Closing State Budget Gaps With Online Gaming Revenues
The online gaming industry continues to grow and expand. The online gaming industry has been largely unaffected by the global economic downturn and some experts say the online gaming sector is 'recession resistant.' In the US online gaming is still illegal but the US is still the largest online gaming market in the world. Americans spend billions annually at unregulated offshore gaming sites that pay no taxes in the US. There is a bill in congress that would legalize online poker but other games like online bingo would remain illegal. Because congress is moving so slow many states have announced plans to offer online gaming services to residents.
Strangely many of the biggest players in the online gaming industry are located in the United States. Several large casino corporations have formed partnerships with online gambling sites. Native American tribes also want a piece of the action. States realize the potential of online gaming to generate new revenue streams and help close budget gaps. Traditionally Federal and state governments have been less than sympathetic to the interests of online casinos. On April 15th 2011 the federal government conducted a series of raids and seizures that became known as 'Black Friday' in the gaming industry. Publicity mad prosecutors targeted several top poker sites and one online bingo site.
Internet gambling legend Alex Fitzgerald moved abroad so he could continue to earn an income. Fitzgerald stated "I can never live in my country of birth again without giving up the only job that has consistently fed me since I was a teenager." Many states are cutting necessary services and a growing number of people are pushing for legalized online gaming to help solve fiscal problems and maintain necessary services. Since there has been no real federal action most experts believe the states will launch their own online gaming operations sometime in 2013. Nevada has already issued several licenses and Delaware has legalized online gaming. New Jersey is in the process of ironing out the details in a new online gambling law.
Social and mobile gaming are reaching a wider audience. In the past most players at online gaming sites were in their 30's and 40's. Today's mobile and social players are usually in their early 20's and affluent. States that take advantage of advances in gaming technology will be the big winners.
Connect with author, Jeff Davis on Google+.