Betcha Loses Its Big Bet: Court Now Says It's Illegal Gambling
from the betcha-knew-that dept
Like the ups-and-downs of gambling, however, the next roll of the dice hasn't been kind to Betcha. Eric Goldman is reporting that the state Supreme Court has reversed again and found the site guilty of illegal gambling by a unanimous 9-0 vote:
The court's opinion makes it clear that expansive anti-gambling laws leave almost no room for entrepreneurial yet legal Internet gambling enterprises. Here, Betcha is tripped up by the definition of "bookmaking," defined as "accepting bets, upon the outcome of future contingent events, as a business or in which the bettor is charged a fee or "vigorish" for the opportunity to place a bet." This strikes at Betcha's model of charging the parties to communicate with each other regarding betting. The court is not swayed by Betcha's formalist argument that because the loser could renege on the bet, the wager did not meet the statutory definitions for gambling. The court says the bookmaking definition applies whether the bets are made for money or not.