iMEGA, an association dedicated to the continued growth and innovation of the Internet was back in court earlier this week in the matter of iMEGA v Gonzales, et al. The group argues that the federal law currently in place, making it illegal for people to transmit online bets outside the United States, violates people's rights to gamble in the privacy of their own homes.
On Wednesday, Sept 26th, iMEGA president Edward J. Leyden had this to say: "Based on the decision of the U.S. District Court earlier today, iMEGA eagerly awaits the action of the Honorable Mary L. Cooper and the Court. We agree that children and problem gamblers need protection. We know that technology is available that will accomplish this. This law - in addition to being defective and unconstitutional - will not provide greater protections. In fact, it will only make these groups more vulnerable."
Oral arguments were entertained on Wednesday and the Judge expects to make a ruling in the next 30 days.
IMEGA emphasizes that the Federal Law is very limiting because the government is losing out on all the revenue of the online gaming market. Why is it okay that we can go to Atlantic City, Las Vegas, and other casinos to gamble, but we can't play poker online? The government argues that they are protecting the children and placing safeguards on the industry, but in fact, many of us disagree.
From the IMEGA website, "These regulations, if promulgated, would stifle online innovation and commerce; inadequately protect children by failing to ensure adequate safeguards; have a chilling effect on the privacy rights of individuals; and potentially lead to the loss of thousands of U.S. white collar jobs".
Leyden is pushing for the government to regulate and tax the online gaming market, but as of right now, the law is firm, gambling online is illegal and they aren't backing down.
All eyes are on the honorable Mary L. Cooper as we await her decision.