Sports Gambling is 100% (il)legal!

Many media platforms have recently discussed the issue of whether or not daily fantasy sports are considered to be gambling or not. FanDuel and DraftKings have made it very clear that they do not believe they have crossed the line into a gambling website. Both companies claim that by only requiring an entry fee it does not translate as making a bet. By allowing participants to pay an entry fee, they promise that there is a chance to win cash on a daily basis based on athlete’s performance at various sports and levels.

But, what constitutes gambling? The NFL and NBA, along with a few others, lobbied for Congress to pass the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, which made sports betting illegal in all states, except Nevada and Delaware. This is tricky because there is no statement about fantasy sports. In 1992, people were using fantasy sports leagues but no one thought about daily fantasy sports becoming popular nation wide.

The basis to their argument is that it is a game of skill and by using the 2006 Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act as their source, technically that allows it to be legal in most states. John Oliver, as usual, voiced his opinions on the topic and added in his own witty twist.

There is a fine line that I believe FanDuel and DraftKings have crossed, The New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman also agrees and stated that:

“Daily fantasy sports is neither victimless nor harmless, and it is clear that DraftKings and FanDuel are the leaders of a massive, multi-billion-dollar scheme intended to evade the law and fleece sports fans across the country. Today we have sent a clear message: not in New York, and not on my watch.”

The legal team arguing for DraftKings told ESPN that, “We look forward to our day in court”.

Yeah, I bet you do…

We’ll see how long this lasts, but I have a strong feeling that the websites are going to be shut down very soon. Happy gambling!


Author: sportswille

Reformed ad agency guy. Sac Kings, PGA Tour, Pebble Beach, Aspen yielded fascination with sports business. Now teach at my alma mater, University of Texas Austin: Integrated Marketing, Social Media, Business and Law and Sports Audiences. 40 year streak of single digit handicap under severe pressure.

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