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US newspaper says land casino attitudes may be softening
The New York Times kept the legalisation of online gambling front-and-centre over the weekend with a generally positive article on the current state of play in the United States.
Author Bradley Bower of Bloomberg News opined: “Many of the country’s largest casinos, long opposed to gambling games like poker on the Internet, are now having second thoughts” before going on to examine the latest developments, noting that internet gambling is enjoyed by millions of Americans.
He reports that the American Gaming Association has accepted that online gambling could be regulated, and that it is still working on “…a proposal that would ask Congress to legalise at least some form of online gambling.”
However, the support of individual members of the AGA remains mixed, ranging from strong support by Harrah’s to fears of increased competition by Wynn Resorts, and the organisation is currently maintaining a neutral position on the issue.
However, the Wynn position may be moderating suggests Bower, noting that most recently the company has said that it monitors any legislative activity, federal or state, that pertains to its industry. “We make judgments after such legislation is passed,” a statement asserted.
Gambling industry analyst, Sebastian Sinclair, told the author a change of heart among casino operators like Wynn Resorts should not be surprising, given the stakes involved.
“When any industry is confronted with something of this nature, a game changer that is a paradigm shift, the first reaction is to circle the wagons to protect your business,” Sinclair observed. “But then, that changes over time.”
The author of the article quotes AGA chief executive, Frank J. Fahrenkopf Jr., in an interview by phone, as saying that the association had not settled on the details of its proposed approach to legalisation, including how the proceeds from Internet gambling would be taxed. “We have been working on something,” he said, “and continue to work on it.”
Bower gives a summary of the current status of the Frank legalisation bill, which has passed committee but has not yet reached the House floor . He also takes a look at moves in California, New Jersey and Florida and quotes Mark Balestra of BolaVerde Consulting, who predicts that the flurry of activity will continue.
Powerful new lobbying forces have been unleashed by the US legalisation debate, among them groups that include lotteries, racetracks and Indian tribes, all with plans designed to secure a valuable slice of the monetary pie.
Surprisingly, Bower did not seem aware of the recent unequivocal statement from Senator Harry Reid’s office that the House Majority Leader does not support Frank’s legalisation proposal. Instead he refers to previous indications that the senator may be warming to the idea.
“A spokesman for Mr. Reid said he was still reviewing the Internet issue and had not decided,” the author claims, but he is not specific on when that statement was made and whether it superceded negative assertions earlier this month by Reid staffers.
Danske Spil Bingo Moves to Microgaming -
The national lottery of Denmark, Danske Spil, is live on the Microgaming Bingo Network. Danske Spil, the Danish national lottery, is live on the Microgaming Bingo Network following a change to its licence conditions.
Quickfire live on Strendus -
Quickfire powered by Microgaming is extending its reach in the LatAm region with the signing of Strendus. Strendus is the online division of Logrand Entertainment Group. The group comprises several companies that operate gaming and entertainment establishments in Mexico, running 14 land-based casinos in total.
Quickfire content live on BetatHome -
Online gaming and sports betting company bet-at-home was founded in 1999. Today the company has 4.8 million registered customers around the world, offering sports betting, casino, live casino, Vegas games, poker and virtual sports.
Microgaming has donated £30,000 between four charities -
Gift of Giving provides Microgamingís customers the opportunity to vote for one of several charities in their region. In lieu of Christmas gifts, £30,000 is split equally between four global regions: Isle of Man, UK and Europe, Africa, and Rest of the World.
Entertainment Betting Odds: 90th Academy Awards -
The Shape of Water leads Sundayís 90th Academy Awards (8 PM ET, ABC) with 13 Oscar nominations, but when it comes to Best Picture, this highly-acclaimed film is a +140 second-favorite behind Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at Ė115.
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