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Online Gambling Cause Gathers Growing Mass Media Attention

A story by the Wall Street Journal shows the debate over regulation of online gambling is becoming a mainstream issue, something bound to help get Barney Frank's bills passed, says a gaming expert.

Many experts on US politics have commented that, despite the general public's acceptance of gaming and willingness to allow online casinos to be regulated, the issue did not generate enough enthusiasm in a large enough group to become important to federal lawmakers. But mainstream media coverage of the issue is growing, as the reporting on poker lobbyists visiting Washington in yesterday's Wall Street Journal demonstrates.

Although polls show a vast majority of US residents would vote to allow online gambling if forced to pick a side, in the past the only sizable group making the issue a predominant concern were the religious radicals opposed to all gambling. Even though heavily outnumbered, the far right has been able to get legislation passed based on their passion for the subject, however erroneous their facts.

But continuing exposure by sources such as the Journal shows the Internet gambling topic is heating up in mainstream America. The organization of the Poker Players Alliance, coupled with the publicity received by the recent World Series of Poker, has revealed to news outlets and politicians alike that there are great masses of people on the side of legalized, regulated Internet gambling.

"The in-depth reporting by "Sixty Minutes" and the Washington Post on the online poker scandals introduced the topic to many US residents who didn't know there is an ongoing debate about online gambling," says Online Casino Advisory gaming analyst Sherman Bradley. "Since then, the assertions by Barney Frank about the right of US citizens to freedoms has made the issue a popular story in many newspapers, and captured the notice of those to whom gambling, per se, is not a big attention-getter."

As mainstream coverage increases, Bradley says, the less likely a small segment of radicals are able to manipulate legislators into voting against liberty and the will of the people.

"Education of society as to the issues and the facts can only work toward legalizing and regulating online gambling."

Published on July 21, 2009 by JoshuaMcCarthy

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