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(PennLive)   The nation's "luckiest" lottery players may not be as lucky as they seem   ( pennlive.com) divider line
    More: Obvious, frequent winners, Powerball, lottery, State lotteries of the United States, frequent winning, Scratchcard, Multi-State Lottery Association, Lotteries in the United States  
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1279 clicks; posted to Discussion » on 13 Sep 2017 at 10:50 AM (36 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



23 Comments     (+0 »)
 
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2017-09-13 10:40:03 AM  
Apropos of nothing, what's that disgusting material they put on scratch-off tickets anyway? That stuff that looks like you just dug it out from under your fingernails?
 
2017-09-13 10:55:35 AM  
I suspect the idea is that these lottery players buy boatloads of tickets and might eventually win enough to break even.


*goes to RTFA*

 
2017-09-13 11:11:33 AM  
So here's the scratch-off get rich scheme:
1. get a convenience store
2. peek at tickets and/or cheat the elderly out of their winning tickets
3. profit.

/was hoping for something easier
 
2017-09-13 11:43:43 AM  

gopher321: Apropos of nothing, what's that disgusting material they put on scratch-off tickets anyway? That stuff that looks like you just dug it out from under your fingernails?


UV ink.

Also I've suspected for years that there might be a few perennial winners in PA who are fed winning tickets by the lottery in order to retain interest.  Gotta hear about a "big winner" once every few months or Mabel from Allegheny County won't forgo her roof repairs for another week in order to buy her chance at the American Dream.
 
2017-09-13 11:47:45 AM  
Every convenience store in America has 50 bricks of these pieces of cardboard lying around. Every one of those bricks has a ticket in it worth at least a month's wages for the drones who sell them and are left largely unsupervised all night. (source: was drone)

The fact that there isn't massive, rampant, industry-killing tampering with the physical ticket at the point of sale means that either the ticket itself is some kind of futuristic miracle technology, or we are suffering from a crippling nationwide shortage of imagination and drive. And I don't think scratch-ems are futuristic miracle technology.

That's why today I'm announcing the Semiotix Resourcefulness Prize, a $50,000 award to be given to the first successfully demonstrated technology that can flawlessly repair or replace the scratch-off material on tickets using only substances found inside a typical 7-11.

/prize payable a few weeks after I get my old Kwik-E-Mart job back
 
2017-09-13 01:04:24 PM  
Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.
 
2017-09-13 01:15:40 PM  

Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.


Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
img.fark.netView Full Size

And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.
 
2017-09-13 02:00:51 PM  

Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.

Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
[img.fark.net image 850x497]
And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.


Random is random.  There's always the yoyo who sits down at a poker table and draws a royal flush on his first hand too.
 
2017-09-13 02:03:05 PM  
I'll take portable MRI or X-Ray machine for $100, Alex. More likely it's an inside job at the ticket plants. How many workers have retired early then disappeared?
 
2017-09-13 02:28:45 PM  

Great_Milenko: Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.

Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
[img.fark.net image 850x497]
And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.

Random is random.  There's always the yoyo who sits down at a poker table and draws a royal flush on his first hand too.


You keep returning to a single instance to dismiss this, which is why I'm now suspecting you work for the lottery. This is the case of the yoyo who sits down at the poker table and draws 7000 royal flushes in a row. Twice is coincidence, three times is enemy action.
 
2017-09-13 02:31:45 PM  

Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.

Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
[img.fark.net image 850x497]
And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.


There's something wrong with the math in TFA.  It's one in 10 chance of getting that many winning tickets, it's one in ten million.  I don't know what goes in to the math but that doesn't seem right.   The payout on $300m would be at least $180m to players based on 30 seconds of internet research.

Why would it be 10 million to one against $10.8m of those winnings (from TFA) being won on $600 plus tickets?
 
2017-09-13 02:50:12 PM  

Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.

Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
[img.fark.net image 850x497]
And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.

Random is random.  There's always the yoyo who sits down at a poker table and draws a royal flush on his first hand too.

You keep returning to a single instance to dismiss this, which is why I'm now suspecting you work for the lottery. This is the case of the yoyo who sits down at the poker table and draws 7000 royal flushes in a row. Twice is coincidence, three times is enemy action.


  Actually, that's when the casino sends "Sal" over to have a "talk" with youse. Takes a few pics of you-for future "reference" in case you're dumb enough to visit said casino again, and to make sure their employees know just who you are. Then, maybe even a personal escort out of the casino! Which may, probably, include forfeiture of any winnings, as it could be seen as cheating by the nice people at the casino.
 
2017-09-13 02:56:16 PM  

Debeo Summa Credo: Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.

Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
[img.fark.net image 850x497]
And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.

There's something wrong with the math in TFA.  It's one in 10 chance of getting that many winning tickets, it's one in ten million.  I don't know what goes in to the math but that doesn't seem right.   The payout on $300m would be at least $180m to players based on 30 seconds of internet research.

Why would it be 10 million to one against $10.8m of those winnings (from TFA) being won on $600 plus tickets?


So, it's not a payout of $300M - that's what he would've needed to spend to get those winnings. And it's not a single $10M win - it's 7300 wins, totaling $10M in payouts.
As for how the odds are calculated, it's laid out in this companion article. Basically, in order for him to have a 1/10 chance of getting 7300 wins, playing games that themselves have 1-in-100k odds, he would have had to spend hundreds of millions on tickets, the vast majority of which were losers.
 
2017-09-13 02:58:16 PM  

I am Tom Joad's Complete Lack of Surprise: I'll take portable MRI or X-Ray machine for $100, Alex. More likely it's an inside job at the ticket plants. How many workers have retired early then disappeared?


Friend who works with the TSA and you wait until he's on scanner duty, tape a bunch of tickets under your clothes, and go through security?
 
2017-09-13 04:39:20 PM  

Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.

Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
[img.fark.net image 850x497]
And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.


Not to mention that lottery tickets would not be a sound investment even if you had the money to "stick around." You lose money playing lotto; this is a mathematical fact. Even if you win big, you still lose money. Lottery is not a fair game.
 
2017-09-13 05:24:21 PM  

Theaetetus: Debeo Summa Credo: Theaetetus: Great_Milenko: Its the same as a casino.  Eventually a ticket/hand/spin will be a winner.  it's just a question of having the fortitude and the funds to stick around until it does.  There have to be winners, or no one would continue playing.  The advantage always belongs to the house, of course, but without someone winning there would be a diminishing pool of losers.

Though your dismissal is technically accurate, it rests on the presumption that this guy had $300 million in funds to "stick around":
[img.fark.net image 850x497]
And that's for the conservative 1-in-10 odds. To get to a 50% chance, he's had to have spent $1.5 Billion.

There's something wrong with the math in TFA.  It's one in 10 chance of getting that many winning tickets, it's one in ten million.  I don't know what goes in to the math but that doesn't seem right.   The payout on $300m would be at least $180m to players based on 30 seconds of internet research.

Why would it be 10 million to one against $10.8m of those winnings (from TFA) being won on $600 plus tickets?

So, it's not a payout of $300M - that's what he would've needed to spend to get those winnings. And it's not a single $10M win - it's 7300 wins, totaling $10M in payouts.
As for how the odds are calculated, it's laid out in this companion article. Basically, in order for him to have a 1/10 chance of getting 7300 wins, playing games that themselves have 1-in-100k odds, he would have had to spend hundreds of millions on tickets, the vast majority of which were losers.


Okay, that companion article goes into a lot more detail.  Thank you for posting.

TFA, however, doesn't use 1/10, it says 1 in 10million chance even if they guy bought $300m worth of tickets. So I think the author of TFA made a mistake there.

The simplest example given in your article is a game that costs $10 and gives you 1/12000 chance of winning a $1,000 prize. I can buy the "1 in 10 chance of getting 7,800 $1,000 winners if you spend $300m" argument on that game.  Expected number of $1,000 tickets there would be $300m/$10per ticket*(1/12000 chance any particular ticket wins $1k prize)=2,500.   I don't have the statistical chops to determine how likely an observation of >7,800 would occur when expected is 2,500 in this case but 1 in 10 would be reasonable I suppose.

However, the payout on scratch tickets is above 60%.  So if someone spent $120,000 on tickets they'd expect exactly on $1,000 winner, meaning the other (120k*.6-1k=$71k) in expected winnings would be for tickets below the $1,000 amount (assuming $1,000 is the highest payout in this game and if it weren't it makes it even more likely that the winnings are legit) It would seem unlikely for any  scratch games that cost $10 per ticket to pay out almost 99% of winnings on winners of less than $1k.
 
2017-09-13 06:33:14 PM  

gopher321: Apropos of nothing, what's that disgusting material they put on scratch-off tickets anyway? That stuff that looks like you just dug it out from under your fingernails?


You're going to be digging it out from under your fingernails, anyway, so it might as well look like that.
 
2017-09-13 09:44:53 PM  

semiotix: Every convenience store in America has 50 bricks of these pieces of cardboard lying around. Every one of those bricks has a ticket in it worth at least a month's wages for the drones who sell them and are left largely unsupervised all night. (source: was drone)

The fact that there isn't massive, rampant, industry-killing tampering with the physical ticket at the point of sale means that either the ticket itself is some kind of futuristic miracle technology, or we are suffering from a crippling nationwide shortage of imagination and drive. And I don't think scratch-ems are futuristic miracle technology.

That's why today I'm announcing the Semiotix Resourcefulness Prize, a $50,000 award to be given to the first successfully demonstrated technology that can flawlessly repair or replace the scratch-off material on tickets using only substances found inside a typical 7-11.

/prize payable a few weeks after I get my old Kwik-E-Mart job back


A screenplay of this could likely become a major motion picture with the right backing and the proper star attached to it.
 
2017-09-14 05:33:38 AM  
The article doesn't take into account how much chronic gamblers spend.  We had a lady in a personal injury lawsuit who claimed to be disabled, broke, sleeping on friends' couches.  The defendants heard she was a gambler and subpoenaed her casino records. During about two and a half years she put more than a million dollars into slot machines. It was a full time job. She was broke but she wasn't disabled. Some days she would win as much as eight or nine thousand dollars, which she would systematically lose.

And some folks are cheating.
 
2017-09-14 06:33:15 AM  
I worked in a place where people got fired for this and they banned employees from selling tickets.  Basically, what I was told is that in each brick, you are guaranteed to have X amount of payout.  It might be more, but not less.  The people selling the tickets would keep track of the winning tickets sold.  The minute it got to break even where if they bought the rest of the stack they would make as much as they put in, they bought the rest of the stack.  They at least broke even and sometimes walked away with a nice little payday.  alparently one of them told the wrong person and heads started rolling.

We also DID have people that would stop in every night and just buy stack after stack of tickets.  At the end, they would always refer to the $50 they "won" without mentioning that they dropped $75 for tickets.  They almost never cashed out, either.  Win? Great, give me more tickets.
 
2017-09-14 08:07:22 AM  
You can tell if a scratch ticket is a winner or not by its serial number.  Which is why they hide the serial numbers from the public.  Since serial numbers are not printed in order, you can estimate where the winner is in the stack by knowing the serial number on top.  All you have to do is be really good at math, and find a clerk who will read you the numbers and sell you tickets out of order.  This breaks the rules, but since we are talking aboit minimum wage workers the bar is not too high on finding them.
 
2017-09-14 02:00:51 PM  
Well, this sort of thing happens when you breed for luck.
 
2017-09-14 04:53:01 PM  
"And they just bury their heads because their revenues are at an all-time high."

Youdon'tsay?.jpg

I campaigned against the lottery way back when it came to Tennessee. It's not, nor should it be, a function of the government, and - as pointed out in TFA - as long as $$$ keeps rolling in, they'll ignore any corruption and negative impact on society. And that's even before what it does to education funding and tuition rates.

/I don't gamble myself
//but I don't mind if you do
///3 slashies FTW
 
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