There was no shortage of news last week around the world so lets look back at some of the biggest stories that snatched the headlines.
Authorities in Ferguson Missouri were forced to call in the National Guard as widespread rioting overwhelmed the beleagued police force following the jury verdict finding Officer Darren Wilson inculpable after the August 9th shooting that saw him gun down the unarmed black teenager Michael Brown. With buildings set ablaze and numerous arrests the riots mark a low point in the relationship between the almost entirely white police force and vastly black population they serve. Officer Darren Wilson then resigned from his position, a move that has done little to quell tension in the town.
The teenage daughters of President Obama came under fire from Republican Elizabeth Lauten who posted on Facebook following their appearance at the turkey pardoning ceremony alongside their father at the White House. “Dress like you deserve respect, not a spot at a bar.” She said of the 13 and 16 year old girls outfits, adding that she felt they lacked class but lamented, “your mother and father don’t respect their positions very much, or the nation for that matter. So I’m guessing you’re coming up a little short in the ‘good role model’ department.”. She then deleted the statement and apologized insincerely, much to the annoyance of the internet.
The Black Friday chaos proved to be a little less fraught this year as many stores tried to ease the rush by beginning their sales on Thanksgiving itself. As millions of Americans sat down to eat with their families and then went out to grab some early Christmas shopping bargains with very few instances of trouble, across the Atlantic in the UK (which doesn’t even celebrate thanksgiving) there were scenes of unbridled consumerist madness with the police being called to deal with trouble at several stores that began their sales at midnight and saw pandemonium break out upon opening their doors to the great British public.
In sport the Cricketing world paid its respects after the sad death of 25 year old Australian Phillip Hughes who died last week having been hit by the ball. The tragic accident has placed the first test between India and Australia, due to start on Thursday in Brisbane, in doubt and an already busy schedule may mean it won’t go ahead at all. Negotiations between the teams on the matter continued into the weekend and to find out if or when it goes ahead you’ll have to check our daily news pages regularly but in the meantime here’s some of the stories that hit our headlines last week.
1. Despite his conflict with Borgata, poker pro Phil Ivey has endorsed the casino’s new partner, the Pala Casino online gambling site.
2.The Florida Lottery has a bright future ahead. Lottery sales in the Sunshine State already reached an impressive $5.3 billion and now lawmakers are considering introducing online sales in the state.
3.Neteller co-founder’s biography was released. Readers could discover the story behind the successful and controversial John Lefebvre.
4.The recent casino cheating case involving US Navy Rear Admiral Timothy Giardani got everybody’s attention.
5.What seems to be holding back the growth in the Macau casino industry?
6.Favourit and EveryMatrix launched multi-lingual online and mobile platform to the delight of players.
7.The Polish government is considering reviewing their policies on international gambling operations.
Meanwhile the queen of the crime novel, PD James, died peacefully at the age of 94 in her Oxford home having written 20 books including “Children of Men” and the massively successful series featuring the detective Adam Dalgliesh that were adapted for television, and in Hong Kong protestors attempted to move on the Chief Executive’s office only to be met by batons, pepper-spray and water hoses from authorities tired of the softly-softly approach. Will there be more chaos on the streets of this gambling capital? You’ll have to check in with our daily news pages to find out.
17th to the 23rd of the month went fast and full: Scotland said ‘no’, choosing to stay in the UK, New York said ‘green’, marching for climate in record numbers, Milan said ‘wow’ hosting the Fashion Week. Europa League and Ryder Cup made fans say ‘I bet’ and Nintendo turned 125. What’s your saying on that?
Meanwhile, in the gambling sector we spotted great pieces of news as well. Check the week out in the following pictures!
A letter sent to the Directory of Social Change (DSC) announced that the UK Government refunded part of the Olympic Lottery Distribution Fund, GBP69 million to be more precise.
Before New Jersey players can legally enjoy the delights of betting, there are few more legal snags to take care of.
Ben Affleck admitted counting cards. The gambling tycoon from ‘Runner, runner’ either did a thorough research for the movie or he was ‘a natural’ for the part to begin with.
The Senet Group has become the watchdog of bookmakers in the UK, pledging to promote responsible gambling standards.
Europa League made its début with great matches and even greater betting opportunities, keeping fans connected for all the right reasons.
The ‘No, thanks’ campaign prevailed! After more than 300 years as part of United Kingdom, Scots vote ‘No’ in independence referendum, proving betting odds right.
Waiting for a ‘blue Sunday’ in Premier League! Odds and stats are keeping fans busy until then, when real football is set to steal the scene.
Yet so far no one has come forward to claim what would be the state’s biggest promotions, with a Winning Powerball Ticket cash prize of monsterous proportions. Officials are beginning to suspect that the USA Powerball Lotto ticket was lost, misplaced, or thrown away.
Officials are even asking folks to go look in drawers, purses, wallets, pockets or inside the car because the winning ticket just has a 180 day life, and after the six months are gone (on Wednesday April 30, 2012), the ticket will expire and become quite useless.
If the ticket is unsigned, then it’s the old “finders-keepers” rule, so just because you haven’t played, doesn’t mean that you can’t win if you happen to find the winning ticket and sign it first.
Overall odds of winning the USA Powerball Lotto jackpot prize are 1 in 195,249,054.
Good luck on your treasure hunt Connecticut!
A lucky married couple from North York in the State of New York won $15,347,907 from Lotto 6/49 after playing the same numbers each week for the past 30 years.
Despite looking as happy as if told the world will end in 10 minutes when stuck in traffic on the Brooklyn Bridge, the couple said they are smiling inside. Mama Mia! If they are smiling inside, they deserve an Oscar for Best Performance because I’ve seen a deer’s expression in the headlights one time, right before my new Mini Truck vaporized it, and the deer looked happier. I was on the way home to play a special tournament at Millionaire Casino, an excellent establishment.
The family has a ritual, every Sunday morning; they wake up and practice smiling. That’s a joke. Relax. Aye?!?
So, as I was saying, every Sunday morning, about 7a.m, the husband, Bob Maggiacomo, goes down to the corner bodega to check his numbers. He did it the past Sunday, and did not even win one dollar.
Then he takes a closer looks at the winning numbers, and he thinks them the same numbers his wife plays every week for 30 years. So he goes and wakes up his wife, Eleanor Canavan. Not even a hyphenated Maggiacomo-Canavan but plain old Canavan. No respect no more!
His wife plays a combination of their birthdays, and they look at the internet, and what do you know, they won! Well since it was Easter and all they had to wait till Tuesday. They signed the ticket and left it right there o the dresser in full sight. Now that’s not smart. If someone breaks in and finds such a rare artifact, and sign it they gotta dig a hole again or give him a third of the share.
I guess Shaquan, Vinny Ungats or Chivalos weren’t working that day because nobody stole it. They got the check on Tuesday, and are thinking of going to Nino’s for the sauce and linguine with 40 neighborhood friends. They said they plan to move to Bensonhurst in Brooklyn and live there retired.
So the moral of the story is, that you have to play to win! I play only at Millionaire Casino and win big. They use Vegas Technology, accept Americans and is one the most trusted names in the industry. They have a special promotion today, so go look, it hits the spot.
Two friends and co-workers from Indiana, who now describe themselves as retired welders, are splitting the $221.7 million dollar Powerball jackpot. The two buddies who have the appearance and demeanor of Abbot & Costello or Laurel & Hardy have been pooling $4 each Wednesday, playing the Hoosier Lotto for the past seven years that they’ve been working together at Munich Welding Inc.
On April 6, It was Darin Fox’s turn. The 32 year old unmarried welder (the skinny guy in the photo), who lives with his mama and enjoys hunting and super sized trucks was attracted by the 200 million dollar Powerball sign.
So this week on a lark, he decided to spend $2 on the regular Hoosier game and invest the other $2 for a Powerball ticket. Hel let the machine chose the numbers. “The sign with the amount was what made the decision for me to split it up,” Fox said Thursday.
When the next morning he saw the numbers hit he called in sick from work and has been on a vacation ever since. He called his buddy Todd Reardon, 38 and married with an 11 year old son who enjoys big trucks, hunting and cooks a mean BBQ, (the big guy in photo) who at first wouldn’t believe his friend.
“I said boy, boy you lying like a gutter snake in the chicken coop. You been smoking the devil lettuce again or hitting the hooch like that time you climbed on top of papy’s pig barn naked as a jaybird hollering that you is George Washington? Put your mama on the phone so she can slap some sense into your thick head,” said the ever joking newest multi-millionaire Mr. Todd Reardon.
The men took the lump sum payment and aftet feed and taxes, each received a cool $40,000,000 check. The men will owe additional taxes but have already hired lawyers, investment advisors and money managers to make sure they will never have to weld stainless steel toilets again.
Both winners only play single hand Jackpot Deuces video poker and enjoy playing online poker as well.The men said they plan to buy bigger trucks, homes for their families, and lots of hunting land.
Seven lucky Computer Geeks somehow figured out a way to crack the 176 million to 1 odds to win the monster $319 million Dollar Mega-Millions Lotto Jackpot.
The seven computer nerds, who work in Albany, New York for the Homes & Community Renewal Agency, are each expected to walk away with $19,100,000 in cash after taxes.
The yet unidentified ‘Lucky Seven’ are consulting financial planners, attorneys and are currently holed up at an undisclosed location. Sources report that the winners range in age from mid-twenties to mid-fifties, and include a 54-year old man who earns $75k a year, a 41 year old woman earning $85K a year.
Since lotto tickets are considered a ‘bearer instrument’, same as cash money, the lotto commissioner is advising the lucky winners to sign the winning ticket as quickly as possible. “If the owner lost an unsigned winning lotto ticket, the finder could simply sign it and claim the money,” the lotto commissioner said.
The winning ticket is safely deposited inside the vault of one of Albany’s largest banks, according to sources connected with the winners. The winners have up to 365 days from today’s date to claim the prize, which is the third largest in US History.
“Ninety-nine percent of the people coming in winners do it that way these days. Three-hundred and nineteen million is an unimaginable amount of money. Most want a plan before they get their hands on the money,” said state lottery spokeswoman Carolyn Hapeman.
A pair of huge draws on the weekend resulted in the proverbial “life-changing wins,” as the Powerball and Mega Millions lottery jackpots were each hit by a single player – though neither has stepped forward to claim the prize.
On Friday night, the Mega Millions numbers were drawn on a $54 million jackpot. Numbers 3, 4, 14, 18, 27 and 13 came up to make one lucky citizen of New York City very happy – if he/she is even aware of the win. The jackpot was reset and, with no winner in yesterday’s draw, the September 24 jackpot is estimated to be at $16 million.
Over the weekend, the turgid Powerball jackpot stood at a big $116 million before a customer of Heby’s Shell gas station in Mableton, Georgia, chose the winning numbers 1, 18, 37, 39, 44 and 13 – making the key final numbers in both draws a lucky 13, incidentally – but he/she, too, has yet to come forward and claim the prize as of Wednesday morning.
Heby’s Shell will be receiving a $25,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket and, should the player claim his/her winnings as a cash option, the ticket will be worth a tidy $63 million before taxes. The winner has 180 days to claim the big prize.
The last occasion on which a Georgia player won the Mega Millions jackpot was just over a year ago, with a $12 million payout going to a Sharpsburg man on September 1st of 2009.
Odds of 176 million to 1 were beat this weekend in San Luis Obispo County, California, when the Mega Millions jackpot of $133 million was won by … someone. The numbers 4, 10, 26, 31, 32, and 41 came up to produce a single winner of the record-breaking amount, but no one has stepped forward to claim the prize yet.
Though the $133 million is not the largest prize in the lottery ever – that honor goes to a woman from Southern California who took a $266 million jackpot in May – the win is the biggest ever in San Luis Obispo County.
Seller of the lucky ticket, an outlet known as Bottle Liquor and Deli, will receive a nice bonus of $665,000 for the win. The ticket-holder will be given the option of $92.4 million lump sum payment or payments of $5.11 million per year for 26 years.
California lottery spokesman Alex Traverso said that the winner may take up to 365 days to collect but “rarely do we have a jackpot winner [of a prize] this size wait more than a week.”
When Frank Sullivan hit the Tri-State Megabucks lottery sponsored by Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire state governments for $12.5 million, he knew exactly what to do – no wonder, as twice before family members have struck it rich.
The $12.5 million represents the largest single prize ever rewarded in the Tri-State Megabucks lottery since its establishment in 1985. The bad (though certainly manageable) news for Sullivan is that, since he’s a Vermont native who bought the ticket across the border in New Hampshire, he’ll be paying taxes on his winnings in two states. In taking the “lump sum” option, Sullivan will be banking over $5 million.
According to local media, one of the very first things the 52-year-old did – even before stepping up to claim his prize – was to give two weeks’ notice at his job at a local electronics supplier. He now reportedly carries around lip balm “for people that want money – They’ve gotta kiss up a little bit more” and a black book “for the marriage proposals.”
The store in Gilman where Sullivan bought the ticket will also be receiving $30,000 for selling the lucky jackpot winner.
NECN Online also reports that Sullivan had purchased tickets for last night’s Megabucks drawing – presumably he didn’t win that one, however…
Four winners shared in this weekend’s UK national lottery jackpot grand prize of £4.47 million, but none were as openly generous – or as young – as Stacey Bywater of Holmfirth, England. Stacey, who is 18 years old, was allowed by her parents to play the lottery after her last birthday, even though U.K. law says that anyone over 16 may win.
Bywater’s share ended up being exactly £1,117,779 (about $1.75 million), but British media is happily reporting that Stacey has level-headed plans for the money. First she says she’d like to help her mother and father get a bigger home, moving out of the council house they’re residing in now. She’ll at least be putting down the deposit on a mortgage for a new house.
Afterward, Stacey said she’d be buying herself a Mini Cooper convertible and perhaps a living space – but only for rent. “I’m only 18 and I don’t want to leave them yet,” she told local media outlets. “I don’t think it has sunk in that I’m a millionaire.”
The winning numbers chosen by Stacey and three others were 13, 16, 22, 25, 31 and 39. The total prize pool for last Saturday’s draw was over £14 million ($22 million).
In what South African National Lottery spokeswoman Thembi Tulwana is calling “another dream come true,” a 66-year-old man from Gauteng province has been awarded Saturday’s grand prize ZAR 10 million (about $1.38 million).
When claiming the prize, the man thought he had won a “second-division prize” in the lottery worth just under $15,000. Instead he found out he actually one the big one when rechecking the numbers. His reaction: “Unable to contain his disbelief, he broke down and cried hysterically,” according to representatives of Gidani, the Greece-based company running the lottery.
They went on to state that “He then called his wife of 43 years, whom he trusts entirely, to share the news.”
Though on the face of it, the grand prize doesn’t seem that huge, it’s quite an amazing windfall in a country where, as Wikipedia informs, “The median annual income of Black working adults aged 15-65 is ZAR 12,073 [$1,665].”
Once the man composed himself a bit, he told lottery officials that this prize meant financial independence, plus the opportunity to buy property for himself and his family’s caretaker, and possibly travel. “We will now be able to do things sooner rather than having to wait until we can afford to buy what we like,” he said.
The South African National Lottery started in 2000 and is today overwhelmingly the most popular form of gambling in the country: A study by the National Centre for the Study of Gambling in 2006 showed that 82% of citizens played the lottery and 53% did no other form of gambling.
When people talk about “life-changing” multi-million prizes in lottery draws, they’re definitely visualizing Elizabeth’s Choras-Hanna’s win of the Powerball Jackpot Prize in July.
Thirty-five year-old Choras-Hanna, who is currently an unemployed medical assistant, will presumably be toning down the job search a bit after claiming her $73.8 million win on Friday. Residing in Hollywood, Florida, Choras-Hanna becomes the state’s second-ever Powerball winner. Opting for a one-time payment rather than installments, Choras-Hanna collected $38,929,055.11 for the winning ticket.
The winning numbers were 20, 21, 27, 28, 56 and Powerball number 4.
“[My sister and I] always go grocery shopping at Publix together, and before we leave we buy one Florida Lotto and one Powerball Quick Pick ticket,” Choras-Hanna said. “The next day, I went to another Publix and had them check my tickets and discovered our ticket was the jackpot winner.”
Choras-Hanna will be sharing the winnings with her sister and her sister’s husband. Though the draw was actually held on July 10, Choras-Hanna said she waited to collect the prize while she and her family “got their affairs in order first.”
In last Friday’s draw, a single winner from Louisiana bought a ticket with a progressive jackpot worth $85.7 million; this winner has yet to claim the prize. The winning numbers were 1, 16, 17, 41, 57 and Powerball 15.
Imagine you just won a £7.7 million ($11.7 million) in a national lottery. What would be the first thing you did? Surely a minority would answer, “Immediately get back to work,” but that’s precisely what Ivan Westbury did after receiving the life-changing news last Sunday.
Westbury’s wife of 21 years, Susan, was at a local Tesco checking on her lottery ticket. Susan attracted a bit of attention as she had the ticket scanned by a cashier, who informed her they’d have to call the lottery commission for more information. The information imparted was that, yes, the Westburys had won £7,706,631 in the U.K. lottery – at which, Susan said, “I nearly passed out.”
Susan called her husband, who joined her at the store after leaving his lightning-protection business. The two whooped it up for a bit, but within the hour Ivan was back at work. In explaining his actions, the self-professed workaholic was quoted as saying, “I’ve got a passion about work […] and I just love what I do. I suppose you could call it sad but I haven’t had a day off for four years.”
The Westburys will now take that vacation, though it was planned before the couple bought the lottery ticket: They’ll be taking a day trip to Cornwall.
In hoping to celebrate their win that evening, the Westburys ironically found that they couldn’t afford to pay for some pub drinks in cash.
The couple has stated that they’ll be doing “normal lottery things” by making a few major purchases in addition to giving their children and grandchildren some money – and they’ll be leaving the business open.
For most people, winning a nearly $15 million lottery progressive jackpot would be the ultimate sign of good luck – but not a recent record-setting winner in Taiwan. Fearing “she would meet the same sorry fate as [lottery] winners in foreign countries she read about,” a woman in Taipei City waited nearly two months before finally deciding to step forward and claim her prize.
On April 8, a NT$480 million ($14.93 million) jackpot had been accumulated. After the draw, the Taiwan Lottery commission announced that a single winner in Taipei City had taken the big prize. But at home, that ticket buyer was simply in shock.
According to the Taiwanese official news agency, the winner’s “mind went blank for more than ten minutes after learning that she had won.” She could not sleep the night after finding out the news and in following days read a number of stories about multi-million dollar lottery winners going broke or meeting terrible fates after their jackpot wins.
Ultimately, the woman and her husband decided to claim the money after all – At 55 days past the draw, this was easily the Taiwanese record for the longest such period of time. After taxes, the prize will be worth about $11.95 million. The couple also stated that they would immediately be donating NT$1 million ($31,100) to charity.
An unnamed Floridan who purchased a ticket in Royal Palm Beach became the seventh winner of the nationwide Powerball lottery jackpot in 2010 when he or she matched all six numbers drawn to win the $73.9 million grand prize last Saturday.
The winning numbers were 20, 21, 27, 28, 56 and powerball 4, and the winner has 180 days to claim the prize. The Florida Lottery commission announced that the $73.9 million represents the third-large prize ever won in a Florida game and is the second Powerball jackpot awarded to a Floridian.
Since joining the game in January 2009, Florida has recorded more Powerball winners than any other state, paying out over $289 million in prizes to the lucky folks. The Powerball lottery is now played in 42 U.S. states, Washington D.C., and the Virgin Islands.
Three times in 2010, the Powerball jackpot has gone over $200 million; the year’s top winner so far is Chris Shaw of Missouri, who won $258.5 million in April. An unknown winner in Ohio enjoyed a $261.6 million windfall on June 2, while Sandra McNeil of New Jersey scored $211.7 million in March.
Other Powerball progressive jackpots won this year include the $141 million won by Frank Griffin of North Carolina in February; the $96.9 million shared by a pair of friends in Montana and an auto workers’ group in Michigan and Ohio on June 23; and an anonymous player in Arkansas, who won $25 million on January 2.
Powerball closed year 2009 holding onto a $128.6 payout that went unclaimed by whoever purchased the winning ticket in Kentucky.
One of this week’s top gambling news stories is about a Joan Ginther, a 63 year old Texan who is a very, very lucky woman. Just a few days ago, she spent $50 on a scratch card lottery ticket, and ended up winning a very impressive $10 million jackpot. She was happy, but she might not have been very surprised.
While most lottery players would be grateful to win such a large jackpot, for Ms Ginther, it is becoming a regular occurrence. This recent win is in fact the fourth seven-figure lottery jackpot she has won in the last 20 years.
Her first big win came back in 1993 when she won $5.4 million. After a long break, she won again in 2006, turning a $30 scratchie ticket into $3 million. Two year later, in 2008, Ms Ginther won for the third time, taking another $3 million from a lottery scratch ticket. Her latest win pushes her total lottery jackpot winnings to a massive $20.4 million.
Ms Ginther has not given any interviews, and is shunning the worldwide publicity that her luck has brought her. It is not known how she intends to spend the largest lottery jackpot she has won so far.
Lotteries are popular all around the world, but their prizes are usually limited to a particular state or a particular country. An alternative global jackpot system can be found online. They are called progressive jackpot games, and they can be played at most online casinos.
Progressive jackpots games, like major lotteries, are capable of paying out in the millions. These jackpots grow bigger as more players enjoy the games, since a small portion of each player’s wager is added to the prize. These progressive jackpots are tough to win, but the payouts can be life-changing.
In 2001, a class-action suit was filed against Loto-Québec. The suit was filed on behalf of 120,000 Quebecers who were seeking damages, claiming that Video Lottery Terminals operated by the group had led to addiction. An out-of-court settlement has finally been reached, with Loto-Québec agreeing to pay for addiction therapy expenses incurred between 1994 and 2002.
CBC News: Loto-Québec to pay for gamblers’ therapy
A class action suit launched in 2001 against Loto-Québec by addicted gamblers has come to a head. Loto-Québec must now pay for addiction therapy treatments for thousands of compulsive gamblers in the province, after the old suit was settled out of court.
The multimillion-dollar settlement was approved by the multimillion-dollar on Tuesday. Loto-Québec has agreed to pay for gamblers’ addiction therapy expenses incurred between 1994 and 2002, to an average of about $5,000 per claimant. The lawsuit will cost the gambling company estimated $50 million as they pay out to about 120,000 claimants in Quebec.
Sol Boxenbaum, an advocate of responsible gambling, said that the settlement falls short because it doesn’t establish any significant legal precedent that will help control problem gamblers.
“We had established that video lottery terminals had addictive features built right into them. In the settlement, the lawyers agreed that the machine does not cause the addiction. So, in other words, we have thrown away everything that we worked towards establishing,” he said.
Claimants have 18 months to request reimbursement for past therapy expenses.
Montrael Gazette: Settlement for gamblers: Court okays deal with Loto-Québec
Canada’s Quebec Superior Court approved a multimillion-dollar settlement on Tuesday between Loto-Québec and thousands of people with gambling problems. The agreement marks the end of a class-action lawsuit launched in 2001.
An estimated 119,000 pathological gamblers were seeking compensation. Justice Gratien Duchesne ruled the deal, settled out of court, is “just, fair, reasonable, appropriate and in the best interests of the members of the group.”
The agreement will see the Quebec government reimbursing claimants for addiction treatments and other fees to gamblers who underwent therapy between 1994 and 2002. The average reimbursement will be about $5000.
The province has been paying for the treatment for people suffering from compulsive gambling since 2002.
Loto-Québec said it is satisfied with the deal, because it clearly states that the VLT machines did not cause the gamblers’ addiction.
“We were proved right on the most fundamental argument,” said a Loto-Québec spokesman.
Lotto-Quebec: Loto-Québec satisfied with the class action settlement
Loto-Québec is satisfied by Québec Superior Court Justice Gratien Duchesne’s decision to approve the out-of-court settlement of the class action lawsuit that was launched by Québec City lawyer Jean Brochu in regards to video lottery terminals.
During the trial, proof was made that video lottery terminals are not the cause of compulsive gambling. This is a position that Loto-Québec has always defended, and was glad to see the plaintiff recognize the fact in the settlement.
For the sake of fairness, the Government of Québec has agreed to reimburse therapy fees for gamblers who were treated between 1994 and 2002. Claimants have 18 months to send in their receipts and claim reimbursement.
Loto-Québec, a state company that holds a monopoly over all legal gambling in the Canadian province, just got approval from the cabinet to offer online poker and sports betting services starting this fall. Local players already gamble online at foreign-based websites, and Loto-Québec hopes their new services will funnel some of the money spent back into the community.
The Montreal Gazette: Loto-Québec goes online
Loto-Québec is stepping into the lucrative industry of internet gambling with a plan to provide online poker and sports betting Quebecers at a new site that should go live before the end of the year.
The plan was just approved by Quebec cabinet, which sees this as a tool by which they can “cannibalize illegal gambling” sites in Canada. A new electronic platform will be created for Loto-Québec, B.C. Lottery Corp. and Atlantic Lottery Corp., which covers the four Atlantic Provinces.
Betting limits will be emplaced, especially in the poker part of the site. These limits will have to be high, however, if Quebec and its new poker partners hope to compete with existing online poker operations. But even with high limits, the new partnership is not guaranteed to lure players away from existing foreign-hosted sites
“I question whether there will be sufficient liquidity (number of players) to make the site popular and therefore profitable,” says Michael Lipton, a Toronto lawyer specializing in gaming law.
“The operators out there are miles ahead of these new entrants in terms of the number of games they offer and the liquidity. Some sites may have 20 or 30 million players … and poker games going on 24 hours a day,” he said.
The new site will only be accessible to Quebec residents who are physically within the province. Age verification will be carried out by a third party, using a complex process that could take days to complete. In extreme cases, the player may be required to show up in person.
CBC News: Loto-Québec to offer online gambling
Quebec’s state lottery corporation will launch its first online gambling site in September. It is a move that Loto-Québec hopes will millions of dollars to its annual revenue by 2013.
After Loto-Québec joins the online gambling world with poker and sports betting offerings, they stand to earn $50 million for the province over the next three years.
Critics are of course concerned about the idea of offering online gambling because of the effect it might have on gambling addicts.
“By increasing the offer, we increase the number of players,” said Dr. Richard Lessard, the director of Montreal Public Health. “And as we increase the number of players, the number of players with gambling problems will increase as well.”
Loto-Québec argues that nothing will change, since Quebeckers already have access to more than 2,000 online gambling sites that are “illegal, unregulated and often of doubtful integrity.”
Loto-Québec president and CEO Alain Cousineau says,”This is a way for us to channel the gaming offering in a controlled circuit and environment whose integrity will be beyond reproach,” Cousineau said.
The new gambling site will require players to verify their age, limit their weekly deposits, and allow players to “self-exclude at all times,” Cousineau added.
Loto-Québec is already working with its counterparts in British Columbia and Atlantic Canada to develop the site. The three entities hope to share a common gaming platform that will allow players to enjoy online poker across provincial borders.
CTV News Montreal: Loto-Quebec to get into online gambling business
Loto-Quebec just received approval from the Province’s government to offer online gambling services.
The provincial gambling monopoly will work together with the British Columbia and Atlantic Lottery Corporations to set up an online gambling site this fall.
Online gambling across Canada currently generates more than $600 million every year, but most of this money is fed to foreign-based gambling companies.
It is estimated that Quebecers currently have access to more than 2,000 unregulated online gaming sites, including many that are hosted from the Kahnawake Mohawk reserve.
Loto-Quebec president and CEO Alain Cousineau says his agency has been trying for years to fight foreign online gambling sites, but has instead decided to compete with them.
The Loto-Quebec site will be based on the Swedish national lottery model. “In the first four hours when the Swedish poker got online, they got 20 per cent of the market,” said Cousineau.
A new style of lottery tickets has emerged in China. The tickets bear colorful portraits of the ancient philosopher Confucius, along with proverbs form his work The Analects. If the proverbs on a ticket match those drawn by lottery operators, the player wins a cash prize. The new lottery is bringing a lot of criticism by people who find this use of Confucius’ teachings distasteful.
China Daily: Confucius lottery tickets draw ire
Confucius was a Chinese philosopher who encouraged people to seek their fortunes in a noble manner. Ironically, his portrait and words of wisdom can now be found printed on lottery tickets, which are the only form of gambling allowed by the Chinese government.
Last month, lottery vendors in China’s Shandong province started selling these new Confucius tickets which offer a top prize of 300,000 yuan (about $44,000).
The new lottery tickets have enraged bloggers and columnists across the internet who claim that the lottery tickets are tarnishing the image of the wise man who lived more than 2,000 years ago.
Lottery officials are surprised. Tang Nianbing, a manager at Shandong’s lottery center, defended the company against accusations that they are using Confucius to promote sales. “The center is not trying to influence the sale of their lotteries (by using Confucius’ image), ” he said.
“The Confucius-themed lotteries are the country’s most real culture-centered tickets,” wrote Tang in an article that introduced the lottery. “Its cultural content will erect a milestone in the development of our country’s lotteries.”
The Shandong area was home to Confucius about 2,500 years ago. Several different tickets from the Shandong lottery center of are printed with the cultural themes from region.
The Washington Post: Critics question wisdom of Confucius-brand lottery
China’s official lottery is now offering Confucius-themed lottery tickets adorned with colorful drawings of the ancient philosopher. The tickets have promoted discussion over whether the combination of gambling and his teachings is appropriate.
According to the lottery’s website, the Confucius tickets are intended to teach players about ancient Chinese culture, and to help people live a “healthy, wholesome life.” The site also reports that the Ministry of Finance approved the program, which launched last week in Confucius’ hometown of Qufu.
Critics of the program see gambling standing at odds the spirit of Confucius’ teachings. One anonymous critic on a Chinese forum cited a Confucian proverb, “The gentleman sees righteousness, the petty man sees profit.”
This state-run lottery is the only form of gambling allowed in China. A single Confucius-themed ticket costs 10 yuan (about $1.50) and scratching the ticket reveals a quote from “The Analects,” a compilation of the philosopher’s works. The grand prize ticket is worth 300,000 yuan ($44,000) and will read, “Of all rituals, harmony is the most valuable.”
Global Times: Confucius is a brand name in hometown lottery promo
A picture is worth a thousand words in China’s first welfare lottery based on the ancient philosopher Confucius. His picture and words can also be worth 300,000 yuan ($43,936) if they appear on a winning lottery ticket.
A portrait of Confucius along with sayings of the legendary philosopher show up on lottery tickets that went on sale last week in Qufu, the hometown of Confucius, located in East China’s Shandong Province.
Each ticket is printed with proverbs from The Analects, Confucius’ most famous work. If the sayings on a player’s ticket match the ones drawn by the lottery center, the player wins cash.
The top prize lottery ticket, worth 300,000 yuan ($43,936), will read, “Of all rituals, harmony is the most valuable.”
China’s lottery center believes these new tickets can help educate people about the wisdom of Confucius, but many commenters think it is distasteful to use the ancient philosopher’s words and portrait for profit.
Tang Nianbing, who works in the marketing office of the Shandong Welfare Lottery Center, believes the tickets are a valuable teaching tool. “Everyone in China knows Confucius and The Analects, but not everyone can recite three sentences from it,” said Tang. “People who buy lottery tickets will have a chance to remember several sentences from The Analects, which is a win-win situation.”
Not everyone agrees. An internet poll conducted on a popular Chinese website showed that out of 1,869 voters, 52.6 percent disapproved of a Confucius-themed lottery. Only 4.2 percent were undecided.