Published: May 30, 2023

Relationship Lottomatica-Censis on legal gaming in Italy: 23 million Italians play every year, for 61% it is a form of entertainment

Second Report Lottomatica-Censis, presented today in Rome at the Sala Capitolare of Palazzo della Minerva of the Senate of the Republic, re-proposes part of the most relevant themes that emerged in the First Report made in 2021 since, at this stage, it is essential to fix some firm points on the social significance and functions of the legal gaming sector, so that once and for all we can go beyond simplistic readings, at the basis of useless or even harmful interventions for the community.

There are two points from which to start: the game is an ordinary activity, of pure fun, which millions of Italians carry out in an absolutely spontaneous and natural way; legal gambling is the most diehard enemy of illegal gambling, usually run by organized crime.

The data of this Relationship certify these two elementary truths, in continuity with those of the first edition. Both the dynamics that emerged in the pandemic, when the blockage of the legal sector paved the way for the illegal one to take off, and the common sense of Italians confirm the irreducibly inverse relationship between legal and illegal gaming.

This is why it is time for the confrontation in the public debate to be based on a conception of the legal game as a resource to be exploited for the multiple functions it performs in the social and economic sphere, as an ecosystem that favors the creation of businesses and new jobs, redistributes income and generates tax benefits to the benefit of public spending.

These are sufficient arguments to go beyond prejudices, cognitive biases and clichés, finally putting the legal gaming sector and its many and various protagonists, from concessionaires to companies, in the best conditions to operate to maximize the economic and social value that their activity generates.

47% of Italians happened to play one or more legal games in the last year between Lotto, Lottery, Superenalotto, sports and non-sports bets, Bingo, online games, slot machines. This is almost 23 million people: it is the demonstration that gaming is an activity inherent in the culture and daily life of Italians, which can be practiced in a responsible, measured and healthy way.

The choice to play cuts across social groups and territories and in fact 65,2% of young people play, 56,7% of adults and 16,5% of the elderly; 53,1% of low incomes and 37,5% of highest incomes; 38,9% of those who live in smaller municipalities, 52,5% in intermediate ones and 58,2% in larger ones; 42,3% of those who reside in the North-West, 36,7% in the North-East, 46,5% in the Center and 57,1% in the South and Islands; 54% of men and 40,4% of women.

Among those who play, 56,4% happened to do so online during the year: 17,2% often, 39,2% occasionally. 43,6% of those who gambled legally in the last year, on the other hand, never did it online.

Young people (74,7%, of which 20,1% often), men (63,5%, 20,1% often), graduates (61,8, 15,9%, of which 62,2% often) and residents of the South and Islands (24,6%, XNUMX% often).

Regarding the reasons why people play, 61,1% declare that it is fun, exciting, 59,5% hope to win, 22% like it and, in some cases, it is a passion, for 17% it is a habit that relaxes and for 2,8% it is an opportunity to relate to others. More generally, for 69,4% of Italians, gaming is a human attitude, there is nothing wrong with practicing it, the important thing is to give rules.

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