7 Self-Exclusion FAQs

7 Self-Exclusion FAQs

Excluding yourself from online gambling might seem like a big step. But sometimes it’s the exact right thing you should do.

Self-exclusion from online gambling is when you take a long-term break. This is something you can enable on your online gambling accounts, which means you are excluding yourself from online gambling for the duration of that break.

If you’re worried that you are displaying problem gambling signs, then you should take steps to exclude yourself from online gambling. And if you think a loved one has a gambling problem, you should encourage them to self-exclude too.

What you need to know about excluding yourself from online gambling

How long does self-exclusion last?

Self-exclusions are long-term breaks from gambling. They are a minimum of six months long or you can decide to permanently exclude yourself from online gambling.

How do you self-exclude?

Simply go to your account settings and you should be able to find an option to self-exclude relatively easily. If you can’t find the option, contact the site’s customer care team, who can guide you through the process.

What types of gambling does self-exclusion cover?

On some websites, self-exclusion stops you from all forms of gambling. However, on others, you can decide to self-exclude yourself from one form of gambling and not others.

If you suspect you have a problem with gambling, you should exclude yourself from all forms of gambling.

Can I still gamble on other sites when I’ve self-excluded?

Sometimes self-exclusions will carry through to other sites automatically. For instance, if the sites are owned by the same parent company.

However, this isn’t always the case. We think you should actively self-exclude from all your gambling sites to remove temptation during your self-exclusion period.

Can I stop my self-exclusion?

No, when you’ve chosen to self-exclude for a certain period of time, you can’t stop or reverse this decision. You also can’t speed it up. You must wait for that period of time to elapse before you can gamble again.

What happens if I still have money in my account when I self-exclude?

If you still have money in your gambling account when you self-exclude, you can still access it. You can log in and withdraw it at any time.

Will I still get updates from gambling sites when I self-exclude?

On most gambling sites, when you choose to self-exclude, you’re automatically unsubscribed from marketing email lists. If you’re still getting them, hit unsubscribe.

If you have mobile or desktop apps, you might also still get push notifications from them. Uninstall them as soon as you can, so you’re not bothered unexpectedly.

And while you’re at it, unfollow and unsubscribe from any gambling or gambling-related sites on your social media accounts.

Get the help you need

If you are excluding yourself from online gambling because you’re worried you have a problem, there are other things you need to do as well.

You should seek help from professional organizations, who are equipped to guide you in the ways you need. In the USA, you can call the National Council on Problem Gambling on their phone line at 1800 522 4700 or access resources on their website.

UK residents can contact Be Gamble Aware via their phone line 0808 8020 133 or online. And if you’re outside of the UK and the USA, you can find international help organizations near you.

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Best Books For Darts Fans [Updated]

Best Books For Darts Fans [Updated]

The Best Dart Books

Looking for some great darting reads while the players are on their break? We suggest taking a look at some of the great darts books to get your arrows fix.

From legendary icons of the game be they broadcasters or darters, to people looking to understand and capture just what darts is and why their fans are, well, quite unlike any other, the books on this list are all perfect for book darts fans the world over.

If you have ever wanted to know more about the game we all love, these eight books are must-reads for new and old fans alike.

Let’s take a look at what you should be putting on your reading list. These books are some of the best available to fans of the sport and courtesy of a diverse group of authors with a unique view of the game.

Bellies and Bullseyes: the Outrageous True Story of Darts

Bellies and Bulleyes

Penned by the legendary darts commentator, the late, great Sid Waddell, this is a dart book with a detailed run through of the game’s transition from pub game to a proper televised sport. From mining stock in the North East, Waddell loved the game’s working-class roots and it was his eccentric wit that became the voice of darts until his death in 2012 at the age of 72. This book is a celebration of his time in the game and how he, in no small part, helped to make darts on TV what it is today.

Sid began commentating on darts in 1977 and not only was he the comedic voice of the game for over 30 years, but he was also a TV producer and the inspiration behind some legendary TV formats based on the game too. Take, Yorkshire Television’s Indoor League, a unique show that wouldn’t get aired today but somehow made the cut in the 70’s. Fronted by one-time England and Yorkshire cricket captain, ‘Fiery’ Fred Trueman, Indoor League brought pub games, including darts, to the small screen.

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Other games featured included arm-wrestling, bar billiards, shove ha’penny and table skittles and it was during this time that Sid established a friendship with SKY TV’s Dave Lanning, who would share the commentary box for many years. ITV’s legendary 80’s game show Bullseye, hosted by the late Jim Bowen, is another of Sid’s immortal ideas. He writes too about the big names of the game and their difficult upbringings and how it affected them in later years. Chief among these are Jocky Wilson, Eric Bristow and “The Greatest Darts Player Who Ever Drew Breath”, Phil “The Power” Taylor. He also details his own role in the split from the BDO and the creation of the shiny new 90’s Sky Sports’ led PDC product we enjoy today. Bellies and Bullseyes is a fascinating, well-structured, readable and often funny history of modern darts.

Eric Bristow: The Autobiography: The Crafty Cockney

Eric Bristow: The Autobiography: The Crafty Cockney

Having released an original biography at the age of 26 in 1985, Eric Bristow’s second attempt provides the fuller story of dart’s original superstar. This one is penned by the man himself and charts an extraordinary career and his personal life with his former wife Maureen, friendship with John Lowe. It also documents the tutelage of Phil Taylor, who Eric took under his wing and as he puts it, turned into a monster. This is one of the best sporting biographies around, painfully honest as it outlines his humble beginnings in London’s East End, where he was briefly employed as both a cat burglar and a shoplifter. Darts provided Bristow with the escape route he required and, inspired by his parents, he took up arrows and set out on his meteoric rise to stardom and five world championship titles.

Packed with darting anecdotes, drinking binges in the company of Cliff Lazarenko and all round tales of foolishness from the oche, this book is a riot that’s both funny and sad in equal measure, perhaps even more so now given his passing last year. The Crafty Cockney cleverly unravels the human story of the most famous darts player of his generation. The book details his near-death experience on a plane, the discovery of a brother he never knew he had, his marital breakdown, his battle with dartitis and his mother’s tragic battle with cancer. The Crafty Cockney is an absolute must for all darts fans.

Fear and Loathing on the Oche: A Gonzo Journey Through the World of Championship Darts

Fear and Loating on the Oche

Nominated for the 2018 Sports Book of The Year awards, Fear and Loathing takes you backstage at the PDC World Darts Championships. Even at the game’s premier event at the Ally Pally, you will read tales of world-class superstars, battling it out in the middle of a championship match while drinking enough lager to ensure the next morning’s hangover is severely painful. Author King Adz paints a strange portrait of the game and shares insights into the colourful and inebriated characters he meets along the way.

In the book, he aims to find out what drives the crazy fan base, almost none of whom come along sober or normally dressed. Not that we need reminding but the book goes out of its way to outline why darts fans are unlike any other fans in world sport. Drinking more than most and wearing the silliest costumes, they also sing the loudest and truly create one of sports most atmospheric occasions. The book also takes time to talk to former legends, future stars, owners, hosts, referees and those nutty, nutty fans. This book captures just how bonkers darts really is and why that is exactly why we love it.

Heart of Dart-ness: Bullseyes, Boozers and Modern Britain

Heart of Dart-ness: Bullseyes, Boozers and Modern Britain

In which ITV football host Ned Boulting takes a humorous look into just what exactly darts is. By this he means, is it a sport, a pub game, a side-show or something else entirely. Boulting achieves his mission with some style and the end result is a funny and heartfelt look at modern Britain and darts’ place in it. Traveling the length and width of the Isle from the tip of Scotland to the point of Landsend, Cardiff to Minehead, Milton Keynes to Frankfurt, London to Liverpool, the author takes the reader on a journey back to the beginning of the modern game.

He meets with the likes of Phil Taylor, Michael van Gerwen and Raymond van Barneveld as well as Andy ‘The Viking’ Fordham – whose fifty beers a day habit led to his near death on the oche – and Cliff Lazarenko, another ferocious drinker. Boulting also manages to speak with Eric Bristow in what must be one the great’s last ever interviews which makes for poignant reading. In the end, we’re left with more questions than answers but don’t let that put you off — this is a forensic examination of the game we love, whether it be a sport, a boozy pastime, pondering the latest darts betting tips, or simply a cracking night out.

Staying Power: A Year In My Life

Staying Power: A Year In My Life

As for Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor, there are two books that are worth a look. There is the 2007 release, The Power: My Autobiography (written by, you guessed it, Sid Waddell) and the 2014 edition, Staying Power: A Year In My Life. For the purposes of this list, we have selected the latter, a year in the life of the most successful darts player of all time. Taylor is the undisputed king of darts, as his unrivaled sixteen World Championship titles will attest.

Starting out as a protégé of Eric Bristow after walking into his pub with a set of darts, Taylor soon eclipsed the Crafty Cockney himself. Twice nominated for BBC Sports Personality of the Year, this book ironically follows Taylor on one of his less-successful seasons in which he crashed out at the Ally Pally in the second round to Michael Smith and admits to falling asleep on Christmas day, exhausted from the strain of constant winning.

It was also the season in which he triumphed in arguably the greatest ever game of darts, the Grand Slam semi-final against Adrian Lewis as well as forecasting the emergence of Dutch superstar Michael van Gerwen. Filled with tales of spats and hecklers, clashes on stage and off, this book sensitively outlines a year in the life of one of the sport’s greatest champions, re-finding the inspiration and fighting hard to stay in power before the bell tolls, as indeed it now has.

Murder on the Darts Board

Murder on the Darts Board

In 2008’s Murder of the Darts Board, the writer Justin Irwin chronicles how he quit his job as the director of a national charity organisation in order to spend a year attempting to make it as a professional darts player. Irwin ponders whether hard work alone is enough to turn him into a great player, an idea that Andy Fordham noted as barmy. The focus of the book is, as always, the World Championships and in building up to the event Irwin practises between four and six hours a day while taking part in several tournaments, albeit with very little success.

Sadly, in qualifying for the big one he had the misfortune to draw former quarter-finalist Simon “Chopper” Whatley in the first round in Hull. Without spoiling the ending – the book is about the journey rather than the result – Irwin was whitewashed bringing his fledgling chucking career to an abrupt end. Irwin chronicles his efforts with great humour and perception, while managing to land the bullseye on paper if not on the board.

We Had Some Laughs

We Had Some Laughs

While the first book in this list looks at the evolution of darts by the man who played a dominant role in its success, this title looks at the man himself from the viewpoint of his son. Dan Waddell’s We Had Some Laughs is a hugely entertaining biography of his dad Sid and fills in the parts that Sid’s own book omitted, such as his childhood in a Northumbrian mining village before winning the grammar scholarship that would propel him to Cambridge and change his life forever.

From there, we learn how Sid would go on to dedicate his professional life to what he descried as “fat men throwing things at the wall”. Beginning with a starter job on local TV to moving to the BBC in 1977, where would go on to perfect the style that would win him an army of fans over the following 30 years. Every move is relayed by an eye witness to it all with the blurry-eyed romance of young boy thrown into the beery, smoky, blokey atmosphere of 1980’s darts halls.

Dan perfectly captures his teenage experiences in particular being at the World Championships during darts’ all-drinking, all-smoking heyday in this moving and funny account of Sid’s colourful life and career and a son’s memories of his larger than life father.

Slinging Arrows: How (not) to be a professional darts player

This 2021 release from Sky Sports darts commentator Wayne Mardle lifts the lid on a career that didn’t hit the heights it should have. Nicknamed Hawaii 501 on account of the colourful Hawaiian shirts he would wear when playing (forty-five quid if you’re interested, he has a garage full of them), Mardle was a crowd-pleaser if not a prolific winner.

While he may be more famous off the oche than on it, he remains one of the biggest characters in darts and one of the planet’s most recognisable players. In this comical book, he details his encounters with all of the greats he came up against in his career and would ultimately lose to. His finest performances include five runs to the semi-finals at the World Championships and this tale pulls no punches when outlining where he went wrong.

This isn’t a melancholy story of regret though, this is a witty and humorous account of why perhaps it’s not a great idea to go on a two day Vegas booze bender immediately before a major PDC final or why it’s best to avoid being sued by a well-known biscuit manufacturer.

It is also a totally honest and poignant guide to a lifetime spent in the game by a true darts obsessionist who once unknowingly appeared live on Belgian TV swearing so profusely that clips are still replayed years later (why wasn’t he told he was live?).

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8 Warning Signs That Your Loved One Has A Gambling Problem

8 Warning Signs That Your Loved One Has A Gambling Problem

A gambling problem is a scary thing to come to terms with. If you suspect someone you love has a gambling problem, it can be hard to know where to start.

We’re going to give you some of the common warning signs of gambling problems. And then you can try to identify if you’ve seen those signs in your loved one. But keep in mind, if you are worried at all, don’t ignore that feeling. You should still seek help if their gambling makes you uncomfortable.

1. Do they find it difficult to stop spending?

If they often lose the run of their spending, particularly while gambling, this can be a big warning sign.

2. Do they spend a lot of time gambling?

While most people gamble for a relatively short amount of time in their week, some people can spend hours upon hours gambling. This can be an indication they have an issue.

3. Do they lie about their gambling?

If they try to hide the fact they’re gambling from people or lie about it, this can show they are covering up a larger problem.

4. Do they borrow or even steal to fund their habit?

No one should ever gamble with more than they can afford. People who borrow money in order to gamble, simply shouldn’t be gambling. And, of course, stealing is an even worse sign.

5. Does gambling cause friction in their relationships?

Whether it’s with you or someone else they’re close to, when gambling is a constant source of arguments and conflict in general, it’s not good.

6. Are they becoming increasingly withdrawn?

Is your loved one cancelling plans with family and friends and becoming more and more insular? This might mean they have or are developing problem gambling.

7. Have they lost interest in their hobbies?

Similarly, we all need a variety of things to keep us going in life. If gambling begins to eclipse hobbies and activities they used to enjoy, that is a bad sign.

8. Has their work or studies began to suffer?

Constantly calling in sick to work or university, underperforming in areas they used to excel in, failing exams, missing deadlines, getting cautions. All of these things indicate something major is happening in their life. If that is gambling, it needs to stop.

Answered yes to any of these questions? Get the help you and your loved one needs

The sad truth is that you cannot force your loved one to stop gambling, even if you suspect they have a gambling problem. But you can talk to them frankly and honestly about their concerns and encourage them to get the help they need.

Before you have that difficult, but necessary, conversation, seek some help from expert organizations. They are here to support you and have appropriate resources to help you start this conversation.

If you’re in the United States, the National Council on Problem Gambling can help online or via phone on 1800 522 4700. For those in the United Kingdom, visit Be Gamble Aware or call 0808 8020 133. And for other countries and regions, here’s a comprehensive list of international gambling help websites.

And remember, if you know your loved one has a problem and they are still gambling online, you can contact that gambling website directly via customer services to voice your concerns and, potentially, get their account shut down.

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