Legalization of Esports Betting Proposed in Pennsylvania

A state lawmaker is urging colleagues to support a bill he is drafting to legalize esports betting in Pennsylvania. 

Representative Ed Neilson (D-Philadelphia) began circulating a memorandum last week making the case for legitimating video-game betting in the Keystone State, observing that the esports business took in $1.1 billion worldwide in 2022 and is predicted to soon realize a $1.8-billion global value. Neilson ascribes much of the recently increased enthusiasm around esports to the lifestyle constraints imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021. 

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Connecticut Gaming Revenue Rebounding from COVID-19

Connecticut’s gaming revenue continues to grow and evolve since the heaviest pandemic-induced shutdowns impacted the income source two years ago.

A five-year analysis of the state’s gaming-derived revenues, gleaned from data via the state Department of Consumer Protection, shows how COVID-19 intermittently impacted the bottom line during the heaviest lockdowns before regaining momentum.

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Decision to Vacate DOJ’s Wire Act Reinterpretation a Big Win for Online Poker

by Johnny Kampis   A U.S. District Court ruling that said the Wire Act only applies to sports betting not only staves off a Department of Justice effort to end interstate online poker efforts,  it will also help facilitate the growth of poker gaming across the country. Earlier this month, U.S. District Court Judge Paul Barbadoro in New Hampshire ruled on a challenge by the New Hampshire Lottery Commission that the 1961 Interstate Wire Act applies only to sports betting. Barbadoro said the opinion by the DOJ in November 2018 that the Wire Act applied to other forms of gambling is set aside. States were supposed to comply by June 14, but the district court ruling removes that obligation for now. That decision “represents just about the greatest win imaginable” for poker operators, wrote Mark Edelman in Forbes. Edelman, a law professor of Zicklin School of Business in New York City focusing on issues of gaming and antitrust, said the decision “clearly supports the legality of interstate poker compacts, paving the way for online poker’s further growth on a national or semi-national basis.” So far, Delaware, New Jersey, Nevada, Pennsylvania and West Virginia have legalized online poker, with the last two now attempting to…

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Chicago’s New PlayStation Tax Shows How Greedy Politicians Can Be

by Brittany Hunter   “If it moves, tax it.” That’s government’s eternal motto, as Ronald Reagan quipped. To this, the city government of Chicago has added, “If it amuses, tax it.” A few weeks ago, PlayStation 4 users in Chicago were shocked when they turned on their consoles and saw a message from Sony. The message informed users that as of November 14, 2018, they would be required to pay a 9 percent “amusement tax” for PlayStation subscriptions such as PlayStation Now, PlayStation Plus, PlayStation Music, and others. The tax is specifically related to streaming services, so the PlayStation games themselves will not be subject to the 9 percent tax. But in today’s subscription-heavy economy, many users purchase these consoles as a medium to stream videos and music rather than using them solely to play games. Not to mention, the tax will still include subscription services that allow Playstation users to connect and play with other users around the globe. So if you own a PlayStation in Chicago, it is unlikely that you will be able to fully avoid this tax. PlayStation users, however, are not the only victims of this absurd tax. Chicago’s Amusement Tax Chicago is one of the…

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