Slot machines have a special attraction, as a winning payout seems to permanently beckon. The operators are exploiting an addiction, and their profits come mostly from pathological gamblers or those at risk becoming so. It is a business of false hopes, because players - usually young, almost exclusively male, often with a migration background - have no change in long term: "Those who claim to have won," goes an old pearl of gaming wisdom, "have just not played long enough." Studies talk of the "heroin of the 1990s": the profits go to private individuals, but it is society that bears the follow-up costs.
(text from the exhibition: Game and the City, in the Wien Museum)
Betting cafes - by Miriam Scheffknecht