Poker Players Alliance downplays UIGEA
With the June 1st deadline upon us, as US poker players we are now faced with the full brunt of UIGEA legislation. The legislation passed in 2006, and was scheduled to take effect in December of 2009, but was delayed 6 months to give lawmakers a chance to pass legislation to regulate the online gaming industry.
In a recent Card Player article, PPA director John Pappas tried to downplay the effect UIGEA will have on the online poker market in the United States saying, “Many people believe that any ill effect of the UIGEA has already been felt over the last four years… While I can’t make any guarantees, I do have a sense that this will be more of a blip on the radar screen than a catastrophic event, as some may have predicted.”
One piece of news that goes against Mr. Pappas was when a few days before UIGEA legislation was enacted Poker Time, a small online poker room decided to withdraw from the US market; citing UIGEA legislation as the cause. So, in the end the UIGEA’s effectiveness will come down to enforcement: If the feds decide to go after a number of payment processors or banks still processing transactions from online gaming we could see a full-fledged exodus from the US market, as the online poker sites simply cannot make good on frozen or seized funds indefinitely.
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