The world is healing as it continues to feel the ongoing effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has drastically changed gaming and video streaming habits around the world.
It seems only natural that activities typically associated with being indoors, such as streaming and online gambling, have increased at a time when most of the world was isolated. A study conducted by the UK Gambling Commission found that online gambling jumped 8.1% in 2020 from the previous year, while video streaming increased by 31% in the first months of the pandemic (January-July 2020 ).
“…people in the US spent 44% more time streaming in the fourth quarter of 2020 than in the last three months of 2019.”
These habits translated to the other side of the pond, as Americans spent 44% more time streaming in the fourth quarter of 2020 than in the last three months of 2019. Online gaming has also exploded. in the United States during the pandemic, although this area is more difficult to compare historically given that the betting landscape in America is in flux.
There is a key difference between the two measures, given that streaming carries little financial risk and no danger of addiction (at least not in its most threatening sense). Online gambling and betting, on the other hand, can be a heavy burden.
It is therefore inevitable that an increase in the habit will also bring a risk in the risks, and many of those states that have legalized the practice in recent years are also opening themselves up to a new wave of addicts.
Keith Whyte, Executive Director of the National Problem Gambling Council, told NBC News last year that the United States must act to stifle the threat of gambling addiction: “It’s a ticking time bomb. We must act now, but the problem is almost impossible to quantify.
“…streaming increased in kind as many people were unable to do their usual jobs…”
A study from the University of Bristol (England) showed that regular male gamblers were particularly susceptible during the pandemic, suggesting that it was not a new wave of first-time gamblers that caused the surge. The closure of many physical betting shops (both temporary and permanent) was a big factor in the increase, while boredom and the suspension of live sports also prompted players to try their hand at things. like card games, online casinos and bingo.
Likewise, streaming increased in kind as many people were unable to do their usual work and therefore found themselves with far more free time and fewer options on how to spend it.
But as the general population returns to a state of normality (as far as Covid-19 is concerned), it raises the question of whether the world will return to its previous state or maintain a new normal in front of their screens.
For so long the world has been prevented from interacting normally, with people barred from going to bars, concerts at the cinema and watching live sports. Each of these practices have been revived in most developed countries, suggesting that there will be a natural settling effect as streamers and gamers venture elsewhere.
There are no guarantees, however, as mental health has become a key talking point during the pandemic, encouraging many people to examine their work habits and dealing with anxiety. Many people are also more cost-conscious, while others are opting more for working from home, which means time spent streaming or visiting online casinos may never return to its all-time low.