Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Is DFS Helping or Hurting?

Daily fantasy sports were already of great interest to poker players even before all of the hubbub began surrounding the industry not quite two weeks ago. Since then, DFS has attracted the attention of many others, too, including the mainstream media, legislators, and even the Federal Bureau of Investigation according to a report appearing late today in The Wall Street Journal.

I was writing last week about how the histories of online poker and daily fantasy sports have intersected and (in a few ways) even paralleled one another. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 that played an integral role in removing online poker as an option for most U.S. players also made online gambling on fantasy sports possible, which in turn led to the birth and eventual growth of DFS into a highly conspicuous option available to those in all but a small handful of states.

As the probing of DFS continues, I can’t help but believe it hurts the prospects for online poker in the U.S. a lot more than it helps. But I could be wrong.

I’ve seen a few folks suggesting how the calls for federal regulation and other inquiries into DFS could eventually lead to a revisiting of online gambling laws in the U.S., including the UIGEA, with some change on the federal level regarding online poker being a possible consequence. But to me it looks more like online poker will get buried further underneath the weight of moral outrage at DFS and the “loophole” it has found to permit legal online gambling (as some view it).

What do you think? When it comes to the future of online poker in the U.S., is DFS helping or hurting?

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