July 16, 2009 (CAP Newswire) — Continuing the recent surge of media interest in online gambling that 2009 has seen, CNN has published a story exploring the possibility that iGaming will soon once more be a fully legal activity in the United States — and how certain companies are making sure they're prepared to reap the benefits when that day comes.
After all, consumers are clearly still interested in gambling online, and the vague, confusing regulations of the UIGEA haven’t stopped that. Aside from the still-legal offshoots that have the support of powerful professional sports interests, including betting on fantasy sports and online lotteries, “online gambling in the United States still goes on — billions of dollars every year — it just happens via offshore outfits and offshore accounts.”
“Strictly speaking, in ain't legal, but when you have a feeling about a big football game, or you have a poker itch to scratch, well, you'll find a way to scratch it,” the article continues.
This angle ties in with The Economist’s recent story that European companies have proved themselves highly innovative in creating alternatives for U.S. gamblers unable to bet with companies based in their own country. The larger point, however, is that since such interest remains, and the legality is so fractured, that full legalization and regulation, probably ushered in by U.S. Congressman Barney Frank’s recent anti-UIGEA crusades, seems to be inevitable.
In the meantime, states the article, London-based Betfair is at the forefront of companies working themselves into the U.S. market early by innovative means. Instead of simply waiting for gambling to be regulated in the U.S., Betfair is seeking new ways to get itself in front of U.S. bettors, specifically, with horse racing. Interestingly, its solution may involve the hugely popular social media site Facebook.com.