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Apr
28th

Some Casino Software Providers Are Staying in the US Market

Since ‘black Friday’ a couple of weeks ago there has been a major shakeup in the online gambling industry. While the raids and site seizures were confined to online poker many online casino operators have gotten skittish and have withdrawn from the UK market for now. Many of the top online gaming sites have blocked American players after the FBI and the Department of ‘Justice’ issued indictments against executives from PokerStars, Absolute Poker, and Full Tilt Poker. The US government has also seized several bank accounts in several countries leading many to believe that the raids were all about money, not online gambling. The US government is seeking $3 billion dollars from the four poker sites.

If the US government had legalized online gaming it would now be receiving billion of dollars annually from tax revenues. Online poker generates over $56 billion dollars every year and the US government is missing out on a lot of much needed tax revenues. While the raids have frightened many gaming operators away from the US market several gaming software providers continue to do business as if nothing had happened. Vegas Technology and Real Time Gaming have allowed their gaming sites to continue to do business in the lucrative US gaming market. Gaming Analyst Brad Dawkins stated “The fact that neither Vegas Technology or RTG have instructed their casinos to pull out of the US is a sign that not all in the industry believe that these recent arrests had anything to do with online gambling. There have been many legal experts who believe online gambling is legal in the US, and these software providers obviously believe that as well.”

The US government insists that online gaming is illegal despite vague and confusing regulations. Many legal analysts believe the US rules are confusing and non-descriptive. Online poker players insist that poker is a skill based game and that distinction makes a difference in some states with online gaming laws. While some poker giants like Bodog continue to operate in the US Microgaming has ordered all of their casinos to exit the US market for now. Internet bingo players in the US have had no reported difficulties finding website to play at and so far internet bingo has not attracted the attention of US authorities.

Many foreign gaming companies have deliberately stayed out of the US market in hopes of bettering their chances of acquiring US gaming licenses once online gaming is legalized in the United States. There is a proposal in the House of Representatives that would tax and regulate online gaming and most gaming companies are eagerly awaiting the results.