Online Gambling – Is it Worth It?
Online Gambling – Is it Worth It?
Online gambling is any type of gambling done online. This includes casinos, virtual poker and online sports betting among others. The first online gambling site opened to the public, was ticketing at the Liechtenstein International Poker Festival in 1994. While many critics claimed that the facility provided by the government to protect online gamblers from fraud was largely ineffective, the fact remains that many countries have followed suit and today have online casinos. While some countries have laws preventing online gambling altogether, several other countries have very limited laws that only prohibit certain types of gambling online.
In the US, there are currently three Federal laws that regulate online gambling operations: the Internal Revenue Code, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. According to the US Federal Government, all online gambling operations must register with the Department of Justice. They are also required to create a website that displays the identity of the owner and provides personal and credit card numbers. States are allowed to enforce harsher laws against internet gambling operations based upon federal laws, but they are ultimately independent of federal laws. The states usually enforce an age of 18 years old as the legal age of online gambling, while the federal government does not impose any age requirement for actual gambling.
Because many online gambling sites offer ‘free gambling money’ to their customers (e.g. by entering ‘play money’) the laws do not always apply to these transactions. Similarly, because gambling is largely based upon chance outcomes, there is no basis for regulating how a customer odds his or her winnings nor any method for determining what those odds may be. If you gamble online you are ultimately placing your bet, whether you know it or not, and the same laws that apply offline still apply to online gambling: you are liable for anything you gamble with (e.g.
Because the nature of online gambling is somewhat unique, there is some concern among lawyers and other legal professionals about the likelihood of online gambling being considered legal. There are some jurisdictions where online gambling is illegal, and in many jurisdictions online poker is illegal outright. Despite this, there are many areas where online gambling appears to be legal, and these include some parts of the US where it is legalized, regulated and taxed. In the case of online poker and online gambling in the US, the taxation is often viewed as a form of indirect taxation on internet gambling, since a player pays taxes when he or she plays, but the taxes are generally lower than taxes on goods and services in the local area where the player goes to gamble.
Another reason why online gambling sites are able to advertise themselves as legal while at the same time running afoul of the law is easy access. Easy access means that it is easy for a user to come in contact with the online gambling sites and log into their accounts. This easy access allows a user to place bets on games, collect money from his or her winnings, transfer money from one account to another and sometimes even use the credit cards that they have on file with the site. With easy access comes access to money, and the easier it is for people to get access to funds, the more likely it is that they will engage in internet gambling. Gambling is very addictive, and people who have access to large amounts of cash may become habituated to the online gambling sites, which makes it even more difficult for them to stop when they are already addicted.
While there are not many areas in the world where internet gambling is illegal, the law does not frown upon it so much that it is viewed in a positive light by the law enforcement authorities. However, there are still many areas in the world where it is illegal to engage in online gambling, including the Caribbean island of Antigua. The Antiguan government has issued a ban on all forms of gambling on its territory, including online gaming. Many citizens of Antigua have criticized the government for this, saying that it is an effort to control the money of the citizens of Antigua. However, the Antiguan government has made it clear that the ban will not affect the ability of its citizens to engage in online gaming. In fact, it is only a place of gaming regulation and has not affected the way people can gamble online.