Tasmania Declares War on Pokies

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Thursday 14 December 2017 3:15 pm


The Tasmanian Labor Party has a pretty ambitious goal in its war on gambling; remove all pokies from most public places in the Australian state by the year 2023. The announcement from the party, made earlier this week, marks a major escalation in the ongoing war on gambling that’s been picking up steam over the last year.

Representatives of the Tasmanian Labor Party announced their plan, which would impact about 2,300 pokies across the state, as part of broader effort to clamp down on what they see as out of control gambling and problem gambling. Labor leader Rebecca White did not mince words when describing the impact of the machines saying:

They affect an individual’s health, their family, relationships and work. For every person who is harmed by their own gambling, seven other people are affected.

White and her Labor colleagues also took advantage of the announcement to throw a little shade at their political enemies by also mentioning that:

The Liberals are not willing to make this decision, which is the right one for the economy and the right decision for Tasmanians.

Under the plan proposed by the Labor Party, about 2,300 Tasmanian pokies would be out of commission by 2023. To help ease the transition for businesses that would be impacted by the loss of pokie revenue, the party proposed a $ 55 million package of incentives and programs. This package includes money to help businesses come up with alternative revenue models and would offer consultants to help with the transition away from gambling.

While the move certainly won’t be popular with businesses that rely on pokie revenue, Labor Party officials say that 80 percent of Tasmanians support the move.

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Feds Bust Massive US Football Pick ‘Em

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Tuesday 12 December 2017 3:16 pm

Two New York state men are looking at a mountain of legal troubles after their massive football pick ‘em was shut down by the US Department of Justice last week for promoting illegal gambling.

Ron Kronengold and Mike Bernstein are the organizers of a long-running, and pretty massive, football pick ‘em site called, “Ron & Mike’s Football Pool.” The site featured a number of pools in the survivor format, wherein players can only choose a team once per season and are eliminated completely if they miss a single pick.

According to a report on ESPN.com, the site has been around for at least eight years; hosted thousands of players; and features a prize pool of nearly $ 2.5 million (USD).

None of this would really be a problem for Kronengold and Bernstein save one little, the Feds believe that they were skimming roughly ten percent of the prize money for their own use. Under New York State and Federal law, that moves the football pick ‘em from a friendly wager between friends to a serious violation of the laws regarding illegal gambling.

According to ESPN.com, Kronengold and Bernstein seemed to vacillate between hiding their operation from view and bringing it into the public light. For example, while the men had no problem trademarking the term, “Ron and Mike’s Football Pool,” they also had players make out checks to the name of a non-existent mortgage company while sending those same checks to an anonymous PO box.

So far the men haven’t been formally charged, but it’s likely they’ll face charges of bookmaking and profiting from a gambling activity.

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Ladbrokes Loses Australian Advertising Battle

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Friday 8 December 2017 3:16 pm

Ladbrokes Australia is looking at paying around $ 70,000 in fines for violating New South Wales (NSW) advertising regulations after a judge rejected their appeal in the matter.

Judge Martin Blackmore upheld a lower court’s decision to fine Ladbrokes approximately $ 25,000 for violating NSW advertising standards, as well as an additional $ 38,000 in court costs and legal fees in the matter.

Under NSW law, gaming operators such as Ladbrokes are strictly prohibited from inducing players to gamble and/or open an account for wagering. In the layman’s eyes, this law would seemingly prohibit all forms of advertising, but that’s not a realistic option for operators who need to continuously promote their goods and services through promotions such as deposit bonuses. That leaves them treading a fine line between legitimate promotions and incurring the wrath of local gaming regulators.

For NSW-facing operators, this challenge becomes particularly difficult as NSW is one of Australia’s least-gambling friendly states. Over the years, it’s been home to stringent regulation and rather vocal anti-gambling faction which includes local lawmakers.

To make matters even more challenging, after the decision announced Ladbrokes was chided by Sean Goodchild, director of compliance operations at the Liquor and Gaming NSW who said that the company was not doing enough to, “…minimize the possible negative effects of gambling on vulnerable individuals,” according to a report on CalvinAyre.com.

Representatives of the The Liquor and Gaming NSW reiterated their warning that they are watching gambling operators quite closely and will continue issuing fines for advertisements that violate local standards.

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UKGC Comes Down on Broadway Gaming for Misleading Bonus Offer

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Wednesday 6 December 2017 3:14 pm


Deposit bonus offers have long been a mainstay of marketing operations for online gambling operators worldwide. But while these offers look great on paper, most players know that actually earning their promised bonus can be incredibly difficult or even impossible.

It’s an issue that’s not currently sitting well with the regulators at the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) who earlier this week issued a £100,000 penalty to Broadway Gaming for promoting a misleading bonus offer to its UK customers.

At issue is an advertisement that ran in June of 2016 that gave players the chance to, “Deposit £10. Play £35.” While most experienced players know that this sort of offer is always mired in terms and conditions, some apparently were not wise to this fact. And that’s where the UKGC comes into the picture.

By advertising the bonus offer without clearly stating the terms and conditions that went along with it, the UKGC said that Broadway Gaming had violated the UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising and Direct & Promotional Marketing (CAP Code). This is the code that governs advertising by UK-facing gaming operators.

Officials at Broadway Gaming acknowledged their error and agreed to pull the advertisement from the UK advertising space and from their gaming affiliate networks. The company also agreed to pay a £100,000 fine. Representatives for the company have also stated they will be working closely with the UKGC in the future to insure that their advertising and marketing materials are compliant with UK laws and regulations.

The UKGC had promised that it would be cracking down on bonus offers and this action against Broadway Gaming is proof that they should be taken at their word.

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US Senators Threaten to Revive Long Dead RAWA

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Saturday 2 December 2017 3:14 pm

Two US senators are so outraged over the recent legalization of online gambling in Pennsylvania that they’re threatening to revive the long dead Restoration of America’s Wire Act (RAWA). It’s a move that could both set off a major battle over states rights and/or crush the US online gambling business.

RAWA’s resurrection came earlier this week when senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) sent a letter to the Department of Justice investigate online gambling at the state level and reverse its decision to not enforce key elements of the 1961 Wire Act.

The letter itself outlined some common arguments against online gambling that are both dated and inaccurate and was quickly torn apart by gaming sites such as Calvinayre.com and OnlinePokerReport.com. Writers at both sites correctly pointed out a number of factual errors in the letter, starting with the fact that the senators suggested that the 1961 Act was written with the intention of stamping out online gambling. Online gambling would not, in fact, even exist for more than three decades after the Act was written.

The senators also suggested that the spread of regulated online would bring an influx of organized crime and gambling addiction and that only RAWA could stop it. Their claim was presented without any evidence, although a study of the impact of online gambling in New Jersey would certainly provide hard data to back up or, more likely, disprove their claims.

While the senators are happy to rage against online gambling, their chances of pushing RAWA through Congress seem quite slim. The bill never gained much traction during more functional eras of US politics and seems unlikely to grasp a foothold in a time when lawmakers are struggling to pass bills of any kind.

Regardless of whether this current RAWA revival succeeds or not, it stands as a stark warning that regardless of the gains made by the online gambling industry in the US, there are always those powerful folks who want to see the entire industry eliminated.

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ASA Pulls Paddy Power Ad for Promoting Workplace Gambling

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Thursday 30 November 2017 3:15 pm

Paddy Power is under fire from the UK Advertising Standards Bureau (ASA) for running an advertisement that, supposedly, promotes workplace gambling. It’s just the latest in a long series of dust-ups between the UK-facing operator and the stiff upper lips who oversee how the gambling industry advertises itself.

The advertisement at issue is titled, “Pappa Loves Mambo” and features a security guard playing Paddy Power online slots while singing lyrics like, “…Watching ‘em gamble from a sneaky camera angle. Yeah, look at ‘em play on it; spinning away on it, they’re rubbing my face in it now. Still I can’t grumble. I’ll have a cheeky little dabble. Yeah I’ll have a spin on it, when I’m on break, the daily jacpot’s looking great now.” The song is sung to the tune of Perry Como’s classic song, “Poppa Loves Mambo.”

This was entirely too much for two, unnamed, UK residents who complained to the board that the advertisement seemed to suggest that gambling is an acceptable workplace activity.

Paddy Power officials, who are certainly used to dealing the good folks at the ASA, defended the ad by saying that workplace presented in advertisement was actually a casino. Under UK advertising guidelines, which do prohibit depictions of workplace gambling, there is an exception made when the activity takes place on the premises of a licensed gaming establishment.

Unfortunately, the ASA wasn’t buying that argument one bit and pointed out that even though the fictional guard was working in a fictional casino, he wasn’t actually on break. Because of that, the ad was deemed to be, “socially irresponsible,” and was pulled from the airwaves.

Getting spanked by the ASA is a regular part of life at Paddy Power, where cheeky ads are a standard occurrence and it doesn’t appear that the esteemed operator will be changing its advertising and PR strategy anytime soon.

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Virtual Sports Betting Products Now Available in New Jersey

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Tuesday 28 November 2017 3:53 pm

New Jersey sports betting enthusiasts who can’t wait for the Supreme Court to make up its mind about regulated sports betting now have an alternative – virtual sports betting. Late last week, PlaySugarHouse.com launched a suite of virtual sports betting products that include horse and greyhound racing; soccer; and motorsports that are available to the New Jersey online gaming market.

Virtual sports betting offers simulated electronic sporting events with outcomes that are predetermined by algorithms. Bettors are presented with statistics and other information about the electronic teams and animals in the events that can be used to make their wagers. Despite this tip of the hat to sports information, virtual sports betting is much more like slot machines than traditional sports betting.

That said, virtual sports betting products are proving to be very popular in Europe, where they generate about a third of the revenue that traditional sports betting generates.

In a statement to the media on PR Newswire, Richard Schwartz, President of Rush Street Interactive (which operates PlaySugarHouse.com), described the value he thinks virtual sports betting will bring to the New Jersey gambling market saying:

We are excited to lead the way in bringing online Virtual Sportsbetting to the United States with our debut in New Jersey. Adding Inspired’s Virtual Sportsbetting events to our mix of online games is another example of how PlaySugarHouse.com offers its players a wide range of the most entertaining and innovative games in the industry!

Whether or not New Jersey sports bettors, who aren’t exactly known as big soccer fans and have been clamoring for real sports betting for years, will warm up to the products is a question that will be answered in the months ahead.

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FanDuel CEO and Co-Founder Moving on to Greener Pastures

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Sunday 26 November 2017 3:14 pm

FanDuel CEO Nigel Eccles is leaving the company almost eight years after he helped to found it and put daily fantasy sports on the worldwide gaming radar. Eccles’ exit comes at a time when the controversial company is both mired in legal battles and, according their own reports, is nearing its first profitable quarter.

Word of Eccles’ departure was broken late Monday night by ESPN.com and came as something of a surprise to observers of the daily fantasy sports industry.

Details concerning the reasons for Eccles’ departure were not readily available and a statement by the company said only that he was looking to, “focus on his next venture.” What that venture involves is anybody’s guess, though some in the gaming media speculated that he would take his talents to the booming e-sports business.

Eccles’ position is currently being filled by Matt King, who served as the company’s Chief Financial Officer from 2014-2016. In his own statement, Eccles had kind words for King saying:

With his strategic vision, range of experiences, and broad skill set, I cannot imagine a better individual to steer FanDuel forward. With tremendous legislative strides in the past two years and the business moving into profitability in (Quarter 4), FanDuel is in a great position.

Profitable or not, anyone at the helm of FanDuel is looking at some pretty big challenges. In particular, the company is fighting for its life across the country as it attempts to convince lawmakers that daily fantasy sports should not be considered a form of gambling.

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Australian Regulators Taking a Closer Look at Loot Boxes as Gambling

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Friday 24 November 2017 3:15 pm

Lawmakers and gaming regulators across the planet are grappling with a new controversy that definitely wasn’t on their radars a year ago – are video game loot boxes a form of gambling? That question is on the minds of regulators in the UK and USA and, as of this week, the controversy has landed on the shores of Australia.

Currently, the epicenter of the loot box debate is in Victoria, where the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) recently branded loot boxes as a form of gambling. Interestingly enough, the Victorian war on loot boxes began after Jarrod Wolfe, a strategic analyst in the Victorian regulators’ compliance division read Reddit post about the controversy surrounding loot boxes in the video game Star Wars Battlefront II, according to a report on CalvinAyre.com.

For those are not current with the video gaming world, Star Wars Battlefront II is the epicenter of the loot box debate after video game players realized that leveling up in the game wasn’t really possible without spending massive amounts of real cash on in-game transactions to purchase loot boxes. But even spending loads of cash on loot boxes still doesn’t guarantee a positive outcome, and that’s what concerns regulators like Wolfe.

In a statement the Australian press he described the practice as follows:

The focus of my concerns currently is on the more predatory aspects related to ‘pay to win’. Skins, skins betting and virtual currencies are certainly a peripheral consideration. However, the idea that (genuine) progression in a game could be reliant on the outcome of a random number generator is at odds with responsible gambling and the objectives of our acts. More importantly the normalization of gambling vernacular and mechanics targeted at vulnerable persons (minors), is not just morally reprehensible, but is also legally questionable.

Though Wolfe acknowledged that fighting loot boxes at the regulatory level could prove difficult, the writing is clearly on the wall. The debate over whether or not loot boxes constitute gambling is not going anywhere, anytime soon.

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UK Gaming Regulators Clamping Down on Online Gambling Operators

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Wednesday 22 November 2017 3:15 pm

Gaming regulators in the UK have a message for the online gambling industry and it’s not one that most operators are going to want to hear. In two separate instances over the past week, regulators have made it clear that a new wave of regulation is coming and that common industry practices like deposit bonuses will be facing increased scrutiny.

At a conference in Birmingham earlier this week, UK Gambling Commission chief Bill Moyes gave the gathered representatives of the online gambling industry a clear warning about their future. He said, in no uncertain terms, that their free ride was over and that, “…public support for gambling is beginning to decline,” according to a report on CalvinAyre.com.

Moyes went on to warn the gathered mass that the industry has a choice to make, they can either shape up and make compliance a bigger part of their business, or face increased scrutiny from regulators. No one operator was singled out in Moyes’ remarks, but he made it clear that the £10 million in fines the agency doled out last year could be just the tip of the iceberg.

Other officials from the UKGC echoed Moyes’ words and made it very clear that they’re expecting online gambling operators to tighten up their regulatory game or get hit with an iron fist of regulatory action.

Also speaking at the event was George Lusty, project director at the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). In his address, Lusty made it very clear that his agency will continue taking a very hard look at how online gambling operators treat their customers. In particular, the CMA is looking at deposit bonuses that can’t be earned without large amounts of play; standard practices involving withdrawals; and the details buried in operators’ terms and conditions.

What Moyes and Lusty’s inquiries will yield is anyone’s guess but this much is clear, UK-facing online gambling operators can expect increased scrutiny from regulatory agencies in the months ahead.

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