Effects of Gambling Advertisements
Outcome expectancies are defined as how an individual decides to behave or act due to what they expect the result of that behavior will be. Little research has investigated the role of outcome expectancies in gambling. To increase our understanding of the influence of both implicit and explicit outcome expectancies in gambling, this study investigated the role of exposure to gambling cues on the activation of implicit and explicit gambling outcome expectancies using both reaction time and self-report measures. This study found that that brief exposure (i.e., 30 seconds) to gambling advertisements while simultaneously engaged in another cognitive task activated implicit but not explicit positive gambling outcome expectancies in regular gamblers' memory networks. On the other hand, gambling advertisement exposure did not activate implicit or explicit negative gambling outcome expectancies. Findings of the current research provide an argument for stricter guidelines placed on the content of gambling advertisements, such as information regarding the potential risks associated with problem gambling. Results also point to the importance of focusing on altering implicit associations as a potential intervention for problem gambling.