App teaching children casino video poker?

Concern has been raised over whether children are in fact being taught the ins and outs of casino video poker, following the success of a mobile phone app.

Slotmania is a smartphone app which allows the player to use credits to buy games closely resembling online slot games.

The app has become immensely popular worldwide, and has even been named the highest-grossing app in Australia in 2012.

However, critics and parents have raised concern over the fact that there are no age restrictions in place to keep children from playing on the app.

“As parents know, even small children are incredibly techno-savvy these days, are very likely to play any game they find on a mobile phone. A trend of children playing video poker-style games from a young age could encourage excessive gambling tendencies later on. It is essentially teaching kids to gamble from an early age – before they have the adult self-control and budget experience for this to be a moderated and harmless pastime, rather than a destructive compulsion,” said Mary Fitzherbert, a mother of two and a freelance online marketing specialist in the United Kingdom.

As of early this year, several Australian politicians are pushing to have national legislation changed, as current law allows the app to exist owing to a loophole – namely that players cannot win money from the app, only spend it.

The matter is currently being discussed at parliament.