As the debate in the United States over the regulation (and full legalization) of online gambling and Internet poker moves into the summer months, the media are covering the issue like never before.

Features like this video on CNBC have become typical. But the media frenzy isn’t restricted to U.S. media. If the U.S. regulated online poker, “state and federal authorities could potentially rake in $3bn (£1.9bn) a year,” reports the BBC.

“And, proponents argue, they could mandate consumer protections for players, who these days must deal with often shadowy foreign entities in order to play.”

“You have to hand it to Congressman Barney Frank (D-Mass.) — he is resilient,” writes Chuck Blount at “After his attempts to federally legalize and regulate the online gambling industry (HR 2267) failed last year, Frank is back for another round.”

“An analysis last year by the Congressional Joint Committee of Taxations concluded that regulated online gambling could generate $42 billion in revenue over the first 10 years of HR 2267 implementation at the federal level,” Blount continues.

Nevada: Clash of the titans
And in states with their own online gambling legislation pending, the topic is, understandably, even more popular.

And nowhere is the issue getting more attention than in Nevada. Considered by most to be America’s main gambling hub, that state’s effort to set itself up as the new American Internet casino headquarters is attracting attention from all corners.

Nevada regulators’ recent approval of a tie-in between 888 and Caesars Entertainment is one source of the media frenzy.

“The vote marks the first time regulators have explicitly allowed a casino operator to do significant business with a foreign company that offers gambling on the Internet,” notes Oskar Garcia of the Associated Press (via Bloomberg BusinessWeek).

A recent article in the Los Angeles Times on the topic created a stir in the industry last week. That article explored the Nevada situation: “Industry giants — such as Caesars Entertainment and MGM Grand Resorts — have made it clear that they would prefer federal, and not state, regulation of online gambling,” writes Stephen Caesar in the Times article.

“Analysts at Shore Capital reckoned the vote of confidence could pave the way for other foreign online gambling operators to ink joint ventures with US gaming companies, and could also bode well for a relaxing of America’s position on internet gaming,” reports the UK’s Telegraph.

In a directly related story, casino mogul and billionaire Steve Wynn’s backing of PokerStars’ move to enter the U.S. market, via a new Nevada regulatory scheme. That move will “forever change the online poker landscape,” according to Forbes.

Other states
Of course, the New Jersey media have also been all over the topic, given how intertwined those states’ economies are with gambling. California and Florida area also covering the topic heavily, as are some more unlikely states, like North Dakota, Iowa, and Hawaii.

The regulation of online gambling is “inevitable,” opines Mike Wiser of Iowa’s Globe Gazette.

“Placing virtual bets with actual cash is going to be a big part of Iowa’s gaming future, no matter what happens with the current proposal to allow Internet gambling,” Wiser adds.

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