US Citizens Victims Of The War On Gambling

from the snake-eyes dept

Executives at online gambling companies aren't the only ones getting hurt by the US government's recent actions against the industry. Plenty of law-abiding US citizens have had some of their funds effectively frozen in online accounts, with little recourse for getting it back. As online casinos and money transfer firms like NETeller stop taking dollars from US citizens, they've also stopped returning money to them. These companies insist that some method will be determined for users to get their money back, although it's unclear when that will occur, or what that will be. It's hard to imagine that any of them will try too hard to return money to depositors, if doing so could put them further afoul of the law. Some might argue that the gamblers were breaking the law, and shouldn't have any expectations of getting their money back. After all, if you were buying illegal drugs online, you wouldn't try to get a refund if your supplier went belly-up. But the law is targeted on the banks and other institutions that fund gambling, and it's not clear that actually placing bets online is a violation. So until that's specified, it's legitimate for gamblers to be upset about losing access to their funds.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    ScaredOfTheMan, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 1:22pm

    Lets be clear here...The US doesn't have a problem with gambling online....they have problem with online gambling that doesn't donate to their campaign reelection funds or state and federal taxes....they want their cut too!

    There are a lot of Rich Casino owner's in Las Vegas and around the US who are happy this "War" is happening

    ...always follow the money

     

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  2.  
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    Sea Man, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 1:41pm

    Upset?

    Gamblers upset about losing money? Isn't that what gambling is?

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 1:44pm

    "Gamblers upset about losing money? Isn't that what gambling is?"

    My thoughts exactly.

     

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  4.  
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    SATAN, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 1:46pm

    Re:

    ScaredOfTheMan wrote:
    Lets be clear here...The US doesn't have a problem with gambling online....they have problem with online gambling that doesn't donate to their campaign reelection funds or state and federal taxes....they want their cut too!

    There are a lot of Rich Casino owner's in Las Vegas and around the US who are happy this "War" is happening

    ...always follow the money


    BINGO!

     

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  5.  
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    JJ, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 1:47pm

    Sea Man, don't be an idiot. Read the article, not just the title.

    I have a Netteller account and have NOT used it for gambling. I can not get my money out of the account. I am a victim of the war on gambling.

     

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  6.  
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    Chris, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 1:59pm

    Money

    Of course it's "legitimate" to be pissed about losing money that's rightfully yours. Why would the government opt to keep more money in the hands of institutions(the gambling site companies) that purport law breakeing? Even if gamblers did break the law, the government should make sure the online casinos don't keep money that might not otherwise have been in their pockets. Seems counter-intuitive to let the companies that seduced citizens into breaking the law keep more money than they should.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 4:08pm

    Even though we have Gambling Institutions in the us. They are illegal unless 1 of 2 things are happening.

    1) Native American Territory is not considered US Property for the rights of Gambling. Therefore they are allowed to flurrish (not to mention the money to the gov for various reasons)

    2) The Gambling is Goverment Operated or Sponsored.

    Gotta love Fed Law giving theman excusive rights to something.

     

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  8.  
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    Dosquatch, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 4:24pm

    Re: Upset?

    Gamblers upset about losing money? Isn't that what gambling is?

    Which answer do you want? The snippy answer is, "it depends on the game and on which side of the table you're sitting." Gambling actually makes quite a bit of money for the casinos.

    The less snippy answer is, no, it is not. It is risking the loss of some amount of money for the possibility of claiming some larger amount of money. In this sense, every business venture ever is gambling. The successful gambler is one who properly controls the risk to his own favor. Selling fast food to Americans is a good risk - the money you put forth is likely to gain substantially. Selling space heaters in the desert is a bad risk.

    Most casino games are a bad risk. On the other hand, so are state sponsored lotteries. But, as I say, most casino games... anything where one plays against the house. Poker is not played against the house, it is played against other players, and is more a game of skill than of chance.

    I play poker. I am up quite a bit from what I put in. Gambling makes me money. Money that I cannot access at the moment. And yes, I am pissed. I am being penalized because of political posturing and axe-grinding. And all the arguments about the government's cut are so much bunk - I pay my taxes.

    My government of, by, and for the people has not only ceased serving me, it has crossed over to actively harming me. Where do I sign up for the revolution?

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 5:23pm

    Re: Re: Upset?

    The problem, dosquatch, is that in this era when so many people have so much, the cost of a revolution is higher than ever--for everyone, including you. For many folks, getting raped by politics in the USA is still a more pleasant experience than getting raped other ways in other places. I truly hope you recover satisfactorily from this setback/molestation, and that your lot in life is no worse for the wear. At that point your fervor for revolution will have worn down, and we'll all get on with life, and it will be someone else's turn to take the shaft.

     

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  10.  
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    Joe Smith, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 7:37pm

    Monopolies

    First the government effectively monopolizes theft and extortion (who else has recently threatened to send men with guns to your house to take 30% of your income); now they want to monopolize gambling ...

    I guess next year they'll be opening up brothels.

     

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  11.  
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    T Man, Feb 2nd, 2007 @ 8:19pm

    I Bet You They Get Stuck Holding The (Empty) Bag

    Wonder what the odds are that these folks will get their money back, even part of it. Not very good, I'd wager. Wanna bet me?

    T Man
    http://www.stophairlosstoday.blogspot.com

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 3rd, 2007 @ 2:45am

    hmmm

    Everytime i click the link for this article I get a Hueristic Virus warning. Techdirt, you working with dirty tech?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
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    ScytheNoire, Feb 3rd, 2007 @ 10:20am

    America's War on Everything

    I love how America is always at WAR with EVERYTHING.
    War on Drugs
    War on Online Gambling
    War on Piracy
    War on Iraq
    War on Terrorism
    War on Violence
    War on Video Games
    War on Canada
    War on Democracy
    War on Neo-Liberalism
    War on Fat-Assed Bitches
    War on Air America
    War on Trans Fats
    War on Whatcha Got?

    I think America is obsessed with War. Gee, and you wonder why the rest of the world thinks America is a bully and all about War.

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 4th, 2007 @ 8:27am

    Re: America's War on Everything

    You forgot

    War on ScytheNoire

     

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  15.  
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    patrick, Feb 4th, 2007 @ 11:50am

    Re: victim

    Neteller is more than eager to keep US Dollars - makes their balance sheet look good in light of all the $$$ they lost when their stock took a dive.

    And for those who gamble, the casinos are trying to find more ways for you to deposit into their coffers - if they put a bit of pressure on Neteller, you'd have your money.

     

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  16.  
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    |333173|3|_||3, Feb 4th, 2007 @ 6:26pm

    online poker

    online poker is played against the house, if you go to some poker site run by a bunch of crooks, since the site can be rigged so that an AI is one (or more) of the players, and he wins often and big enough to make a fat profit. since the cards have no physical existence, and the AI can know what cards you have, it would be trivial to do this (compared to the effort taken to set up the rest of the site to operate legitimately).

     

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  17.  
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    |333173|3|_||3, Feb 4th, 2007 @ 6:29pm

    Re: online poker

    Damn, I shouldn't have posted that. now all the TD readers will know not to visit any online gambling site that I might set up. ;-)

     

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  18.  
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    John R Sommers, Feb 15th, 2007 @ 6:57pm

    Internet gambling ban

    Those of you gloating over the ban on internet gambling should be aware that this is only the first of what will eventually become total regulation of the internet by the govt. There foot is in the door and we will never be able to close it again. Say goodbye to the internet we once knew!

     

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  19.  
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    rhonda, May 2nd, 2007 @ 1:32am

    annonymous coward

    "Gamblers upset about losing money? Isn't that what gambling is?

    Are you answering a question with a question? "Losing money" is part of the definition of gambling, but the question is directed to the issue of the gambler being upset! By the way the other part of the definition of gambling is the part about the "chance of winning", which obviously doesn't appear to a prevelant activity of the gambler or else this topic would not be an issue, nor would the gaming sites be in business. The gambler that is afflicted with the disease of addiction to gambling has every right to be upset due to being victimized by inticement practices and misrepresentation of credit offers amongst many other "lethal" tactics these gaming sites use.
    It is as bad as, if not worse, advertising and inticing people to smoke cigarettes, which will prove hazardous to one's health. Preying on the vulneriblity of one's disease of addiction.
    Why not call their site hooklineandsinkercasino and instead of clicking on "sign me up now" icon, it could say "reel me in NOW"!
    How is it these internet banking sites are able to allow deposits to be approved that have nonsufficient funds available for processing the said transaction?
    My thoughts exactly.

     

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  20.  
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    J.J. Evens, Sep 26th, 2009 @ 3:58pm

    Re: America's War on Everything

    I totally agree with you ScytheNoire. Also, this "War on" subject, it raises a issue; One which I often ponder. Think of it in these terms. The Vietnam "War" & WW2. The USA officially "declared", "WAR" on it's belligerents. (Germany, Italy, & Japan) Congress + the President signed documents, etc. Not so in Vietnam. No "War" was declared, and all American POWs, were considered common criminals by North Vietnam, and not afforded POW rights & protections under the Geneva Convention. This raises my question. Since the government officially labeled our drug problems a "WAR" on drugs, instead of what it is; A social & medical problem, then who are the belligerents, enemy combatants, etc? Dealers? Users? Ultimately it's our family, friends...it's US. How do you wage "War" on family and friends? Is it not a form of "Civil War"? Technically, would not a drug dealer involved in a police shoot out, be an enemy combatant? If captured is he a POW? Are users just collateral damage? Do they have Geneva Conv. rights? (NOT that I condone drug dealing or shooting at our men in blue, I DON'T) I'm just wondering from a technical stand point, since it's a "WAR" on drugs. Maybe I'm wrong, in that congress never officially signed war declaration documents, but then again, the drug war casualties (the incarcerated/POWs) number well over 1 million. More then # of K.I.A. in ALL wars the USA has been involved it, from 1492, to 2009.

     

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  21.  
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    Kit & Kaboodle Noodles, Sep 26th, 2009 @ 4:04pm

    Government Theft.

    Technically the government outright "Stole" the money. It should be repaid in a timely fashion, with interest. Also, the government officials involved in the robbery/felony grand larceny of this money should be arrested and do serious prison time. Just like any other thief or criminal. What they are doing is illegal and they are hiding behind their government credentials. They only get away with it because they have the "power" (but not the right) to do so. If it were you or I, or any other regular civilians who perpetrated this scam, we would be in jail.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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