Posts Tagged: Fantasy Sports

Daily Fantasy Sports Update: From Skill v. Chance to Legislative Dance

Sports have given us the Icky Shuffle, the Mark Gastineau sack dance and George “Twinkle Toes” Selkirk.  Perhaps the greatest dance of all has been the state legislatures side-stepping the skill v. chance issue.

I really thought we’d get practical guidance from the Daily Fantasy Sports skill v. chance debate for marketing lawyers to help advise on typical promotional games.  The New York State lawsuits between the NY Attorney General and DraftKings and FanDuel provided just the battleground.  But, alas, it was not meant to be.  Was politics the poison or the antidote?

Since the New York DFS lawsuits began in November 2015, fifteen states have passed laws legalizing DFS – including New York in August 2016.  For those keeping track, DFS is now legal in AK, CO, DE, IN, KS, ME, MD, MA, MS, MO, NH, NJ, NY, PA, TN, VA, VT. (more…)

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Condemnation, Litigation, Regulation, Legislation, Congratulation – Are NFL Ratings Down because of The Daily Fantasy Sports Crackdown?

 

Sports Illustrated recently had an article listing their experts’ take on why NFL TV ratings are down an overall 11% from last year.  Number 7 on their top 10 list was the Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) bans.  Should the past year of condemnation, litigation, regulation and legislation lead to congratulation to aggressive state attorneys general and legislators for this downturn?  Perhaps.  But to the delight of the NFL (and ESPN, CBS and NBC), most states are now saying “Give Peace A Chance.”

First, DFS were flying under the radar and gradually creating a buzz.  Then, DFS exploded last year spurring increased NFL interest and TV viewership.  Because of this popularity, many legislatures took an interest and decided they had to investigate this (new) phenomena.  A number of state attorneys general issued formal opinions condemning DFS and some filed lawsuits against DFS operators.  Now, the dust is starting to clear, and it appears that most states are recognizing that DFS is a form of legal contest. (more…)

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Playing for Keeps: Daily Fantasy Football 2016

When the last online fantasy football game was played, the attorneys general of New York, Nevada and Illinois were throwing penalty flags, state legislators was huddling to set the next play, and the daily fantasy sports leagues were taking it on the chin.

Where are we now? Here’s a 50 state survey:

DFS expressly allowed: CO, IN, KS, MD, MA, MS, MO, NY, RI, TN, WV, VA

Contested: AL, DE, GA, HI, ID, IL, NV, SD, TX

Banned: AZ, IO, LA, MT, WA

Proposed legislation: CA, CT, FL, KY, MI, MN, NE, NJ, NM, OK, PA, SC, WI

No legislation: AS, AK, ME, NH, NC, ND, OH, OR, UT, WY

How about this stat: leading up to the 2015 NFL season, daily fantasy sports leagues spent over $750 million in ads – more than the entire beer industry. In 2015, the top two companies had recorded a combined $3 billion in player entry fees. (more…)

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Competitive Video Gambling: The Secret Hobby Going on in Your Basement

Competitive video gaming is a somewhat recent attraction for (mostly) young adult boys and (mostly) men who think they are young adult boys. I’ve even seen my young adult son watch YouTube videos of other people playing video games. (Don’t shame me as a parent.) Competitive video gambling is what happens when people decide to bet on the outcome of others playing video games. Class actions are what happen when the unlucky gamblers decide to sue.

Recently, one of these gamblers brought a putative class action against the publisher and developer of the video game Counter Strike: Global Offensive (or in vid game talk, CS:GO) claiming that the game allowed for illegal gambling, the “contract” he entered into with the developer was invalid, and of course, he should get restitution for his losses.

In my real simple terms, gathered from the Complaint, CS:GO matches are streamed live on websites like Twitch; user accounts can be linked to third-party (international) websites; and players can purchase “skins” which can be used like casino chips to place bets on the games. (more…)

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Get Yer Bets in on Iowa: Legal Political Prediction Gambling

Did you know that you can legally trade futures contracts on whether Trump tanks in Iowa or Sanders soars in New Hampshire? Two not-for-profit “stock” markets allow online trading – with real money – on a political prediction market. The Iowa Electronic Markets (IEM) and PredictIt are online not-for-profit “stock” markets run by the University of Iowa and Victoria University, Wellington in New Zealand for educational and research purposes. On these markets people can buy and trade futures contracts based upon predictions of electoral results with trading accounts of up to $500 on IEM and $850 on PredictIt.

How can this be? Both the IEM and PredictIt have received no-action letters from the U.S. Commodities Futures Trading Commission saying these markets were not regulated by the Commodity Exchange Act. (more…)

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Government to Citizens: Powerball Good/Daily Fantasy Sports Bad

What’s good for the goose isn’t always good for the gander.

44 states are selling legal lottery tickets to hopeful citizens with the 1 in 292.2 million chance of becoming a billionaire. (For those keeping score, you can’t play Powerball in AL, AS, HA, MS, NV and UT.)

At least 8 states have declared daily fantasy sports illegal gambling; all of these states, except Nevada, allow Powerball. (Again, for the score keepers, no DFS in AZ, IO, LA, MT, NV, WA, IL and NY*) *NY appellate court recently said o.k. for now.

What’s the difference? Your government said so. (more…)

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