Online Gaming: Between Business, Entertainment, and Controversies



Online gambling is a phenomenon that has popped out of nowhere a little over two decades ago. Since then, it never stopped growing – even today, new casinos are being launched to cater to the ever-growing audience. All this in spite of the often hostile legal environment – the business is often insufficiently regulated or not regulated at all. Even though some of the biggest potential markets are closed in front of online gambling groups, the business keeps growing – in 2015, online gambling generated revenues worth around $38 billion, and about 12% of this revenue was generated by online casinos like the All Slots.

Unfortunately, although there is need for this more casual and less addictive form of gambling in many countries, like the US and Canada, legislators have failed to take the appropriate measures to handle it. In Canada, for example, online gambling is officially a state monopoly, yet state-owned companies have failed to provide local players with a local service to use. Instead, Canadian players need often to flock to offshore operators, regulated in their own markets, yet in a “legal gray area” in the country. Thousands, perhaps tens of thousands play All Slots in Canada due to not having a local alternative. Even residents of the provinces where the state provides players with a local alternative the quality of services and the variety of games lags behind what international operators have to offer, leading to some players to continue to use offshore gaming venues like the All Slots and its likes.

In the US, things are a lot different. States are free to decide whether to regulate or ban any and all form of gambling online, yet most of them haven’t acted on this freedom. There are only three states – Nevada, Delaware, and New Jersey – that have regulated some form of online gambling (mostly poker and casino games) but most others haven’t passed the phase of tentative proposals and headings on the matter. The vast majority of international operators don’t accept players from the US, mostly because of the controversial nature of their legal framework and its lack of predictability. Those that do, in turn, are considered by the international player community to be less reliable than the biggest regulated operators. In most US states, the only form of legal online gambling is offered by social game developers and simulated gaming companies like GSN Games. Operators like the All Slots keep their virtual gates tightly closed in front of US-based players.

Online casino games have been shown to be a casual form of real money online entertainment, often costing players less than their social counterparts. Still, there is a strong opposition against this profitable business, despite its potential to generate considerable tax revenues for the states deciding to regulate them instead of staying passive about the matter.