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Poker News - The Gambler's Fallacy Explained

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Poker News - The Gambler's Fallacy Explained - Tue Apr 08, 2014, 01:55 PM
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royalraise85's Avatar
Since: Jul 2011
Posts: 26,028
(Community Coordinator)
Misguided belief in the big win just around the corner could be down to brain activity


I just came across this interesting article in the English Independent newspaper. Apparently scientists now believe that non-gamblers show different brain activity patterns than gamblers who they say have developed a mis-guided belief that they can always beat the odds.

In the article they labeled this type of behavior as 'distorted thinking' which may sound offensive to the more seasoned poker player who work very hard at their game and learn how to maximize their opportunities at the poker tables.

So I guess it boils down to the age old question 'Is Poker gambling?' My mother sure thinks so and it's hard to convince her otherwise. Of course I think of it as a game of skill and I don't consider myself a gambler at all. Then again, Daniel Negreanu once said in an interview that his mother always disliked poker until he bought her a house in Vegas and suddenly she developed a love for the game.

So what's your thoughts? Is poker a game of skill that's good for our mental activity or are we training our brain to develop bad habits that will become our pitfall in later years?

Raiser


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Tue Apr 08, 2014, 02:20 PM
(#2)
bhoylegend's Avatar
Since: Jun 2012
Posts: 2,261
Quote:
Originally Posted by royalraise85 View Post
So what's your thoughts? Is poker a game of skill that's good for our mental activity or are we training our brain to develop bad habits that will become our pitfall in later years?
I 100% believe it is a game of skill with an element of luck added to it, and the element of luck is necessary for the game to be even remotely sustainable (And reading reports online the overall poker traffic is on a downward trend), as it keeps the donators (Net depositors) coming back when they know they occasionally win a big hand or a tournament.

Is it good for our mental activity? I guess the question that is being asked is whether it is a game that keeps our mind sharp, and I think it is good for that, because there are usually innumerable permutations to every hand and situation apart from the totally clear decisions. So we need to be on top of that.

Is it good for our mental health? This wasn't the question being asked but it came to my mind when I initially read the question asked. I think for some it is too much to handle, possibly for the majority, it takes a certain mentality to be good at poker. You need to disregard that you are playing for money, you need to ignore that you might be taking someones money, money they need to live etc. You kinda need to be cold hearted, or ignorant, to be good in every situation.

That's my take on it anyway
 
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Tue Apr 08, 2014, 02:32 PM
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ArtySmokesPS's Avatar
Since: Oct 2011
Posts: 7,355
It's an interesting/believable theory, but I don't think that the majority of losing poker players are actually "brain-damaged", in the same way that most people who play the lottery every week aren't brain damaged. They just aren't very good at maths.


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