Monday, April 30, 2007
Internet Gambling Updates
Representative Barney Frank hopes to override the October, 2006 legislation that (eventually -- see this January 18, 2007 post --) rendered it considerably more difficult to Americans to take part in gambling over the internet. The Frank bill would set up a licensing system similar to what Britain intends to introduce, so that operators who abide by rules designed to preclude access by kids, aid compulsive gamblers, and protect the interests of consumers, would be allowed to offer web-gambling services. Individual US states and Native American reservations that choose to make internet gambling illegal for bettors within their borders would be allowed to opt out of the system -- many states already have adopted the appropriate (inappropriate?) bans. College and professional sports leagues that would like to prevent legal internet gambling on their contests also could opt out. This opt-out provision is not enough to satisfy the NFL and other sports organizations, however -- even if sports betting remains illegal, some of them oppose the Frank bill. Could it be that they see internet gambling as a competitor within the entertainment marketplace?
Meanwhile, internet giant Yahoo is setting up its own poker room in which players risk real money -- though US residents, for the nonce, will be excluded.