The last work of Neil Lawrence before he passed away in July 2015 had incredible furor on TV. The documentary about pokies addiction was widely discussed before the presentation and it was obvious that it was deemed to succeed.

Akin to the name of a popular online slot, Cash Splash, Australia has become the pokies capital of the world. Australians spend about $12 billion a year on poker machines and online casinos and now there are about 400,000 problem gamblers in Australia. These sophisticated machines were developed over a long period of time to become as attractive to users as drugs like heroin, nicotine and cocaine.

Ka-Ching reveals why pokies are so addictive. The documentary takes you inside the machine to find out the answer. You can find the explanation how pokies are rigged to keep you hooked. World-leading neuroscientists clarify how pokies work on the deepest levels of our brains and what makes our governments become the biggest addicts of all. So, there is no doubt that this film is worth seeing.


But who is guilty? The government, gambling companies or irresponsible people?

The government and gambling companies push a “responsible gambling” message claiming that poker machines are naturally safe, except for irresponsible people. According to Charles Livingstone, public health advocate, the responsibility for gambling problems is transferred to gamblers rather than those profiting from the product. So, the focus was on punters.

The aim of Lawrence’s doco was to shift the focus back onto a machine that is designed to be highly addictive. Well, if you missed this movie on TV you can watch it on iview. Tom Cummings helped us to find it with his tweet.

And do you believe in hypnotism of poker machines? What about playing free online pokies at home? How can it harm if it’s free and offers lots of bonuses? Yes, you can spend lots of time playing it, so it can look as a waste of time for some people, but it’s a kind of having fun. So why not to try your luck?