Casino Pull-to-Refresh

Casino Pull-to-Refresh is a pattern that offers a variable reward to its users by utilizing an interaction technique through which users can “pull” an interface to reload the status of the system manually. As the user performs the swipe, there is an animated reload of the page that may or may not reveal new appealing content. The user is rewarded at random intervals, and this unpredictable nature of the reward creates excitement and anticipation, leading to addictive behavior similar to gambling. This pattern can be seen in various digital services, such as social media, news apps, and email clients.

Example: Instagram

Refreshing the home feed on Instagram requires you to pull down on the screen, which is an interaction technique present on various touch-based interfaces and targets social network users on smartphones. What makes this action different than email-checking habits or refreshing a webpage is that both the quantity (whether or not a reward is present), and also the quality of the reward (the degree to which the new social media post(s) satisfy the user), is variable. Because of this, users may be tempted to refresh compulsively, hoping to receive new content on their feeds.