Interpassive Gambling

The Case of Slot Machine Vlogs on YouTube




Gambling-related media, Slot machines, YouTube, User generated content, Interpassivity, gamblification


Slot machines are recognized as a particularly risky form of gambling. However, there is a form of slot machine consumption that seems to have largely escaped the notice of regulators and scholars: the streaming of slot machine play on YouTube and other platforms. In this article, we present the results of our qualitative study of 21 slot machine videos. Our study examines how these videos portray gambling and how they align with the norms of YouTube’s platform economy. Our analysis underscores the representation of slot machine gambling in this under-regulated media, emphasizing different tactics of viewer manipulation. We introduce the concept of interpassive gambling to reflect the ways that user-generated videos are a form of diffusion of gambling mechanics beyond traditional gambling venues. We conclude by calling for more scholarly and regulatory attention to this gamblified site of media consumption.

Author Biographies

Pauline Hoebanx, Concordia University, Montreal

Pauline Hoebanx is a doctoral candidate in the department of Sociology and Anthropology at Concordia University. Her research interests include the transformation of digital spaces and digital communications; the mobilization of anti-feminist movements online; and the moderation of risky behaviors on social media platforms.

Martin French, Concordia University, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Montreal

Martin French is an associate professor with the Department of Sociology & Anthropology at Concordia University. His research examines the social dimensions of technology with an empirical focus on communications & information technology (CIT). Martin is currently leading a research project examining how ‘risky’, ‘dangerous’ and ‘contested’ forms of consumption are sensed, surveyed, and governed in contemporary life.


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How to Cite

Hoebanx, P., & French, M. (2023). Interpassive Gambling: The Case of Slot Machine Vlogs on YouTube. Critical Gambling Studies, 4(1), 66–76.



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