Posts Tagged ‘PayPal’

Zynga Tries to Patent Virtual Casino Currency

An attempt to *own* social media gambling transactions?

by , Oct 29, 2010 | 10:00 am

In last Friday’s twitfeed, my favorite tech-biz site Tech Crunch tweeted about their post  “Is Zynga Trying To Patent Virtual Currency?” Apparently, the leviathan of multiplayer gaming networks — and big wildcard in the future of real-money online poker — filed a US Patent Application in March of this year in an effort to corner the virtual currency market.

At least that’s my take. After reading the actual legal document, “Virtual Playing Chips in a Multiuser Online Game Network”, I gather what they are really trying to do is define and patent the purchase and flow of “Non-Redeemable Virtual Currency” as it pertains *specifically* to gambling on social networks.


click to enlarge


Google Prepping for Legalized Internet Gambling

by , Aug 5, 2010 | 5:20 pm

google_chocolate_poker_chipsInternet super-behemoth Google seems to be wasting little time positioning themselves to profit from licensed internet gambling in the United States by investing in “social gaming”.  Both the New York Times and Techcrunch are reporting that Google has agreed to purchase “Slide”, a software development company specializing in Facebook apps involving the exchange of virtual money.

Sale price estimates range from $182 million to $228 million (in real money). Supposedly, Google will officially announce the acquisition tomorrow.

This follows last week’s quiet confirmation from Google CEO Eric Schmidt about their partnership with Zynga — clarifying speculative reports in July that Google had “secretly” invested $150 million or so in the enormous play-money poker site.

With a current user base of 28 million budding poker degens at the ready, Zynga is primed for real-money poker with their popular Facebook app Texas HoldEm Poker. You can read more about Zynga’s interest in HR 2267 from Business Insider: JACKPOT FOR ZYNGA: Congress Wants To Legalize Online Gambling.

Conveniently, Zynga uses PayPal for a method of payment (and happens to be PayPal’s biggest client).  This method of payment — turned off years ago for anything related to gambling — could be ideal for a would-be internet gambling licensee under HR 2267 with Barney Frank’s Manager’s Amendment, which prohibits credit card transactions for gambling should his bill become law.

Video Game Tourneys for Real Money Coming (Very!) Soon

by , Aug 3, 2009 | 3:20 pm

Not sure yet where to begin … and while the concept of playing competitive video-game tournaments online for real money isn’t exactly new (FIFA interactive World Cup, eg) … it’s apparently about to get a whole lot easier.

The site is called, and will be legal in 39 US states. (Like holy fugk, you can even transfer funds via PayPal!)

BringIt plans to make money on a rake — pretty much just like poker — as well as some fund withdrawal processing fees. The Associated Press on the legality of it all here.

Depending on how all this shakes down, game of luck vs. skill definitives will be even more relevant than before … and at a minimum may open a new window for online poker to distinguish itself from online gambling. The online (non-poker) gaming sites that will inevitably spring up should BringIt actually bring it, meanwhile, will have to deal with all the same regulatory stuff that we want to deal with to protect fairness, ensure integrity, disable cheat codes, etc.

Still too early to tell. And BringIt is only supposed to go live in low-stakes Beta this week. But it should be a very interesting site to watch …

(Thanks @MSomm for the tip.)

Microsoft Begins Dealing with Online Cheaters

by , Mar 26, 2008 | 2:01 am

Microsoft, we know, likes to fight … and the company fired their first shot against cheaters in their online Xbox Live community by conducting a little neighborhood sweep. They aren’t banning players, but instead dropping their player points down to zero and marking their profiles with the digital equivalent of a scarlet C. Not sure how that would work in poker … but it shows the relevance of poker issues in a non-poker world, and perhaps suggests some potential allies who have an interest our fights. Online gam(bl)ing and online gaming, after all, aren’t that far apart.

Online video game competitions for money are already in play — the Fifa Interactive World Cup, for example, awards $20k to the winner. And the shoot-em-up game Kwari has started offering real-money competition, where you win cash for kills and the house takes its cut by charging you for ammo. Bullets, chips … tomato, D’amato … Seriously, how familiar does this sound:


Poker Everywhere Else

by , Mar 12, 2008 | 9:31 pm

Eliot Spitzer: Strong means weak.

A key player in getting PayPal not to accept gambling-related transactions … taken down by the exchange of virtual money he tried to stop.