Adolescent betting on esports using cash and skins: Links with gaming, monetary gambling, and problematic gambling

Nerilee Hing, Lisa Lole, Alex M.T. Russell, Matthew Rockloff, Daniel L. King, Matthew Browne, Philip Newall, Nancy Greer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
27 Downloads (Pure)


Adolescents can easily access esports betting sites and place bets using cash or skins. This descriptive cross-sectional study examined the characteristics of adolescent esports bettors and relationships between their esports betting, video gaming activities, monetary gambling participation, and at-risk/problem gambling. Two survey samples of Australians aged 12–17 years were recruited through advertisements (n = 841) and online panel providers (n = 826). In both samples, gender and parents’ living situation did not differ by past-month esports cash and skin betting, but recent esports betting was associated with engaging in esports gaming activities such as playing and watching esports, and in monetary gambling activities. Past-month esports betting using cash and skins was significantly associated with at-risk/ problem gambling. After controlling for recent monetary gambling, recent esports skin bettors were over 3 times more likely to meet criteria for at-risk/problem gambling. Esports betting using skins appears to pose risks for young people and is easily accessible through unlicensed operators.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0266571
Number of pages16
JournalPLoS One
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 5 May 2022


  • adolescent betting
  • Esports betting
  • cash in betting
  • skins in betting
  • monetary gambling
  • problematic gambling
  • betting sites
  • unlicensed operators


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