July 12, 2013
+ new poker-only Barton bill in the House
Lest we think the Feds were just gonna drop their interest in online gaming and let states run amok with Kentucky-like money grabs, a new federal process is apparently underway … with a subcommittee hearing to put matters of consumer protection on the legislative agenda:
The Expansion of Internet Gambling: Assessing Consumer Protection Concerns
Jul 17 2013 10:00 AM ET
Russell Senate Office Building – 253
You’ll be able to watch a livestream of the hearing, which hopefully will finally remove “click a mouse, lose your house” from the conversation and instead address real issues of money laundering, privacy concerns, redress of grievances, bot use, and identity protection — not to mention what kinda data you can keep about other players, and what kinda hand histories the government can keep on you!
Gambling regulation may historically be a matter left to the states, but regulation of the internet is kinda new, and something Uncle Sam has wanted a role in for establishing minimum standards at least since the White House unveiled its strategy for consumer protection on the internet … [Bump-bump-buhhh] … on April 15, 2011.
Meanwhile, we also have a new Barton Bill — HR 2666, which has a surprisingly ungodly bill number and stated goals of protecting poker players from consumer fraud by establishing a federal program for the licensing of Onternet poker by States and federally recognized Indian tribes. This bill may or may not also have the benefit of helping “poker only” ride along with other online gambling bills yet separate itself if necessary to distinguish its unique sector of the online “gambling” landscape.
Current draft of the new Barton Bill here — http://theppa.org/ppa/2013/07/11/pokerfreedomact/ — and media conference call about it next Tuesday:
Media Teleconference: Congressman Joe Barton and PPA’s John Pappas to Discuss New U.S. Internet Poker Legislation HR 2666
WHAT: On Tuesday, July 16, John Pappas, PPA’s executive director will be joined by Representative Joe Barton (R-TX) on a media teleconference to discuss Mr. Barton’s newly introduced bill, The Poker Freedom Act, to license and regulate Internet poker.
The bill mandates technologies to protect consumers from fraud and limits underage access, preserves state’s rights, and ensures Indian Tribes have the same rights to apply for a license as other entities.
WHEN: Tuesday, July 16, 2013, 11:00 AM EST
The poker community may or may not have lost its verve for writing checks to politicians only to sweat subcommittee hearings that in the end prove about as significant as WSOP Day 1s. But this combo of activity is indeed the start of something — a new baseline at least, as poker interests presumably have until the end of the year to make something happen before all special interests get told the same thing about what’s impossible during an election year.