Colorado and Missouri have joined four other states in signing legislation geared toward the increased regulation of online gaming. While many associate this with online gaming, recent laws are instead geared toward fantasy sports.
The fantasy sports industry is a booming one, and its market in North America alone is an astonishing 26 billion dollars annually. Last Friday, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon signed the Missouri Fantasy Sports Consumer Protection Act. It enforces higher standards of regulation over DFS. Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper also acted last Friday when he enacted a similar bill for his state. Both processes were expedited quickly through the legislatures.
Traditionally, fantasy sporting events were played among friends over a period of several months. Based on statistics on how players perform, hypothetical teams are established, and bets are made on how they will perform. In recent years, however, online communities have been established that require participants to pay a fee to play. It’s estimated that the top one percent are the winning bettors, and they receive the majority of the winnings.
With much debate, it’s ultimately up to the states to determine whether or not this type of gaming is allowed under the law. Prior to the addition of Missouri and Colorado, Indiana, Virginia, Tennessee and Mississippi had passed legislation geared toward higher regulation. Pennsylvania and New York are in the consideration process.
Colorado and Missouri have both enacted the stipulation that participants of online fantasy sports be at least 18 years of age to participate. Furthermore, bets on school sports at both the high school and college levels have been prohibited. The bottom line is that DFS is gambling, and lawmakers in both states are also looking to expand their efforts as they looking into the regulation of other online forms of online gambling such as Internet poker.