Neteller Update

by , Mar 22, 2007 | 6:54 am

Neteller says to Americans: Don’t worry, you’ll get your money back we’re trying to get you your money back (at least some of it).

According to yesterday’s press release, Neteller has signed agreements with the US Attorney’s Office and some forensic accountants with Navigant Consulting. The plan: To have a plan in about 75 days.

Sounds good, I suppose. But as one of many Americans (does anyone know an actual number?) whose Neteller money has been seized by the Feds, I’m not banking on much. In fact, read the Neteller FAQ … I know they’re just playing it conservatively, most likely on the advice of counsel, but really, at least a few things are a little bothersome, not just because I want my $520. First, there is no reassurance that, yes, you will definitely get all your money back. They talk about coming up with a plan to “distribute” funds … but really, what does that mean? We’re not looking for you to come up with a socialist system for spreading around a portion whatever capital you have on hand … we are looking for access to our own kizzash, yo!

OK, OK, I know, this is really more on the US Attorney’s office than Neteller, but let’s call a spade a spade. We ain’t gonna see our money in time to use it for the WSOP.

The agreements reached between NETELLER, the USAO, and Navigant pave the way for that process to be established.

Ah, so really, it’s more that you have a plan to have a plan to have a plan. Ah, OK, thanks for clarifying. Long time no money see. Gotcha.

Here’s what irks me about this situation — and it should irk everyone, not just poker players, or at least raise some eyebrows about the future of online commerce. Why do they need the actual/virtual money? When cops raid a drug den (or poker room), they confiscate the money because it is hard, concrete evidence. But in the Neteller case, there is no money, no cash, no physical nothing to actually seize. They’ve got all the records of transactions … so why can’t they let the cash go?

I mean cash doesn’t really exist online … but it exists somewhere. Is this the sort of jurisdiction we want to give American authorities in cyberspace?

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