Online Gambling:Industry Experts View
I had the pleasure of interviewing three prominant individuals within the online gambling industry recently. They are Onlinecasinoreports.com, Jesse Eddleman (Potentialeight.com) and Topboss Group (Heather Gartland).
I’ve asked each of them some thought-provoking questions and where do they see the industry in another 5 years time. I’m not going to discuss each and every question only the most relevant ones.
Onlinecasinoreports.com needs little introduction. This portal casino has been online since 1999 and a powerhouse when it comes to player retention, the latest gambling news, game rules, in-depth online casino and game reviews.
Onlinecasinoreports: Has the ”Golden Days” of online gambling come to an end and is the industry properly regulated?
”I can honestly say that during the “Golden Days” we as affiliates faced very little competition, regretably those days have gone the way of the Dodo. However, I must point out that change and competition has done the industry a world of good too. Why? Basically it forced your sub-standard operators and affiliates out of business. Those who stayed the course came up with innovative solutions, provided quality content and better entertainment.
Is regulation the way to go? Regulation works for some countries but not for all. Reason being, some countries do it “right”, like the UK and Denmark. Whilst others such as Italy and the US miss the plot completely. Affiliates who want to venture into the US market must jump through a lot of bureaucratic hoops and be prepared to pay high taxes. From an affiliate perspective regulation in these countries does little to help our industry.” You can read the full interview on this page.
Jesse Eddleman: I accidentally stumbled on to Jesse’s site, suffice it to say what I saw impressed me. He has a degree in mathematics and English and writes in-depth articles on gambling online.
Jesse, many players are still not familiar how the house edge is calculated, can you tell us in layman’s terms how it is calculated?
”The house edge or house advantage is the average cash amount you’ll lose as a percentage of your bet. Let’s assume you wager $100 on a game which has a house advantage of 2%, strictly speaking you’ll lose $2 on average in that game. You might win more than you would on average, or you might lose, but the average stays the same.
Not wanting to sound presumptuous but I’ve written a couple of authority articles on poker. My skill set allows me to analyse and to communicate complicated ideas to beginners which enables them to understand the intricasies of the game. One of the articles I wrote last year; EV Calculation Tutorials for Poker explains to the reader how to calculate the expected value (average payout of a play).”
In your expert opinion, is the industry properly regulated? If not which mechanisms do you propose to regulate it better?
”From the sound and looks of things every country, state and province with regulated online gambling has their own set of problems. Lawmakers simply don’t understand the reality of the online gambling world.
Here’s a good example. In Canada, online gambling is outlawed on a federal level but it allows the provinces to offer their own games. As such, most provinces (with the exception of Alberta and Saskatchewan) run their own online gambling portals.
The problem is that provinces are not permitted to offer licenses to other operators. They can’t compete with companies who have been doing this for years and they fail to attain any significant market share. The market share for the provincially-operated games in a place like British Columbia hovers around five percent to twenty percent.
Plus, the federal government in Canada strictly prohibits sports betting. This compelled the Canadian Gaming Association to annul their legislature because of all the illegal bets that were made on the Super Bowl. The crux of the matter here is that the government does not benefit from the allegal bets made-in essence it’s stupidity in its purest form. Read Jesse’s full interview here.
To recap. What you have in Canada is a shining example, the provinces are allowed to offer games, but are not allowed to make decisions that will benefit both the players and the governments.”
Heather Gartland, in partnership with her husband Andy, is co-owner of the Topbossgroup.com. Truth be told Heather is a true industry veteran, she’s seen it all and done it all.
Topbossgroup.com: Since you started out many years ago has the industry changed a lot? Is it worse off now than it was back then?
”The nuts and bolts of the industry is still the same but over the years there’s been some major changes. In the “old days” there were only a handful of online casinos to promote and a few software providers such as Microgaming, Playtech and RTG. Competition was not as fierce as it is today and Google’s guidelines were a lot simpler. If you followed the rules it was quite easy to get your site’s pages on the first page. Nowaday’s with Google’s new algorithm updates: Panda and Penguin it’s virtually impossible to game the system. This is one of the main reasons why we decided to focus primarily on adding quality content to our sites! We firmly believe ‘content is king’.
Whether the industry is worse off now? This depends on how you look at it. From an affiliate perspective it certainly is, mainly due to increased competition and trying to stay abreast of Google’s algo updates.
From a player point of view the industry is better regulated plus the casinos offer an extensive game variety and more perks to players. In terms of transparency I would give the industry a 4 out of 10. I’m of the opinion that there’s still a lot of shaving going on and that the casinos only give us a ”watered-down” version of the stats reports and not the reports they receive from the software providers. You can read the full interview with Heather here.”
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