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Author Topic: UK Gambling Commission says UK based sites need a license!  (Read 11523 times)
groozh
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June 18, 2015, 02:02:59 PM
 #41

The UK Gambling Commission has written to online sportsbooks, bookmakers and casinos telling them to block anyone with a UK IP address.
Already, Direct Bet and the Fairlay Bitcoin betting exchange have implemented this today.
It's outrageous.

Are Direct Bet and the Fairlay Bitcoin UK based?

If not, why are they blocking UK IPs?

I don't understand why everyone seems to be taking orders from the UK Gambling Commission all of a sudden without any explanation to end users.

Any more details on this would be appreciated.

Regardless of where the bookies are based, its customers are British. That's why they're only blocking UK IPs, and bitcoin sites are only following the other foreign bookmakers (188bet, sbobet, pinnacle) in leaving Britain since the new gambling laws require them to register under the UKGamingCommission's licensing system (and pay a hefty tax). The idea behind this is to protect British consumers apparently, though anyone who knows the first thing about betting knows you cannot win using British bookmakers alone. And I'd wager (no pun intnded) that there are fifa levels of corruption going on behind the scenes

My point is, why are any sites blocking British IPs just because the UK gambling commission said so? Especially if they are outside of the UK, what can a UK gambling commission really do about it? How do you even prove that;

1) A cryptocurrency is equivalent to money's worth
2) An IP is equivalent to a location
3) An anonymous transaction is linked to a person in the UK and a gambling related server
4) A gambling commission in the UK has control over a server outside of the UK

None of these things have been held up in court and, especially if you are outside of the UK, how do you even get summoned to a UK court of law?

Basically, if sites start blocking IPs any time any random commission decides so then there is no point to using cryptocurrency. If anyone, from any side, honestly thinks that banning UK IPs resolves a problem here then they are seriously short-sighted. It will just censor the mainstream from cryptocurrency, and other commissions from other countries will soon start telling other sites to do the same with other services.

Ultimately the only ones who will continue to use cryptocurrency will be using VPNs without the site's consent and causing more problems down the line. Frankly the fact that no one is seriously challenging this is disastrous to the survival of cryptocurrency. It has set the trend for the future. Cryptocurrency sites are happy to provide censorship of their services at the first sign of fear without even really questioning it.

There is no longer any point in using them.

You're absolutely right. The thing is, although there will be very little repercussion for directbetif they continued serving Brit IPs, I think they see it as not worth the hassle. The UKGC perhaps has them a little bit scared and they're protecting their business. Their lack of comment on the issue just confirms this. It's a slippery slope once bitcoin, a decentralized currency, starts to be ruled over like this

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June 18, 2015, 04:11:02 PM
 #42

It's a slippery slope once bitcoin, a decentralized currency, starts to be ruled over like this

Indeed it is!

For what it's worth, allegedly, you can use the Tor browser from the UK and get around the problem.
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eerygarden
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June 18, 2015, 06:10:48 PM
 #43

What gets my goat about this the most is that they requst a fee for a license using threats of imprisonment if an operator does not comply and in turn offer no protection to the punters whatsoever. The protection to the operator is that the police will leave them in peace to operate.

Bitcoin may appeal a lot to anarchists and libertarians but it does nothing, nor will it ever, for reducing socially dominant human beings. Its a jungle.

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June 18, 2015, 06:29:25 PM
 #44


Bitcoin may appeal a lot to anarchists and libertarians but it does nothing, nor will it ever, for reducing socially dominant human beings. Its a jungle.
Bitcoin allows you to gamble and access these sites if they are illegal in your country. For example US players can't play much poker online but can do so with bitcoin. Thats the biggest reason people use it as you are not restricted to laws based in your country that may not allow you to access these sites or games .
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June 18, 2015, 10:24:17 PM
 #45


Bitcoin may appeal a lot to anarchists and libertarians but it does nothing, nor will it ever, for reducing socially dominant human beings. Its a jungle.
Bitcoin allows you to gamble and access these sites if they are illegal in your country. For example US players can't play much poker online but can do so with bitcoin. Thats the biggest reason people use it as you are not restricted to laws based in your country that may not allow you to access these sites or games .
You make a good point. Even in spite of laws people can choose to gamble with bitcoin regardless. But don't offshore US sportsbooks operate for US customers in the likes of CostaRica? Isn't that similar?

I would love to set up my own little online gambling site. If it was cheap and easy to set up a dice site and set the maximum bet to 0.0001 bitcoin I think I would love to see how that operates. Obviously it might not be too popular due to the low bet  but it would be nice if me, Joe bloggs, could do such a thing, increasing the bet limits as confidence grew. However, the likes of me isn't going to do that because my UK government would disapprove and possibly ruin my life if I did.

I wish they loved me more.

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June 19, 2015, 11:10:02 AM
 #46

The UK Gambling Commission has written to online sportsbooks, bookmakers and casinos telling them to block anyone with a UK IP address.
Already, Direct Bet and the Fairlay Bitcoin betting exchange have implemented this today.
It's outrageous.

Are Direct Bet and the Fairlay Bitcoin UK based?

If not, why are they blocking UK IPs?

I don't understand why everyone seems to be taking orders from the UK Gambling Commission all of a sudden without any explanation to end users.

Any more details on this would be appreciated.

Regardless of where the bookies are based, its customers are British. That's why they're only blocking UK IPs, and bitcoin sites are only following the other foreign bookmakers (188bet, sbobet, pinnacle) in leaving Britain since the new gambling laws require them to register under the UKGamingCommission's licensing system (and pay a hefty tax). The idea behind this is to protect British consumers apparently, though anyone who knows the first thing about betting knows you cannot win using British bookmakers alone. And I'd wager (no pun intnded) that there are fifa levels of corruption going on behind the scenes

My point is, why are any sites blocking British IPs just because the UK gambling commission said so? Especially if they are outside of the UK, what can a UK gambling commission really do about it? How do you even prove that;

1) A cryptocurrency is equivalent to money's worth
2) An IP is equivalent to a location
3) An anonymous transaction is linked to a person in the UK and a gambling related server
4) A gambling commission in the UK has control over a server outside of the UK

None of these things have been held up in court and, especially if you are outside of the UK, how do you even get summoned to a UK court of law?

Basically, if sites start blocking IPs any time any random commission decides so then there is no point to using cryptocurrency. If anyone, from any side, honestly thinks that banning UK IPs resolves a problem here then they are seriously short-sighted. It will just censor the mainstream from cryptocurrency, and other commissions from other countries will soon start telling other sites to do the same with other services.

Ultimately the only ones who will continue to use cryptocurrency will be using VPNs without the site's consent and causing more problems down the line. Frankly the fact that no one is seriously challenging this is disastrous to the survival of cryptocurrency. It has set the trend for the future. Cryptocurrency sites are happy to provide censorship of their services at the first sign of fear without even really questioning it.

There is no longer any point in using them.

You're absolutely right. The thing is, although there will be very little repercussion for directbetif they continued serving Brit IPs, I think they see it as not worth the hassle. The UKGC perhaps has them a little bit scared and they're protecting their business. Their lack of comment on the issue just confirms this. It's a slippery slope once bitcoin, a decentralized currency, starts to be ruled over like this

It may appear to be less hassle short term but trust me they are losing their business long term if they are this unprincipled.
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June 19, 2015, 01:55:19 PM
 #47

Taken from

http://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/FAQs/Online-gambling/Why-has-the-Gambling-Commission-written-to-Bitcoin-operators.aspx

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Why has the Gambling Commission written to Bitcoin operators?

 
We are concerned about illegal gambling operators providing facilities for gambling to consumers in Great Britain. An operator needs to be licensed by the Gambling Commission regardless of where they are located in the world, if they provide facilities for gambling to consumers in Great Britain. We have written to a number of website operators offering prizes of money or money’s worth to gamblers in Britain that are not licensed by us. Bitcoin comes under the category of money’s worth and therefore any operator offering this facility to gamblers in Britain requires an operating licence or they are acting illegally.
Page last reviewed: June 2015
fox19891989
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June 19, 2015, 02:00:36 PM
 #48


Bitcoin may appeal a lot to anarchists and libertarians but it does nothing, nor will it ever, for reducing socially dominant human beings. Its a jungle.
Bitcoin allows you to gamble and access these sites if they are illegal in your country. For example US players can't play much poker online but can do so with bitcoin. Thats the biggest reason people use it as you are not restricted to laws based in your country that may not allow you to access these sites or games .

Yes, but some casinos and dice site like primedice bans US players, but there is nothing can prevent a gambler, he/she can use the VPN or proxy to bet, it is easy to solve this kind of question.

For me, bitcoin gambling is good cos fast deposit and withdrawal, and very low withdrawal fees compared to fiat withdrawal
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June 19, 2015, 03:12:27 PM
 #49

It may appear to be less hassle short term but trust me they are losing their business long term if they are this unprincipled.


They are not losing all of it I would say. Basically if a gambler is fond enough with a site, it will not be much hassle for him to access it through a proxy. However as a unlicensed gambling site, the risk are far greater than keep on serving business for the UK customer .
It will be much of a nightmare for you because you might see the legal feds knocking on your front the next morning and this would be the reason that most unlicensed sites has taken the safety precautions rather than facing the law in the future



It seems FortuneJack has follow the other fellow gambling sites as well

We have added Great Britain into our list of blocked regions because online gambling is illegal there. In the past we had blocked several US states for the same reason. Although, we are working with gambling commission to resolve the issue as soon as possible and meet the country regulations.

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June 19, 2015, 04:28:03 PM
 #50

I have had to pull my site www.bitcoinpunter.com today after the UK Gambling Commission contacted me to inform me I was breaking the law by advertising unlicenced betting sites and leaving myself open to prosecution.

Advertising unlawful gambling is a  criminal offence under section 330  of the Gambling Act 2005 (the Act).    
The Commission regulates gambling in Great Britain and has the power to prosecute offences under the Act.


 Undecided
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June 19, 2015, 04:45:20 PM
 #51

I have had to pull my site www.bitcoinpunter.com today after the UK Gambling Commission contacted me to inform me I was breaking the law by advertising unlicenced betting sites and leaving myself open to prosecution.

Advertising unlawful gambling is a  criminal offence under section 330  of the Gambling Act 2005 (the Act).    
The Commission regulates gambling in Great Britain and has the power to prosecute offences under the Act.


 Undecided

This seems pretty akward for me, are you from UK ? if you are from UK then this seems to be a huge steps taken by the UK gambling commision to stop the unlicensed bookies. Never crossed my mind that they would go this far by even taking down website that promotes unlicensed bookie.
If you are not from UK, I dont have any idea on how they will drag you to court for advertising an unlicensed bookies considering that we are all strangers in the internet. It will be just a waste of time dealing with each individual for this case

P.S : did they contact you via email?

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June 19, 2015, 05:04:08 PM
 #52

I am in the UK.
Yes, they contacted me via email with a Cease and Desist  letter attached in PDF format.
They certainly mean business.
I think a war on bitcoin gambling has begun.
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June 19, 2015, 05:11:48 PM
 #53

I am in the UK.

I wondered if they are taking down all websites that promote an unlicensed bookies or that only restricted to the UK. if the UK gambling commision is pulling this huge step, we might see the US gambling commision to pull some similar stunt as well soon, then again the whole word of illegal gambling will be pretty much limited with all this restriction

I think a war on bitcoin gambling has begun.

It isnt a war on BTC gambling but rather a war to the unlicensed gambling website, Im sure they did the same thing to FIAT gambling site as well. This would put on more pressure to the unlicensed gambling website to get a license which would give the commision an extra income.
Well even playing at a licensed gambling website isnt a guarantee either that we wont be cheated or having the operator to run with our funds

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June 19, 2015, 05:51:13 PM
 #54

The government are taking bitcoin seriously. The next phase is to get licensed bitcoin gambling sites. Integration in to already licensed fiat sites comes after.

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June 19, 2015, 06:41:25 PM
 #55

I am in the UK.
Yes, they contacted me via email with a Cease and Desist  letter attached in PDF format.
They certainly mean business.
I think a war on bitcoin gambling has begun.
I would like to see what happens incase one of the gambling sites(not in UK) does not agree to their request. I really doubt they will do anything, but would still be nice to see. If their threats work and are serious, I see US implementing a similar law soon.
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June 19, 2015, 10:51:12 PM
 #56

I am in the UK.
Yes, they contacted me via email with a Cease and Desist  letter attached in PDF format.
They certainly mean business.
I think a war on bitcoin gambling has begun.
I would like to see what happens incase one of the gambling sites(not in UK) does not agree to their request. I really doubt they will do anything, but would still be nice to see. If their threats work and are serious, I see US implementing a similar law soon.
I get a different impression. It seems to me they are out in force and such a 'criminal' would be attacked at the jugular.

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June 22, 2015, 03:44:24 AM
 #57

Taken from

http://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/FAQs/Online-gambling/Why-has-the-Gambling-Commission-written-to-Bitcoin-operators.aspx

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Why has the Gambling Commission written to Bitcoin operators?

 
We are concerned about illegal gambling operators providing facilities for gambling to consumers in Great Britain. An operator needs to be licensed by the Gambling Commission regardless of where they are located in the world, if they provide facilities for gambling to consumers in Great Britain. We have written to a number of website operators offering prizes of money or money’s worth to gamblers in Britain that are not licensed by us. Bitcoin comes under the category of money’s worth and therefore any operator offering this facility to gamblers in Britain requires an operating licence or they are acting illegally.
Page last reviewed: June 2015


They mention nothing about Litecoin, Dogecoin, etc. and areas in the UK outside of Great Britain... the whole thing has no proper clarification about what exactly is legal and what is not.

It may appear to be less hassle short term but trust me they are losing their business long term if they are this unprincipled.


They are not losing all of it I would say. Basically if a gambler is fond enough with a site, it will not be much hassle for him to access it through a proxy. However as a unlicensed gambling site, the risk are far greater than keep on serving business for the UK customer .
It will be much of a nightmare for you because you might see the legal feds knocking on your front the next morning and this would be the reason that most unlicensed sites has taken the safety precautions rather than facing the law in the future

Why would a gambler continue to bet with a site that still hasn't offered a full explanation of the situation?

If they are willing to ban one country's IP with no explanation, they will continue to do the same with other countries sooner or later.

Their business is finished.

I would like to see what happens incase one of the gambling sites(not in UK) does not agree to their request.

Exactly.
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June 22, 2015, 07:32:29 AM
 #58

They are not losing all of it I would say. Basically if a gambler is fond enough with a site, it will not be much hassle for him to access it through a proxy. However as a unlicensed gambling site, the risk are far greater than keep on serving business for the UK customer .
It will be much of a nightmare for you because you might see the legal feds knocking on your front the next morning and this would be the reason that most unlicensed sites has taken the safety precautions rather than facing the law in the future

Why would a gambler continue to bet with a site that still hasn't offered a full explanation of the situation?

If they are willing to ban one country's IP with no explanation, they will continue to do the same with other countries sooner or later.

Their business is finished.

Actually there is already an explanation for all of this , it will be because they are unlicensed and there is a risk that they might be taken down. So if you ask them, they will explain to you that online gambling is illegal there and so on rather than telling you the truth about that they are unlicensed and not banning the UK IP will harm their business

Not every country has a great influence towards online gambling, which in this case UK has some influence I would say that most sites has obey their request. If only the request coming from some country in the middle of Africa, I doubt that they will follow the request

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June 22, 2015, 09:58:57 AM
 #59

The UK Gambling Commission has written to online sportsbooks, bookmakers and casinos telling them to block anyone with a UK IP address.
Already, Direct Bet and the Fairlay Bitcoin betting exchange have implemented this today.
It's outrageous.

I can get on Directbet and all other sites just fine.

The UK Gambling Commission has written to online sportsbooks, bookmakers and casinos telling them to block anyone with a UK IP address.
Already, Direct Bet and the Fairlay Bitcoin betting exchange have implemented this today.
It's outrageous.

Are Direct Bet and the Fairlay Bitcoin UK based?

If not, why are they blocking UK IPs?

I don't understand why everyone seems to be taking orders from the UK Gambling Commission all of a sudden without any explanation to end users.

Any more details on this would be appreciated.

If they're providing a service to the UK then I think they still have to comply with their laws, otherwise anyone could just set up a casion based on some island somewhere but continue to operate their site in the UK market.
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June 22, 2015, 10:05:25 AM
 #60

im not sure about UK laws on gambling but im sure only the laws of the country your operating from apply so they are regulated by the one main country and international relations does the rest ??

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