About Gamblers Fallacies
What if someone comes forth and offers you a bet that they’d toss a coin 10 times and get tails in every toss. You are free to pick any coin you like, just so you can be sure about its fairness. What kind of odds would you be willing to provide on such a bet? Would you go ahead and offer 100 to 1? Or perhaps 1000 to 1? You may possibly offer 1000 to 1 and have a high likelihood of coming out victorious.
What if this person flips the coin exactly 9 times and it comes up as tails in each one of those instances? Would you be willing to still give this person 1000 to 1 odds against tails in the 10th flip? It would be a huge mistake if you do that, and it’s this mistake which is popularly known as the gambler’s fallacy in the sports betting and gambling world.
The main principle behind the gambler’s fallacy
As per gambler’s fallacy, all previous events are bound to impact the odds of a current random event. The example that we talked about above wherein tails shows up exactly 9 times in a row, should have no effect at all on whether you’ll get heads or tails in the 10th flip of the coin.
Once you’re done with 9 flips, the odds applicable to the 10th flip to come out as tails are still 50 – 50, just like what they were in the very first flip till the 9th flip. Please remember that unlike humans, coins don’t have any memory and the tossing of a coin remains a random event whether you flip a completely different coin or flip it any number of times.
How gambler’s fallacy can impact sports betting and casino gambling?
Gambler’s fallacy often plays a huge role in casino gambling activities. You’ll often see people trying to seek repeating patterns, in the vain hope of gaining some advantage over the casino.
So, if a gambler notices that red has turned up a certain number of times on a roulette wheel, he might feel more inclined to bet on red during the next spin. If one has lost on many roulette spins in a row, he’d be more inclined to double his bets, assuming that his odds of scoring a win would be better.
This in fact is what forms the basis of the Martingale System fallacy, wherein you see players doubling up their bets after every loss. If we talk about short-term, losses can happen any number of times in succession, without making any alteration to the game. Gamblers who are regularly taken in by this fallacy are likely to find themselves in major problems if they persist with this method.
It’s important for you to understand that it’s actually a fallacy only in situations wherein you play replacement games, and the conditions remain the same in every trial. But if we were to talk about blackjack, wherein some cards may not be replaced instantly, the prior events can possibly impact the future occurrences, something which forms the basis for people who indulge in card counting.