Gambling

Introduction

Despite being on the losing spree, the people might gamble more with the hope that they will win the next game. Even the sweet memories of the past victories force the people to play more. A recent study has revealed this trend. The authors of this study have published the outcome of this study in the Journal of Experimental Psychology. In this article, we would be looking at the interesting findings brought out by this interesting study.

Recent Study

The study found that people chose to go in for further plays when the scientists reminded or primed them of past winning outcomes. It has found that people were over 15% more likely to play more by selecting the risky option. The research team from the University for Warwick in Britain believe that memories of the people play a crucial role in making certain decisions. When the team interviewed people who are in the habit of gambling, they found that subtle cues about the past victories play a significant role in propelling them forward to gamble more. This is clearer in people who go for gambling in local casinos. The gamblers even place millions of dollars in cash on the table for the final showdown in some poker tournaments with the hope that they would win in the next game.

Hypothesis

The researchers had come with the hypothesis that memory of winning outcomes in the past forced the people go for more gambling in casinos and risk lots of money on the table. The results of the study more or less confirm the roles these cues play in forcing the people to play more, risking their money. In order to cross check the hypothesis, the researchers manipulated the memory of the participants for past winning outcomes with simple risky choice tasks. The researchers achieved this by asking the participants to select one of the two doors as part of a computer test.

Testing Technique

The authors of the study gave the participants the choice of four coloured doors to select from. Three of the doors always led to guaranteed outcomes (0, 40 or 80). On the other hand, the fourth door led to a risky 50/50 outcome that carried 20 or 60 points. Later in the study, the team members reminded the participants about their past winning or losing outcome based on the points that they got, depending upon the door they opened. When the team members told the participants about the points they had got, they tended to go towards the risky door more often.