Legalized online poker in the U.S. will blow out a candle on its first birthday cake later this month, a milestone that will be applauded by many.
However, the first year has been fraught with a number of surprises and challenges, many of which may continue in the second year and beyond. U.S. regulated online poker has been far from smooth sailing to date and the choppy waters ahead will have to be navigated successfully if legislation is to someday spread throughout most of the country.
The biggest challenge remains Sheldon Adelson and his Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling. Were it not for the billionaire casino owner’s deep pockets, regulated online poker would likely proliferate at a quicker pace. But the 80-year-old has made online gambling his pet peeve and will spare no expense in attempting to derail the plans of individual states to enact Internet poker and gambling legislation.
Adelson’s anti-online gambling efforts are being tackled head-on by the likes of the American Gaming Association, the Poker Players Alliance and the Coalition for Consumer and Online Protection. It’s a battle that will likely reach a fever pitch in year no. 2, as both sides lobby lawmakers to see things their respective ways and introduce legislation accordingly.
Aside from the hypocritical stance of the Las Vegas Sands CEO, online gaming sites continue to be plagued by payment processing and geolocation issues. Some credit card companies have been slow to accept the legality of deposits in regulated states, turning off players who attempt to deposit but are declined.
That problem is of critical importance and is likely to improve as time goes on. Those who really want to play poker online in regulated states will find a way to do so, but being rejected at the deposit stage is quite frustrating for players who are situated within either Delaware, New Jersey or Nevada.
Equally as frustrating is being a resident of any of those states, but being labeled as an out-of-stater by a process that relies on cell phones to determine the whereabouts of a potential player. The geolocation problems experienced by some should also improve with time and technological advancements. Let’s hope that situation is completely rectified by the two-year anniversary at the latest.
While many predicted a regulated online poker boom of sorts once a few states rolled out their igaming regimes, it hasn’t happened. The anticipated domino effect has not come into play and it may be causing more states to continue to take a “wait and see” approach toward joining the online gambling party.
Even though almost a dozen states are said to be considering online poker and gambling legislation, the dominoes remain standing. It will be interesting to see how many more states have enacted igaming regulations by anniversary no. 2. The dominoes may yet fall one day in the future. Perhaps when the existing problems have been solved and laid to rest, online poker and gambling legislation in the U.S. will advance at a faster speed.
In the meantime, players who may be waiting for their state legislatures to enact online poker regulations have a number of excellent options to choose from with regard to selecting a poker room at which to play. Take a look at our U.S. poker sites homepage to find a site and a deposit bonus offer that’s best for you.
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