Category Archives: Advertising

‘Leave it Be: Until Amendment Three’ – Florida’s Voters in Charge Amendment Group Releases New TV Spot while it sees Overwhelming Local Support for the Ballot Measure

Casino Watch Focus has reported on the ongoing progression of the Voters in Charge Amendment , with the most resent update reporting enough signatures had been collected to guarantee it would appear on the ballot. Since then, a very telling poll was released that showed overwhelming support for the amendment, now officially known as Amendment 3. Florida Politics reports: 

Lawmakers, take note: More than three-quarters of likely Florida voters favor a proposed state constitutional amendment “that would require voter approval to authorize casino gambling in the state,” according to poll results released Thursday.

“When initially asked about the amendment, 76 percent of respondents supported it, compared to 19 percent in opposition,” a press release said. “After hearing a balanced dose of arguments both for and against Amendment 3, support for the measure increased to 84 percent with only 14 percent opposed.”

“For nearly a century, it was voters—not politicians—who decided whether to authorize casino gambling in our state,” said John Sowinski, chairman of Voters In Charge, the group sponsoring the amendment. “Voters overwhelmingly support Amendment 3 because it will return control of casino gambling decisions back to the people, rather than gambling lobbyists and Tallahassee politicians.”

On the heals of such overwhelming support, Voters in Charge released their first television advertisement in support of Amendment 3 with the campaign slogan, Leave it Be: Until Amendment 3. The commercial can be viewed on YouTube HERE

 

 

 

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Multiple Anti-Gambling Expansion Ads Surface in Opposition of Florida’s New Gambling Expansion Bill

Casino Watch Focus has reported on the ongoing opposition this year’s early gambling expansion legislation in Florida that would legalize mega-resort, full-scale, Vegas-style gambling casinos. Several groups have already been vocal with their opposition and now multiple television ads have been released. The first television ad is outlined in a Busineswire Press Release:

No Casinos, Inc. has unveiled a new 30-second ad, “New Deal,” that outlines the historic expansion of gambling proposed in House Bill 1233, which was introduced March 2, 2015 by Rep. Dana Young (R-Tampa).

The video details how the bill benefits so many in the gambling industry, to the detriment of Florida and its citizens. Among the bill’s broad-reaching proposals: out-of-state and foreign gambling conglomerates win the ability to build mega Las Vegas-style casinos; dog and horse tracks and frontons outside of South Florida win a new gambling game, dubbed “historical racing,” that plays like a slot machine; and tracks and frontons in South Florida win a lower tax rate.

Who loses? Florida’s image, communities and taxpayers. Statistics from the Florida Council on Compulsive Gambling show that nearly one-third of callers to its HelpLine admit to committing crimes to support their gambling addiction. Simply put, more gambling equals more addicts equals more crime. And taxpayer dollars cover the cost.

The second set of television spots seeks to support the existing Seminole Compact that offers exclusive rights for tribal gambling. The Sunshine State News reports:

The leadership of the business community stepped up on Monday to go to bat for the Seminole Gaming Compact while urging Florida to limit expanded casino operations in the Sunshine State.

The Seminole Tribe of Florida released a new TV ad on Monday featuring Mark Wilson, the president and CEO of the Florida Chamber of Commerce, and Carol Dover, the president and CEO of the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association, calling to support extending the compact which is up in July.

“Florida is changing, which is why we need to extend the compact and limit gambling,” Wilson said. “Changing it could lead to the expansion of gambling, which simply is unacceptable for a state that has worked hard to grow its economy and develop a family-friendly image.”

 

 

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION


Lenders factoring in Online Gambling in the Mortgage Process

Casino Watch Focus has repeatedly reported on the impacts of online gambling. Most stories have centered on the legal battles to keep online gambling illegal.  However, online gambling stories are now reaching far beyond the political fights as illustrated by the report of Facebook changing their gambling advertising policies. Now, an online source is reporting that social networking isn’t the only industry to look at online gambling, as banks are now factoring in such activities into their mortgage approval process:

Anyone looking to become approved for a mortgage may want to curb their betting habits. It has been reported that lenders are now taking into account betting transactions that are made on an applicants bank account. The most common form of these transactions is online gambling sites.

One of the reasons that financial institutions look into the gambling activity, according to Chief Executive of Mortgage Debt Advisory Firm Negotiate Trevor Grant, is that most people coming looking for a loan, should be tightening their extraneous spending. Gambling, says Grant, is considered to be a red flag that the applicant may not have self control.

The banking industry isn’t just looking at new mortgages either.  Lenders are being especially hard on those looking to refinance or restructure their loans.  Lenders view refinancing as a sign the borrow is having trouble paying and managing their finances and online gambling expenses are then being viewed as a poor allocation of the borrows money.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION


Facebook to Ban Online Gambling Advertisements in US

Casino Watch Focus has reported on many of the ongoing online gambling battles both locally and abroad.  Most reports have focused on which states were entertaining legalizing online poker, but others have looked at the impact of national laws on international companies. A new international company to look at revamping their business practices due to national online gambling laws is Facebook.  An online source is reporting that Facebook is banning online gambling advertisements in jurisdictions that make online gambling illegal:

Recently, Facebook has started to clamp down on different forms of advertising. Online gambling is one of those areas addressed in the most recent update. One site that will be prohibited from advertising on Facebook will be Full Tilt Poker. The company recently lost their gaming license in Alderney after falling behind on payments. The online poker site also has closed its doors to customers since Black Friday in the US, when executives for the site were indicted. Other online poker sites, including PokerStars, will be allowed to advertise on Facebook.

One of the clarifications that Facebook has made regarding their online gambling advertising, is the company can only promote their product outside the US. The US has online gambling prohibition in place, and Facebook is ensuring they are not promoting something that the government deems illegal.

The Internet gambling laws in the US could change in the coming months with many lawmakers pushing a bill that would regulate online poker. If online poker became regulated in the country, Facebook would likely change their advertising policies once again to allow companies to promote their online poker sites to US citizens.   

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION


Penny Auctions Sites: the New Online Gambling Risk?

Many websites are advertising incredible and unbelievable deals on expensive products such as High-definition Televisions, Apple iPads, GPS’ and even high-dollar gift cards at a fraction of their cost.  Known as Penny Auctions, these sites have consumers bid on these items until the time runs out and the person who placed the last bid wins.  It sounds like normal eBay-type auction sites, so how do  they work or differ?  The Delaware News Journal explains the process:

The auction is announced on the website. Typically, hundreds or even thousands of auctions are held simultaneously. The terms of the auction are detailed, for example, a six-hour auction with each bid adding 1 cent to the price. Each additional bid made in the last 20 seconds of the auction resets the clock to 20 seconds remaining. Bidding often is slow until the waning minutes. With 20 seconds to go, the top bid might be only $1 or $2. But every time the clock nears zero, another bidder ups the price by a penny. Finally, only one bidder remains, and he or she wins the iPad, which has a list price of $500, for whatever the final tally is, maybe $25.

This process seems harmless enough, but how can the company make any money selling a $500 retail item such as an iPad and still make money?  There’s a catch, a very costly and potentially dangerous catch.  Each bid placed costs money, typically between 50 cents and two dollars depending on the site.  So unlike eBay where the losers of the auction simply lose out on the product, each and every person who places a bid is at risk of losing their money. The News Journal further explains the iPad example:

Since every bid costs 50 cents, and it took 2,500 bids to reach $25, the auction site takes in $1,275 ($1,250 in bids plus the $25 winning bid). Assuming the site paid full retail price for the iPad, it makes a $775 profit.  The winning bidder gets the iPad for $25 plus the cost of the bids he or she made and shipping. The other bidders, some of whom may have spent $100 or more on bids, walk away empty-handed.

But even the winner might not come out ahead of the game, advocates suggest. Say the winner bid $25 and used $50 in bids. At $75 for a $500 iPad, that still seems like a good deal. But that doesn’t take into account all the money in bids the winner spent in auctions he or she didn’t win. Add that in, and the deal might not be so good. In fact, it could mean that he or she spent more than the retail cost of the iPad. “It is just a gimmick. They get you caught up in it. It is like gambling.”

The psychology of Penny Auctions functions the same as the lottery or slot machines, put in a little to win a lot.  People will also chase after an auction because they have invested money and don’t want to lose it, just like they do with slot machines or with a poker hand.  Penny Auctions are simply gambling at the core and the consequences can be just as addictive and devastating.  These sites have been called gambling sites disguised to look like a typical auction, the dangers are just as real, and this might be just the beginning of a new potential gambling risk:

In November, an Oregon man filed a federal lawsuit alleging that one of the largest auction sites, Quibids.com, was really a gambling site masquerading as an auction site. The suit seeks class-action status and asks for damages for everybody who lost money at the site.

Brian Kongszik, help-line director for the Florida Council on Compulsive Gambling, said penny auctions really are thinly disguised gambling sites. “They are risking something in an event of uncertain outcomes, which is gambling,” he said. Kongszik said the council had only had a few calls from people seeking help because of penny auctions. Still, he said, he could definitely see the attraction for problem gamblers. “I can see people losing a significant amount of money on these and getting caught up in it, in the rush. It is a rush.”

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION


Missouri expands gambling through bingo

Last year Casino Watch Focus reported that the Missouri legislature passed a new bingo gambling bill, but Gov. Nixon vetoed it.  At the end of this year’s legislative session, the politicians are trying to expand gambling again, but this time they are not pulling any funds away from education – Gov Nixon’s primary reason for vetoing the bill.  The News Tribune reports the details:

Missouri lawmakers have passed a bill intended to boost the business of Missouri bingo halls.

Legislation sent to the governor Wednesday would allow bingo parlors to open earlier, close later and offer games twice a week instead of just once. It also lets bingo operators spend up to 10 percent of their receipts on advertising. The limit is now 2 percent.

Supporters say the measure is meant to help bingo halls compete with casinos and other forms of entertainment. In the past 15 years, the number of organizations licensed to run regularly scheduled bingo games has fallen by more than half.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION


Illinois looking to legalize online horse betting

Illinois is known for its diverse gambling venues. Everything from a state lottery to full casino gambling is legal in the state. Now, Illinois is looking to expand its horse betting business to the Internet.  An Illinois news source is reporting of the State’s latest attempt at solving budgetary problems with an expanded gambling plan:

Gambling on horse races on the Internet could become legal for Illinoisans as early as Wednesday.  The Illinois Racing Board is scheduled Tuesday to weigh giving three companies state licenses to handle online bets. If those companies are approved Tuesday, gamblers could use the approved Web sites to wager on horses from the comfort of their own homes as early as Wednesday.

Soon, the approved companies could start advertising, and Brubaker said he hopes the state will step up enforcement on non-licensed Web sites.

Estimates suggest the online betting could bring the state $1.5 million in additional revenue.  Opponents of online horse betting, though, argued letting people gamble online could lead to addiction and other problems.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION