Monday, February 13, 2012

Keeping tabs with online poker regulation

I’ve been keeping close tabs on the various discussions of federal regulation and intrastate regulation of online poker, and there has been plenty of chatter taking place in recent weeks.

As the author of this article points out, state legislatures are now going into session so there should be plenty of debate on the merits of online poker in the coming months. Hopefully, we can get somewhere on the issue.

Intrastate poker is no good for me as a player (as I said before, you can forget about any online poker in Alabama anytime soon – although we had plenty of “bingo” machines across the state in recent years before the governor’s office shut them down). However, intrastate poker could provide plenty of opportunities for me as a writer, perhaps through blogging about the games for the companies that operates the games or by writing weekly newspaper columns for publications in the states in which the games are held. Truly, there could be lots of opportunities if I hunt hard enough.

I take exception with the author’s comment that 15 million Americans “illegally play poker online” every day. In fact, zero Americans do so, because it’s not illegal for us to log on and play. I think the author is trying to emphasize his overall point by writing false statements. The point he is trying to make is plenty valid without resorting to these tactics.

The best point he makes is this:

The argument that this is an expansion of gaming and somehow corrupting the moral fiber of the nation is as old as the Wishbone offense. It is no longer relevant, with 48 of 50 states having some sort of gaming and, 43 states having more than three types of legalized gambling. With millions playing online in their living rooms or offices without any controls, wouldn’t it be in the best interest of law enforcement and financial regulations to manage this sub-culture of illegal activity?

Indeed. Indeed.