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USA: The Land Of Confusion
by Karl Yu

The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act was intended to put a dent in online poker and sports betting in America; in fact, it would’ve stamped out the perceived vice altogether if the bill’s architects had their way.

But lately it seems as if mixed signals are being sent out by both pro and anti-online gaming activists. Will the United States do away with the unlawful gaming legislation? Will it stay the course? There has been both good and bad news.

The effects of the legislation had online gaming companies seriously scaling back their marketing efforts.


Most recently, one of the world’s most respected poker players and a true blue American Doyle Brunson was forced to let go of his Doyles Room poker site because of the UIGEA.

According to website Eye on Gambling (EOG) even Texas Dolly was feeling the pinch:

In view of the passage of the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA) and the cessation of operations by Neteller and other payment processors, the management of the Doyle Brunson Poker Network (DBPN) has reluctantly decided not to permit online real money play by USA-based players at

But before Doyles Room players bury their heads and cry, it should be noted that Brunson won’t be leaving American players in the cold, as EOG is also reporting that U.S. players will be transferred to Full Tilt Poker.

The World Series of Poker will do things a little differently this year. In the past ads for online sites (.com, .net) could be seen everywhere. But this year, in order to conform to the legislation, banners or even t-shirts featuring the likes of sites such as PokerStars and Full Tilt will not be allowed, though the WSOP is also headed to Europe, which doesn’t restrict ads.


PartyGaming stock rose on the strength of news that the UIGEA would be repealed by Democrat chairman of the House Financial Services Committee Barney Frank.

Back in March 2006, Frank was quoted as saying that he didn’t agree with anti-online gambling legislation.

“Adults are entitled to do with their money what they want to do,” he said.

Unfortunately the rumors proved to be unfounded and Frank’s office sought to clarify his stance.

Although he [Frank] was opposed to anti-online gaming legislation, rumors of the UIGEA’s demise were exaggerated.

“There are a lot of reports coming out of Europe and I have no idea where they are coming from. There hasn't been anyone on our staff talking about that, including the Chairman,” said a spokesperson from Frank’s office.

There has been some good news amidst the gloom from the pall cast by the UIGEA though. While Barney Frank won’t be trying to repeal anti-online gaming legislation for the time being, Michael Bolcerek and the Poker Players Alliance are on the verge of adding some strength to the roster.

According to reports, former Senator Alfonse D’Amato is close to a deal with the PPA to lobby on behalf of the online gaming industry.

“We [are looking] for three-term senators who love poker,” said the PPA’s president.

“He [D’Amato] fits the bill.”

Bit of both?

The payment options for online gamblers have been dwindling as fast as coaches are bolting from the San Diego Chargers.

Since NETeller and Citadel recently closed its doors to the American market, people have been scrambling for ways to finance a simple game of online poker.

Third payment party options and e-Wallets are becoming few and far between and people are looking for alternatives.

A new option is being trumpeted as the second coming of NETeller, but is it just smoke and mirrors?

After some confusion concerning its legitimacy, YouTeller is getting set to open its doors—and it is a part of Seed Capital Ltd. contrary to reports that stated otherwise.

There is a catch, unlike the FirePays and the NETellers of the world that everyone with a credit card and the internet has access to, a YouTeller account will be harder to come by.

Following the model used by Google’s e-mail service, YouTeller accounts will be doled out by invitation only.

The current plan is to have 1000 customers on board by March with public accounts not available in the first few months.

According to YouTeller spokesperson Florian Schweitzer the payment system has a €150 transaction and account limit, which will deter criminal activity.

But would €150 make it worth bettors’ while to sign up?

There are also rumors circulating that the people behind YouTeller are NETeller executives. It must also be said that these rumors have not been confirmed.

Good news, bad news and a lot of uncertainty. Just an average week in the world of online gambling.

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