Internet Sportsbooks – Basics, History and Legal Issues

Internet Sportsbooks – Basics, History and Legal Issues

Online Sportsbook Basics

A sportsbook is a place where gamblers wager on the results of various sports competitions – football, basketball, baseball, soccer, or horse racing. Sports betting are favored by millions of sports fan all over the world. The method of sports betting varies with the type of sport, the game of betting. Internet sports book, like other types of online casinos or virtual casinos, is a derivation of the land-based traditional sportsbook. An Internet sports book provides diverse games or a single one depending on the website operation, franchise, etc. While Internet sportsbooks lack the excitement of face-to-face experience, they can operate much more cost effectively than land-based sportsbooks. They offer other types of online gambling – casino games, blackjack, poker etc.. Among various types of sports, football fans with gambling interests are often busy with NFL football betting lines.

The History

On August 18, 1995 the world’s first online casino Internet Casinos, Inc. (ICI) debuted. ICI operated with 18 different casino games and for the first time offering also online access to the National Indian Lottery. In the early days ICI operated out of the Turks and Caicos Islands, outside the United States to avoid government prosecution. In the mid 90’s, the Gaming Club and Intertops casino and sports book launched the first online sports book before Internet Casinos, Inc. Building a reputable service with reliable payouts, high security, efficient customer support, and serving a large number of customers excited with this new gambling modality, the online casino succeeded.

The spring of 1996, The Interactive Gaming & Communications Corp launched an online casino and soon became a publicly traded company listed on NASDAQ. The financial success of this online casino is not only the internet, but also the acceptance of bettors’ sports wagers via telephone calls to Antigua on a toll free line via satellite.

General Legal Issues

Sportsbooks face the same legal issues like other types of online casinos. Europe and other countries have more tolerance for online gambling than US government. So most of the online casino companies are located outside of the United States to avoid government prosecution because the United States Federal Appeals Courts has ruled about the Federal Wire Act prohibiting electronic transmission of information for sports betting across state lines, but there is no a specific law prohibiting gambling of any other kind. In fact, several states rule in favor of land-based gambling but having specific laws against online gambling of any kind.

While the internet has no frontiers, gambling seems to be ruled by physical country delimiters-boundaries. Gambling is legal and regulated in Caribbean Nations and most European countries, such as Malta and the United Kingdom from where wide arrays of online casinos operate. However, in America, law says that owning an online casino or gambling related business without getting a license first may result as an illegal act, but if any individual would be willing to get one, there are no states nationwide that are currently granting online gaming licenses.