The impact of pop-up warning messages of losses on expenditure in a simulated game of online roulette: a pilot study

McGivern, P., Hussain, Z. ORCID: 0000-0002-7678-6615, Lipka, S. and Stupple, E., 2019. The impact of pop-up warning messages of losses on expenditure in a simulated game of online roulette: a pilot study. BMC Public Health, 19: 822. ISSN 1471-2458

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Background: ‘Pop-up’ warning messages have potential as a Responsible Gambling tool, but many warning messages in the literature are generic. The present study simulated digital roulette to compare the effectiveness of expenditure-specific, generic and control messages, during online roulette.

Methods: Forty-five casual gamblers participated in a laboratory setting. Gambles were ‘rigged’ such that participants suffered a net loss. Total ‘play money’ wagers from individual bets after the presentation of the messages were measured.

Results: Expenditure-specific warning messages demonstrated significant reductions in wager amounts compared with other message types - Generic (p = .035) and Control messages (p < .001). No significant differences were found between Generic and Control messages (p > .05). Thus expenditure-specific warning messages about current losses were more effective than generic messages for reducing expenditure.

Conclusions: Expenditure-specific warning messages exhibit potential for ameliorating potentially harmful gambling behaviour. Expenditure-specific messages should be tested in a broader range of gambling contexts to examine their generalizability and potential for implementation in the gambling industry.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: BMC Public Health
Creators: McGivern, P., Hussain, Z., Lipka, S. and Stupple, E.
Publisher: BioMed Central Ltd.
Date: 26 June 2019
Volume: 19
ISSN: 1471-2458
7191Publisher Item Identifier
Rights: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 19 Sep 2019 15:57
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2019 15:57

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