Canada opens First Online Casino
While America has spent the past two years talking about opening an online casino, Canada went ahead and took the initiative to open the first ever North American internet casino. The British Columbia Lottery Corporation ushered in the new era when they created an online casino that will be run and operated by the federal government.
The website in question is called PlayNow.com and it hosts a full range of online casino games. If the name PlayNow sounds familiar, it’s probably because the website has been used for the British Columbia Lottery Corporation’s lottery operations for the past 6 years. Now the site will be used as an online casino where people who are 19 years and older can place bets on lots of different games.
The Canadian government decided to get involved in online gambling because of the fact that British Colombians spend over $100 million gambling at offshore websites. The B.L.C.L. is hoping to funnel that money back to the government through their PlayNow casino. Of course, the government doesn’t expect to get all of the $100 million going towards their site, but their site is expected to haul in an estimated $40 million per year.
The B.L.C.L. wants to make sure that safeguards are in place to prevent people’s gambling habits from going overboard. They have imposed a $9,999 weekly limit on every bettor’s account, and they’re not taking wagers from anybody on the “self-exclusion” list. This list is a voluntary program that gamblers can place themselves on to revoke their betting privileges in B.L.C.L.-run casinos.
The Canadian online casino is seen as an experiment by other countries including the United States; if this experiment works, other countries are expected to follow suit in regulated internet gambling. Unfortunately for the B.L.C.L., the casino’s first day was so successful that too many people accessed the site causing it to crash. PlayNow.com is currently being re-worked as we speak.