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Gambling information, advice and support for young people

Gambling: Jargon Buster!

Gambling can be confusing – take a look below to find out some useful terms!

Affected Others

Those who are negatively impacted by someone else’s gambling.


The act of risking a sum of money against the outcome of an unpredictable event such as a race or game.

Chasing Losses

Continually returning to gambling to try and recover money lost. Despite their losses, the harmful gambler continues playing, and their finances keep getting worse.

Content Filtering Software

Software designed to restrict the access that a user is authorised to have, this can be used to prevent children accessing betting and gaming websites.


Where an individual has more than one disorder, this could be for example gambling disorders paired with substance abuse or anxiety

Fixed Odd Betting Terminal (FOBT)

Is a machine normally found in betting shops in the United Kingdom that allows players to bet on the outcome of various games and events with fixed odds.

Like all casino games, the “house” (i.e. the casino) has a built-in advantage, with current margins on roulette games being theoretically between 2.7% and 5%.


Risking stakes for money or monies worth, placing bets on the outcome of a game or event

House Edge

The advantage a gambling company has over its players in any given game. Normally given as a percentage. The percentage represents the amount the player would expect to lose on that bet over an infinite amount of time.

Indicators of harmful gambling

Signs that a player may be displaying behaviours that are associated with harmful gambling


The very biggest prize that you can win on any given game, pay outs that are often very large but occur very infrequently.


The amount paid to the player from a favourable outcome of a game.


Money and/or entitlement won by a player (also referred to as ‘winnings’).

Harmful gambling

Harmful gambling is an urge to gamble continuously despite harmful consequences or a desire to stop. Harmful gambling is often defined by harm experienced by the gambler or others

Random Number Generator

Used to create random, irregular strings of numbers. The algorithms and systems behind the creation of the numbers mean that the numbers are impossible to predict. The randomly generated numbers are then used as results for machine and online games such as roulette, dice or other games needing a random result.

Reality Check

Any tool which is used to bring the player back to the real world during a gaming session. An example of this would be an onscreen clock.

Return to player percentage

The average returned to the player of a gaming machine over a period of time. The average return to player per spin is measured over 10,000 or even 100,000 spins or turns and is not an expectation of return each time a machine is played.

Self Exclusion

Process whereby an individual can ask a gambling operator prevent them from gambling with them for a set length of time – usually between six months and five years. By law, this must be provided as an option by gambling operators in the UK.

Underage person

Any person who is under the legal age to take part in the gambling.


Money/prize in favour of the player won from the gambling activity.