The Chequered History of Online Gambling In The USA

Posted by Gambling News | Gambling News | Friday 29 June 2012 9:55 pm

When people think of gambling, the first thing they envision is the bright lights of Nevada’s sin city casino strip. Yet for a country whose economy is given a major boost by the flocking tourist visiting Las Vegas, there is much controversy and talk about whether online gambling should be restricted or legalised as a whole.

Gambling Games have long since been described as being games of chance introduced to the new world by its British settlers. From the start of its introduction into this new land, gambling has always split the values and believes of communities in half.

As, whilst on one hand gambling can be seen as a great and valuable way to boost a country’s economy through a revenue increase, the other half see gambling as a viciously addictive vice which ruins people’s lives.

However, in an effort to reduce the amount of taxes American citizens would have to pay in order to fund some much needed national services, the government concluded that authorising certain forms of gambling would be in the nation’s interest for a greater good.

In order for the greater good to be maintained in the eye of the state, an American Gaming Society was established. This society was set up to depict a list of gaming options which would be made permissible by governmental law, these where to include charitable gaming, lotteries and commercial casinos.

With categories detailing the breakdown of gambling as per the authority of the American Gaming Society as bestowed unto them by the government, gambling as a whole, is deemed legal under the federal law of the United States. Nevertheless, each individual state us encouraged to regulate and even prohibit gambling in both the physical and online form of gaming.
The most liberal and pro gambling state in the whole of the USA is Nevada, where for years the local governing body and the state law have worked harmoniously together to allow gambling as a state wide legal enterprise restricted only by licenses and zoning restrictions.

Yet, whilst the pro gambling debate wages on between states, the regulations of online gambling have been closely enforced and adhered to. However, the major cause of the online gambling debate in the USA still remains that of the release and enforcement of the 1961 Federal Wire Act. This legislation served to outlaw all betting between states with regards to sports, yet failed to address any legal standing against any other forms of gambling.

Due to its ambiguous nature the Federal Wire Act has been greatly contested and its failure to legally acknowledge and regulate all forms of gambling rather than just those between interstates, led to the requirement of new legislation brought in its place as that of 2006’s unlawful internet gambling act, which served only to confuse the nation further as rather than prohibit any form of online gambling it outlawed any financial transaction made between a US citizen and the online gaming provider.

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