October 5, 2006

We're not the Only Ones Sayin It

Well, we said that Online gambling was really not going anywhere, that the money would just move underground. And it looks like we're not the only ones saying it.

Casino News had this to say on the issue:

It's a good bet that online gamblers will still be able to play Texas Hold 'Em or wager on the Carolina Panthers even if Congress succeeds in curtailing how players pay foreign Web casinos, gaming experts said Monday.

"They will figure out new ways to send money back and forth," said Kenneth Weitzner, who runs the online gambling news Web site eog.com. "They have always been one step ahead of the law. ... This is unenforceable. It's mostly a feel-good bill."

The Casino News also had a story about how MSNBC was holding a poll about wether Online gambling should be illegal or not. You can see that article, vote yourself, and see the results here. When we looked, with about 3500 responses, it was 93% saying it should be legal, and 4% saying illegal. Shocking.

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October 4, 2006

More on the Reprecussions of the US ban on Online Gambling

Its been a couple of days now since the bomb was dropped on US online gambling. There are all sorts of stories floating about that indicate that the whole online gambling industry is reeling. One of the most telling bits we found was this from Gambling Planet

Internet gambling companies face a wave of consolidation in the wake of the US clampdown on online gaming, which could see American casinos and gambling businesses swooping for bargains in the sector, the heads of two of the biggest online gambling sites said on Monday.

Mitch Garber, chief executive of PartyGaming, and Gigi Levy, who takes over as chief of 888 Holdings this year, made their predictions as the sector felt the impact of the bill passed in the Senate on Friday making it illegal for banks and credit card companies to process online gaming payments from the US.

Investors wiped $7bn off the market value of what at the start of trading was an industry worth $12bn, as heavyweight internet gambling companies said they would suspend indefinitely their US operations.

Now thats a massive chunk of revenue gone. We have to believe that this money will not just vanish, but rather it will go underground. There will be a much seedier and less trustworthy structure that will fill in the vacuum left behind by these big pullouts.

As you can see in this NYTimes peice, the reason all of these mergers and acquisitions are possible, is because that law sent stocks falling and falling and falling for any companies involved with online gambling.

In addition MSNBC even has a story that indicated that there may be loopholes that render the act innefective in the end anyway!

Unlike the version that passed the House earlier this year, the approved legislation does not explicitly outlaw betting on online casino-style games, such as poker and blackjack. The bill does bar financial institutions from accepting "illegal" bets, leaving the question unanswered as to whether some forms of online gambling are permitted. To date, sports betting is one of the only forms of gambling explicitly outlawed in the act.

What a mess!

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October 2, 2006

No More Online Gambling in the US?


Well, it looks like the nuclear option has hit. Online gambling will no longer be legal in the US. It is a sad day for gaming Americans. This new law, "the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006", will have sever impacts on the gaming companies here in the US, and abroad, as all that revenue will either vanish, or go underground.

First off, it all went down under the guise of ammendments to a port security bill, and of course it happens just as congress is heading home for final campaigning for the mid terms. Slimy.

Yahoo News Had this report today:

Online gambling firms faced their biggest-ever crisis on Monday after U.S. Congress passed legislation to end Internet gaming there, threatening jobs and wiping 3.5 billion pounds ($6.5 billion) off company values.

Britain's PartyGaming Plc, operator of leading Internet poker site PartyPoker.com, and rivals Sportingbet and 888 Plc said they would likely pull out of the United States, their biggest source of revenue.

"This development is a significant setback for our company, our shareholders, our players and our industry," PartyGaming Chief Executive Mitch Garber said.

The House of Representatives and Senate unexpectedly approved a bill early on Saturday that would make it illegal for banks and credit-card companies to make payments to online gambling sites.

Read on for more from around the News Wires.

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September Wrap Up

Another busy month here at the Casino Snob, and the time has come to do the September Wrap Up, so warm up some apple cider, and in this early October, let's remenice about the September just past.

On the gaming scene, the first thing we did is take an in depth look at BlackJack with another in our "all about" series. We covered the basics of the game, as well as a few products that we though could enhance your black jack experience.

We also took a look at some sweet products for your home casino with the high quality Kem Cards and your very own slot machine.

In addition, we reported on our happy experiences with the Winning Bid slot machine we found at Mohegan Sun.

In the Casino Style section, as always, we had a slew of Casino Cocktail Fridays covering such lovelies as The Gimlet, the Cosmopolitan, the Ace of Spades, Dumpster Juice, and the Campari and Soda.

We also pointed out the one hundred percent pure style of Jack Colton.

Finally on the news front, we pointed out many interesting stories. Among our favorites were the Roulette Device, the electronic poker table, and the money train.

We hope you found those treats interesting, and we'll do our best not to trick you as we enter October, and the heart of Fall.

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August 31, 2006

August Wrap-Up

Well another month has gone by, and its time to look back at August on the Casino Snob.

In the casino entertainment world we took a closer look at Cirque du Soleil and their odd blend of wonder and performance. We also let folks in on the hilarious and amazing duo of Penn & Teller, and how they can catch them perform in Vegas

In the Casino and Gaming section, we took some time to check out Baccarat, that high-brow game thats so simple even a secret agent can play it while on duty. We also spent some time with the Ponies at Rockingham Park. We even "touched down" on the sports bet scene when you have the inkling to bet on the NFL.

Texas Hold'em Took some of our attention, as we looked at a bunch of books that promised to help you win at the tables. And while technically It was back in July, we can't help but mention our post on craps, mainly because we just love the game that much.

In the Cuisine area, we kicked off Casino Cocktail Friday in style. Thats one series we just KNOW we are going to enjoy posting on for ages to come :)

All the while, the news ever flows onward, we did our best to give you the highlights of the Casino world. A look back at the gulf coast a year after Katrina, the talk about the largest casino in the world, and of course the current debate of the legality of Online Gaming.

Yes-sir-ee its been a good month here at Casino Snob, and we're glad to have you here with us! We hope you enjoyed you're summer, and now we're looking forward to Fall, and to all the casino-y goodness that awaits us!

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August 7, 2006

The Legal Ambiguity of Online Gambling

There is a lot of ambiguity today about online gambling. And while that ambiguity may be cleared up for everyone real soon, the current state ofthe industry is grey grey grey.

A recent wired article takes a look at the gaming industry, to try and decipher wether its ok, or not ok, to win those poker tournaments online.

The House bill that would ban internet gambling -- except for horse race betting and state lotteries -- is an attempt to close a perceived loophole in the 1961 Wire Act, one of a series of laws meant to crack down on racketeering.

Similar legislation failed in the House in 2000, but many blame that on the efforts of disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who is accused of spending lavishly to get the bill killed on behalf of an online lottery company.

The Wire Act explicitly forbids businesses from using a wire communication facility to assist in placing bets on "any sporting event or contest." But the wire law doesn't cover other types of casino betting, a federal appeals court in New Orleans has ruled, leaving some doubt whether prosecutors can shut down Internet poker and other casino games.

Of course, with or without a new law from Congress, the Justice Department interprets all online gambling to be illegal. Other countries allow it, so online companies have set up operations outside the United States but with easy access to U.S. players and their computers.

"Online poker is online gambling. And online gambling, we would say, is illegal," Justice Department spokeswoman Jaclyn Lesch said.

Read the whole article at Wired

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July 19, 2006

Big Online Casino Bust in Missouri

FBI Bust
It seems that the crackdown on online casinos has begun, at least for BentonSports PLC.
ABC News has reported that a massive indictment has come down against BentonSports and its proprietors.

Internet gambling was dealt a major blow today when a federal grand jury returned a 22-count indictment against 11 people and four corporations on charges of racketeering, conspiracy and fraud, the Department of Justice announced.

Among those charged was one of the Web's most popular gambling destinations, BetonSports PLC, which owns several Internet casinos and sportsbooks, and the founder of BetonSports.com, Gary Stephen Kaplan, as well as BetonSports.com CEO David Carruthers..

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July 18, 2006

GPS Technology Promises Solution for Online Casinos

The current problem in online casinos, and their legality, revolves around local governments wanting to be able to regulate gambling, much as is done on good ole' Terra firma. Unfortunately (for some), because an online casino lets you play from anywhere, the government has no way to get its share of the revenues. Enter Global Cyber Licencing LLC, and their technology-driven solution.

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