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MORE CRITICISM OF 60 MINUTES POKER PROGRAM
The Toronto Sun newspaper has joined the chorus of criticism mounting against claims in the recent 60 Minutes television program that Internet gambling is illegal in the United States and Canada.
Toronto Sun writer Chris Tessaro takes the program to task in an editorial this week, commenting that the first thing that jumped out for him in the 60 Minutes program was "...a piece of mis-information by the 60 Minutes people. Now, I know that the show prides itself on its veracity, and I’m not sure how this one slipped past their fact checkers, but the piece stated several times that the online poker industry is ‘illegal’.
"This, in fact, is completely misleading," Tessaro points out. "Online poker is not now, nor has it ever been, illegal.
Since the UIGEA (Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act) was passed in the United States, it is deemed illegal to transfer funds from a financial institution in the U.S. to an internet gambling site.
"This hardly makes poker illegal. In fact, it only makes it illegal for banks to permit transfers of funds onto poker sites. If you can get your money online in some other way, then you’re more than welcome to legally play online poker in the U.S. Canada has no such provisions, so there is nothing illegal in our country to be concerned with at all."
The writer goes on to lament the lack of online poker regulation, commenting that "...this lack of regulation is the very thing that allowed the Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet scandals to occur. With no one to answer to investigation or enquiry, there is virtually no accountability for misbehaviour, and it’s something that would be a benefit to players around the world."
Whilst the Kahnawake Gaming Commission would argue his point, and reiterate their recent claims that they did their regulatory job, the point that players largely benefit from the protection of regulation is well made.
Tessaro commented that the news piece also didn’t mention some of the key players in the scandals, and he names Absolute Poker’s former CEO Scott Toms, saying "....who many believe was behind the actual cheating. Perhaps this is due to an inability to garner enough hard evidence to mention his name, but that didn’t stop the show from (rightfully) throwing Ultimate Bet owner Russ Hamilton under the bus. Hamilton was involved in this fiasco right up to his not inconsiderable waist, and it was good to see the reporters drag him into the floodlights."
The article concludes with the observation that panel interviews with a number of poker personalities were axed from the show, and expresses the hope that these might at some stage come to light.
The writer ends with a question most of us have asked ourselves: "So, the question on everyone’s mind is a simple one: was the 60 Minutes segment good or bad for poker? The jury is still out, but the answer really seems to be ... neither. The piece illuminated an ugly piece of poker news, but it really didn’t say too much about the industry as a whole. They did point out that, without regulation, there is nothing to stop this from happening again. Perhaps their piece will drive a movement towards safeguarding players with some simple regulation."
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Marks and Spencer store Manager steals to Gamblie Online -
The Cambridge News reports that a 28-year-old manager of a Marks and Spencer store, Martin Trenor, has been jailed for three years for stealing GBP 254,538.11 in shop takings over the course of a year and spending it almost immediately at online gambling websites.
Chinese Gambling crackdown could damage high roller revenue -
Fast-moving events this week have seen Australian media reports quoting hundreds of millions of dollars wagered by Chinese high rollers in Aussie land casinos, offset to some extent by Crown claims that this whale gambler" demographic generates only 12 percent of turnover.
EvenBet Open Face Chinese Poker -
Open Face Chinese Poker online games provider EvenBet has reported that its Open Face Chinese Poker product is gaining traction with games recently integrated for desktop action at the Malta-licensed operational site Poker Grant.
2016 EPT Malta -
The European Poker Tour is off to a good start in Malta, with German pro Dietrich Fast claiming a well-earned Euro 174,000 main prize in the Euro 10,000 buy-in Single-Entry Rebuy event.
Team Hot Launches -
#teamhot The Philippines licensed and GGNetwork-powered online poker operator Natural8 has announced the appointment to its "Team Hot" professional player line-up of Asian poker aces Kitty Kuo, Xuan Liu and Dong Kim.
Netent Q3-2016 Earnings Report -
#netent The UK continues to be an important growth driver but the weaker pound had an estimated negative effect of about three percentage points on revenue growth compared to the same quarter last year.
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