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Huge Increase in Internet Gambling in UK

September 14, 2010 (CAP News Wire) – Internet gambling is more popular than Facebook in the UK, boasting a whopping 40 percent increase over the course of the past year, according to a recent report released by Nielsen. 

“An additional 3.2 million people logged on to gambling websites last year, compared with only 2.2 million more who accessed social networking sites such as Facebook and its near-rivals,” summarized the Herald Sun.

Among online gambling sites, Internet poker websites are still proving to be the most popular. reports an increase of 870,000 visitors last year — a surge of 174 percent.

Other interesting factors in the report: Almost half of the UK’s online gamblers “earn more than £30,000 ($49,717)” annually; 46 percent of online gamblers are women; and Internet gambling isn’t reflecting the traditional land-based gambling patterns of being dominated by older players.

“The over-65s and those on lower household incomes have historically been heavy users of gambling sites, but in the face of the recession this profile is changing,” said Neil Beston, of Nielsen, per the Herald Sun article.

“While the phenomenal growth in gambling sites over the last two years has been driven by men and women of all ages, it appears to be powered particularly by middle-aged men, the well-educated and high-earning households,” Beston added.