Is Online Gambling the New Trend?

Online gambling is increasing at a staggering rate, while the history of the industry is still as new as the Internet itself. It is very popular these days, as there are literally hundreds of casino sites that offer many games and betting limits. Online gambling is an adaptation of the real thing that happens at live casinos, among the many games that are available online you should take time to try out online blackjack, this is a very interesting game and you can enjoy it without even leaving the comfort of your own home. Online gambling is becoming more and more famous nowadays, that Institutional analysis and scrutiny are being performed by exalted personalities to dig out the real reasons of it.

Betting

According to a recent Gallup poll, gambling has become more popular among students, whether they play for fun or more seriously through poker games and sports betting. Betting online is a problem, the study says, because it has the potential to be more addictive than casino gambling. Unlike land-based gambling locations, online gambling sites do not offer betting on credit and there are no nearby ATMs from which to draw cash and then immediately bet. Most of these sites focus on card games such as poker and blackjack and on traditional casino games such as roulette and slot machines, but the roots of internet gambling center on sports betting and horse racing. It’s a little known fact that Nevada is only one of a handful of states that specifically prohibits both players and Internet operators from engaging in online betting.

Casinos

Casinos online feature high quality software that brings the excitement of casino gambling to your own home. Casinos ranked by professional gamblers, according to bonus size, payout rate, customer support, etc… Some online casinos also offer “practice areas” where players can learn the games and play for free, but be careful, success in these free areas is sure to lead to an invitation to the real gaming areas where success might not be so easy. The top few poker sites, with little overhead costs and unlimited table capacity, are making spectacular profit that has already outpaced the world’s most profitable casinos. The newer belief that ‘online casinos are recession proof stems from the theory that in tough times people turn to vices, and with the added expenditures of travel, hotels, food, and entertainment those people would not turn to Vegas type casinos, but instead turn to online forms of gambling.

Conclusion

Online gambling is a risky business, as the player has no real idea of who is running the Web site and how to contact the company should the need arise. It’s illegal in some jurisdictions and users should consult legal counsel regarding the legal status of online gambling and gaming in their jurisdiction. It’s lots of fun at online casinos, using the Internet to link up with any of thousands of web sites that offer you all forms of gambling online. Online gambling is not only fun but it’s a convenient way to do your gambling because you don’t have to carry large sums of money to the casino to gamble you can do all your transactions through either credit card or money transfer , players usually make a deposit to the online gambling site and when ever they play they can use that deposit to make wagers or to by tokens and then cash out any payouts the same way. Consider this – online gambling is set to exceed $20 billion in 2010 and is the fastest growing industry on the Internet today. Although online gambling is a very competitive business, when it comes to player abuse the industry feels so strongly that the online casinos help to protect each other. From choice of games and betting options to fun, excitement, and the chance to win money, online gambling has it all.

Common Online Gambling Games

It was 1994 in the tiny island country of Antigua and Barbuda, a certain law was passed which made the location a legal jurisdiction, allowing it to issue gambling licenses. This law paved way for online gaming and until today, most gambling companies would base their business in the country to utilize their license.

The gaming software came years before the commencement of online gaming. An Isle on Man-based software company called Microgaming developed the first fully operational online casino software which gave birth to many online gambling sites. Whereas Cryptologic, an online security software company, provided the indispensable software which made internet transaction safe, secure and workable. By 1995, the first online casino was launched.

Like many things that did not have a smooth start, the launch of online gambling also met many obstacles. One major problem it met along the way was the legality of the trade. The very idea and concept of online gambling was opposed and resisted by many and especially in the United States. Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona for several times tried to prevent American citizens from gambling online and also promoted anti-gambling campaigns.

Recently, on September 30, 2006, the US Congress passed a bill stating the it is illegal for banks and credit card companies to process payments from US residents to online gambling companies. This bill later became a law which President Bush signed on October 13.

But although online gambling have up to now been fought against by many individuals, organizations and even the government, many are still captivated by the allure of this addiction. Thus despite all the disputes, supporters and players around the world are hooked in participating to online gambling. Most common online gambling games are:

Online Poker, or Internet Poker, is known to be partially responsible for the dramatic increase in the number of poker players worldwide. Online poker tables mostly host games of Texas hold ‘em, Omaha, Seven-card stud and razz, both in tournament and ring game structures.
Online Casinos utilize the internet to play casino games roulette, blackjack, pachinko, baccarat and many others. Internet casinos may also be divided into three groups according to their interface: Web based casinos, Download-based casinos, and Live casinos. Web based casinos are played without the need to download software for playing games. Plug-ins must be installed in the browser to accommodate such games. Download-based casinos require clients to download software in order to play and wager on the casino games offered. The software connects to the casino service provider and handles contact without browser support. Whereas Live-based casinos allow online players to play and interact with the games played in real world casinos. In this setting, players connected online could see, hear and interact with live dealers at tables in casino studios around the world.
Online Sports Betting, where there are a variety of sporting events that a player could wager over the internet like fixed-odds gambling. Wagering or betting could be done through Bookmakers, spread betting firms and betting exchanges.
Online bingos are also available via the internet. Also for Mobile gambling, there are now developments in the utility of wireless and cellular devices in gambling notwithstanding the raucous debates for gambling online.

Online Gambling World As Players See It

It is significant to learn where online gambling is in today’s highly commercialized world. This is not an easy discussion and will require us to expend time and effort if we were to seek enlightenment on this matter. But this knowledge is relevant for beginners, players, and casinos themselves. For instance, such information can give you a perception of gambling, not only in the country but in the entire world. Statistics can give you information regarding the kind of gamblers casinos have and the overall gambling behavior of the populace. If you are an interested online gambler, you should keep yourself updated to the latest news.

Looking at the General Picture of the Online Gambling Realm

At the present, gamblers around the world are flustered at the approval of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), which prohibits Americans from gambling games online and which seems the most pressing issue concerning the gambling public. Nonetheless, the bill targets only the American citizens and the US gambling and casino market. But the implications of this law spread globally. One of the notable effects is the higher stringency in money transferring procedure and banking options in gambling sites. This started in 2007 though in a vague, confusing manner. The outcome is the closure of online gambling sites as a result of reduction of stocks brought about by diminishing market as the US bans its people to join online gambling. Gambling sites outside United States also forbids registration of US players. Indeed, the effects of UIGEA travelled beyond the bounds of America, affecting worldwide gambling industry, impairing more casino sites than it ought to be.

Gambling on the Internet

So, you may want to check out how gambling is prospering in other nations which have continued the tradition of gambling. American gamblers are not entirely banned from joining the gambling sites and that should be clear. Some states still allow people to gamble despite the presence of UIGEA, which is not fully implemented across the nation. More countries around the globe are promoting casinos to compensate the dire slump in the US casino market. These countries include Barbuda and Antigua in the Caribbean area, where online gambling has been long successful and flourishing. The Caribbean has some of the best licensed online casinos whose boom has been due to low taxes and speedy transactions. Of course, apart from this Caribbean country, there are more countries that allow online gambling and online casinos to operate, such as France, Australia, South Korea, and Germany. These countries have long seen the economic advantage of supporting this kind of market.

Future of Gambling

The stability of both land based and online casinos is a subject of continuing debate. There is much discussion regarding the real economic benefits of promoting casinos and letting them thrive in the commercial scene. There is also an argument regarding the pros and cons of having them around and whether the benefits outweigh the disadvantages or is it the other way around. Nonetheless, experts believe that online gambling and roulette are sure to be around for a while and that this industry remains prosperous no matter what.

Online Gambling Versus Traditional Gambling

There are many different forms of gambling from betting at the horse races or for your favourite sports teams or trying your chance at a casino game. And with today’s age of the computer you can gamble online at any of the many online sporting or casino websites. So how does online gambling compare to traditional gambling.

For starters, online gambling can be done in the comfort of your own home providing you have a computer with an active internet connection and use of a credit or debit card. And so there is little or no travel involved. Traditional gambling requires travel to the gambling site. And many people have enjoyed a gambling opportunity at Las Vegas or Atlantic City or just at their local casino or race track.

Secondly, you have to join up with the gambling website you are interested which means filling in a form and is usually free. You do not have to join or fill in any of your details with traditional gambling.

Thirdly, you can concentrate completely on your online game because there are no noisy people, no cigarette smoke and no drunken people which could annoy you. You have the peace and quiet of your own home if you desire. However with traditional gambling you are around like minded people doing the same thing and this creates atmosphere. It is a chance to get out and socialise with friends and have an enjoyable outing.

Fourthly, as each online website is competing against each other then they offer bonuses in order to entice people to join their website. And the bonuses can be large depending on the amount of money you bid eg large amounts of money or free holiday somewhere.
Do you get bonuses at traditional gambling locations? No

Fifthly, with online gambling websites, you are not obliged to tip employees. In real casinos for example, you will be obliged to tip waiters, dealers and other employees for a better service. This however could vary between different countries.

Sixthly, the online casino gambling experience may even surpass the physical casino experience as they have very strict rules and regulations.

Lastly, on online gambling websites your money is safe in the account you set up as they have high security. This is as long as you have taken your own safety precautions with antispyware and antivirus protection installed on your computer and that you have joined a licensed and regulated online gambling website. With traditional gambling you could run the risk of your money being stolen, so you just need to look after your money carefully.

These are the seven points comparing online gambling with traditional gambling. They each have a place depending on whether you want to go out for the night with friends or gamble quietly in your own home for as little or long as you like.

Online Gambling

Internet Casinos Inc. (ICI), the world’s first online casino, started operating from August 18, 1995, with 18 different games. Since then more than 1,400 websites, mostly domiciled in small Caribbean islands, have given rise to an industry that grosses over $3 billion a year. In fact no business on the Internet earns more revenue than online gambling. Out of the estimated 14.5 million online gamblers, almost 30 per cent are from Asia.

A bet can be placed in minutes. Anyone with a credit card can set up an offshore currency account with a gambling site, leaving them free to place bets on sporting events like Wimbledon, cricket, horse racing and Formula One, or join a virtual casino to play slot machines, roulette, blackjack, poker etc. Companies like Flutter and Betmart accept bets on anything from who is going to win the Nobel Prize to whether Madonna is getting a divorce or not. Bets can range from a nickel to thousands of dollars and according to whether you win or lose the amount is automatically adjusted to your account. The final balance can then either be mailed to you or left for future bets.

The law relating to online gambling in India needs to be understood within the country’s socio-cultural context. At the outset, gambling, although not absolutely prohibited in India, does not receive express encouragement by policy makers. The Indian organized gambling industry is estimated to be worth around US$8 billion. While stringent laws have checked the proliferation of casinos and high street gaming centres as in many other countries, barring the state of Goa, the lottery business remains the most post popular form of gambling.

Though gambling is not illegal, it is a highly controlled and regulated activity. Modern India is a quasi-federal Constitutional democracy and the powers to legislate are distributed at the federal as well as the state levels. Gambling features in List II of the Constitution of India, this implies that the state governments have the authority to enact laws in order to regulate gambling in the respective states. Thus, there is no single law governing gambling in the entire country. Different states have different laws governing gambling in addition to the laws that have an application across the country. While some states have banned lotteries, other states allow state government lotteries marketed and distributed in other lottery playing and promoting states through private entities.

Regulation of gambling

The courts have defined gambling as ‘the payment of a price for a chance to win a prize’. The dominant element of skill or chance shall determine the nature of the game. A game may be deemed to be gambling if the element of chance or luck predominates in deciding its outcome. As a result, Indian courts have held that betting on horse racing and a few card games are not gambling. The right to undertake the business of gambling and lotteries is not considered as a fundamental right protected by the Constitution of India. It may however be pointed out that the state government run lotteries make significant contributions to the state exchequer of several state governments and the Union government, and hence there is a resistance to complete prohibition.

The following legislation is pertinent to gambling:

The Public Gaming Act, 1867

This Act provides punishment for public gambling and for keeping of a ‘common gaming house’. This Act also authorises the state governments to enact laws to regulate public gambling in their respective jurisdictions. The penal legislations in respective states have been amended in accordance with their policy on gambling. However, this legislation does not have any direct impact on online gambling unless a wide interpretation is given to the definition of common gaming house so as to include virtual forums as well.

The Indian Contract Act, 1872 (ICA)

The ICA is a codified umbrella legislation that governs all commercial contracts in India. Under the ICA, a wagering contract is the one which cannot be enforced. The Act lays down; ‘Agreements by way of wager are void, and no suit shall be brought for recovering anything alleged to be won on any wager or entrusted to any person to abide by the result of any game or other uncertain event on which any wager is made’. Gambling, lottery and prize games have held to be wagering contracts and thus void and unenforceable. While a wagering contract is not illegal, it cannot be enforced in a court of law. Thus, the courts will not entertain any cause of action that arises out of a wagering contract.

Lotteries (Regulation) Act, 1998

This Act provides a framework for organizing lotteries in the country. Under this Act, the state governments have been authorized to promote as well as prohibit lotteries within their territorial jurisdiction. This Act also provides for the manner in which the lotteries are to be conducted and prescribes punishment in case of breach of its provision. Lotteries not authorized by the state have been made an offence under the Indian Penal Code. Several non-lottery playing states, like Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh, have prohibited the sale of other state-government lotteries under this Act.

Indian Penal Code, 1860

Section 294A deals with keeping lottery office. It says that whoever keeps any office or place for the purpose of drawing any lottery not being a State lottery or a lottery authorised by the State Government, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine, or with both.

And whoever publishes any proposal to pay any sum, or to deliver any goods, or to do or forbear doing anything for the benefit of any person, on any event or contingency relative or applicable to the drawing of any ticket, lot, number or figure in any such lottery, shall be punished with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees.

Internet gambling

The law related to gambling is also applicable to online gambling. All gambling contracts are considered to be wagering contracts and it is not possible to enforce such contracts under the ICA, detailed above.

As pointed out earlier, the online lottery is the most popular form of internet gambling in India. Most companies marketing and distributing or conducting state government-sponsored lotteries through the internet are not allowed to sell their services in the states that banned lotteries. In most cases, these marketers and distributors limit their online services to consumers who are residents of the states where a lottery is permissible. Notwithstanding the fact there has been no reported case of breach by any company promoting online lotteries, most of these companies (as a safeguard) seek an undertaking from their consumers relating to their residence.

There have been instances where one state has banned the lottery of other states, including online lotteries. In a recent case, the Karnatka High Court upheld the decision of the Karnataka government to make itself a ‘lottery free zone’ by imposing a ban on lotteries of all other states, including online lotteries under the Lotteries (Regulation) Act 1998. The state government, in this case, directed the closure of the terminals and kiosks selling the online lotteries.

Enforcement over foreign jurisdictions

If the websites are hosted and operated from outside India, it may be difficult for the Indian authorities to issue any directive to close them down or prohibit their access without using its blocking powers under the ITA. The authorities have little to worry about, as Indian foreign exchange laws do not permit remittances outside India for gambling related activity, such as the purchase of lottery tickets, football pools and sweepstakes. As a result, a gambling website hosted outside India aiming at receiving money from within India cannot do so through legal channels.

Conclusion

Online gambling remains a highly regulated sector with seemingly limited horizons to grow. While the present regulatory framework makes it difficult for offshore gambling websites to target customers in India, the India-based companies can only distribute and market state-government lotteries online in permitted territories. The pervasive authority with the government to block gambling related websites and the impossibility of enforcing gambling-related contracts further discourage the prospects for the industry.