Online sports betting and online casinos have been a reality in the Keystone State for over a month now and it is every bit as exciting as many of the state’s residents expected it to be. The state’s online gambling sector was among the most anticipated ones in the United States and now that it is live, there is certainly a lot to look forward to. Pennsylvanians no longer have to go to a physical sportsbook to place bets on their favorite sporting activities or even play their favorite online casino games. All this can now be done online and on mobile – so long as you have a reliable internet connection, that is.
As the gambling sector continues to grow, the Pennsylvanian gaming authorities continue to enforce the gaming laws and regulations that were passed alongside the expanded gambling laws. Now, when it comes to online gambling, the state’s residents are allowed to indulge in the activity virtually everywhere within the state’s borders except for one place: within the land-based casinos.
This is all thanks to the provision of Title 4 which states that:
“An interactive gaming certificate holder or interactive gaming operator shall prevent registered players within a licensed facility from accessing authorized interactive games on the registered player’s own computers or other devices through the use of geospatial technologies.”
Basically, this means that no form online casino gaming is allowed at land-based casino facilities even if the online gaming site belongs to the physical casino. Trying to access online casinos while at the land-based gaming locations may lead to the suspension of user accounts.
When it comes to sports betting in Pennsylvania, online sports bettors will be able to place bets on online sportsbooks or sports betting apps but this is on condition that they are not directly integrated with any online casino in the state.
Is It Working?
Clearly, the geo-fencing technology service that the state is using to manage its online gaming sector is working as expected. The state has certainly gone out of its way to ensure that its online gambling laws are being followed to the latter.
Even so, the reasoning behind this particular provision has been criticized by a number of industry experts. One of the most notable arguments in this regard states that the law is trying to solve a non-existent problem especially considering the fact that online casinos are additive to the casinos’ bottom lines. In fact, most players usually try to register on online casino sites during on-property visits at the land-based facilities. Besides, there is no guarantee that restricting on-property online gambling will protect the physical casinos from being cannibalized by their online counterparts.