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Gaming Terms Used In The Lottery

A glossary of some of the terms you may hear when playing the lottery

In every sector of business and industry you will find terms that are used in-house that are confusing to those who are not privy to the inside workings. Some business terms might not even make any sense at all, and may seem a little “made up.” However, once you know the terms you can understand what they mean to the insiders. So here are some terms used in the lottery industry that will help you to become an insider yourself.

Lottery terms glossary

Activated Pack: A pack of instant tickets that has been assigned to a retailer.

Advertised Jackpot: The minimum prize amount the lottery estimates it will pay to the winner of a specific draw

Aged Pack: A pack of instant tickets at a retail location that the retailer has had for a specified period of time.

Annuity: Yearly payments made to a prize winner over time, such as 20 years, to pay out the winning prize.

Ball Draw Machine: A domed device with a fan that blows around a set of numbered balls, and then randomly lets the balls drop into a try to determine the winning numbers for a specific game.

Bonus Number:When a number is drawn in addition to regularly drawn numbers, it’s known as the bonus number.

Book: A set of instant lottery tickets.

Cancelled Ticket: A terminal-printed ticket which is voided after it has been generated by a retailer terminal.

Cash-for-Life Game: A lottery game which offers a set prize payment to be made in instalments for the rest of the winner’s life.
Central Computer: The computer that handles all gaming and validation activity for the lottery, including communications with all the lottery terminals in retail locations.

Claims Centre: A location where a player can have tickets validated and collect prize amounts which exceed those payable by a retailer.

Claim Form: An official lottery form filled out by a player when claiming a prize of at least a specified value at the lottery

Claims Process: The procedure and/or paperwork involved in awarding a prize to a player.

Draw Certification: A process in which draws are verified. Official records are kept of each draw and result, overseen buy an independent operator.

Estimated Jackpot: The jackpot amount estimated to be paid out for a draw based on ticket sales, and the value could fluctuate depending on the amount of ticket sales.

Fixed Jackpot: A non-progressive jackpot.

Fixed Payouts: The number and amounts of prizes established for a game, regardless of how many tickets are sold.

Game End: The official date, determined by the lottery, that an instant game has ended. Prizes must then be redeemed within the time period required by the lottery.

Game Matrix: Configuration of the amount of numbers needed to be matched out of a certain amount of numbers, such as 6/49 or 7/50 games.

Instant Game (Scratch Tickets): A lottery ticket in which a player scratches a latex coating from one of more play areas to determine if a prize has won.

Interprovincial Lottery: A consortium of the five lottery organizations which represent all Canadian provinces (Atlantic Lottery, British Columbia Lottery Corp., Loto-Quebec, Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp., and the Western Canada Lottery Corp.), participating individually in various multi-jurisdictional lottery games.

Jackpot: The top prize in any game.

Lottery Beneficiaries: The designated recipients of lottery profits such as charities, schools, community service agencies, etc.

Lottery Commission: The members of a board who have oversight of the entire lottery organization. The Commission typically is selected by the governor of the state.

Lump Sum: A single prize payment.

Multi-Jurisdiction Lottery: Lottery games that are offered in more than one gaming jurisdiction. Examples include Powerball, Mega Millions, Lotto 6/49 and Lotto Max.
North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries (NASPL): A non-profit professional association representing all government-sanctioned lotteries in the United States, Canada, Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

Play Slip (Bet Slip): A machine-readable paper form used by players to choose their lottery numbers. A retailer can insert the play slip into a reader and the lottery terminal will generate a lottery ticket for a draw or terminal-based game.

Progressive Jackpot: A jackpot in which the value increases when there is no winning ticket for that draw.
Random Number Generator (RNG): A tightly secure computer program that randomly generates the numbers for a draw.

Responsible Gambling: A program in which lottery operators provide information and resources about responsible gambling and gambling addiction to players.

Retailer: An entity authorized and licensed by a lottery to sell lottery tickets.

Retailer Commission: The amount paid to a lottery retailer by the lottery in return for selling lottery tickets; the commission is based on the retailer’s sales, and in many cases, cashing of winning tickets.

Subscription: A paid-in-advance program in which a player purchases a specified number of lottery tickets to be drawn over a specified time period. Subscriptions may be offered to players in several ways, including via the internet where allowed by law.

Terminal: An electronic device used for entering plays and printing tickets for lottery games such as lotto and other numbers games and for cashing lottery tickets. Lottery terminals also have administrative features for retailers.

Ticket Stock: Special paper used for printing tickets for terminal-based lottery games at lottery terminals.

Validation: The process at a lottery retailer or gaming centre to validate a ticket presented as a winner.

Winner Awareness: Making public actual lottery winners for the purposes of promoting ticket sales.