Tuesday October 4, 2011 : INDUSTRY CHIEFS DISCUSS ONLINE GAMBLING
 
G2E panel particularly interested in online poker
 
The first of the special panel discussions devoted to online gambling at this year's G2E expo and conference in Las Vegas took place Monday, examining the need for more political education on internet gambling, the benefits of regulation, excluding criminal influences, and fair taxation as industry execs got to grips with the impending reality of legalised online poker.
 
The discussions indicated that delegates are aware of the recently formed Fair Play USA action body and hope it will play an effective role in increasing awareness of the practical realities and advanced technologies of internet gambling, dispelling some of the political myths that have evolved in previous years.
 
Caesars Entertainment communication chief, Jan Jones, said it was important to emphasise the effective safeguards now possible relating to internet gaming, and opined that legalised online poker at the federal level was a definite possibility in the United States, something her company has long supported.
 
Jones described current political legalization initiatives but could not give a timeframe for legalization.
 
Dan Walsh, a respected and experienced legal expert on internet gambling expanded on the identification techniques now possible to exclude problem and underaged gamblers from the online environment.
 
The consensus on taxation appeared to be that taxes should not be levied on deposits, but on withdrawals, and concerns were expressed that state or federal governments desperate for cash would overtax initially and in the future, killing the goose that lays the golden egg.
 
The ‘state or federal regulation’ argument inevitably surfaced, with diverse opinions on the issue splitting perspectives and preferences.
 
Major industry bodies like the American Gaming Association favour a federal solution, but some delegates emphasised the need for the rights of individual states to be respected by the inclusion of a choice to allow intrastate online gambling or not.