Title

Putting the cards on the table: perceived factors influencing frequency of participation in land-based poker tournaments

Document Type

Article

Publication details

Edelhoff, M 2012, 'Putting the cards on the table: perceived factors influencing frequency of participation in land-based poker tournaments', Gambling Research, vol. 24, no. 1, pp. 3-17.

Peer Reviewed

Peer-Reviewed

Abstract

Poker tournaments are now regular events in Australian clubs and pubs. However, minimal research has been conducted into non-internet poker tournaments. This study examined the factors which influence the frequency of player participation in poker tournaments in northern New South Wales (NSW), Australia. Participant observation and semi-structured interviews were conducted with 13 participants and one poker league operator. Constructivist grounded theory was used to conduct analyses. The main reason reported for tournament participation was social interaction. The study found that tournaments overcome social, age and gender barriers, with the focus being on the game. Social benefits such as social interaction, challenges of improving poker playing skills and increased self-esteem were reportedly important and perceived to influence interviewees' frequency of tournament participation. This study is the first exploration of poker playing in regional tournaments and adds to the scant body of knowledge on recreational gambling and associated social benefits.