The Fantasy Sports Gamble (full film) : FRONTLINE

The Fantasy Sports Gamble (full film) : FRONTLINE


>>NARRATOR:Tonight onFrontline:the law…>>Sports betting, by and large, is illegal in this country.>>NARRATOR:The loophole…>>The United States Congress carved out a piece of legislation that says fantasy sports is not gambling. I didn’t make that decision; they did.>>NARRATOR:The undergroundworld of online sports bettingand the multibillion dollarbusiness of daily fantasysports.>>I’ve made hundreds of thousands of dollars doing this over the past two years now.>>The core of what we do is about making sports more exciting.>>NARRATOR: FrontlineandNew York TimesreporterWalt Bogdanich investigate themeteoric rise and newchallenges facing daily fantasysports.>>It’s clear to us that what they’re doing is gambling. There are investigations going on all over the country. You can’t have unregulated gambling without running into problems.>>BOGDANICH: How much do you estimate you lost?>>Between $60,000 and $65,000.>>NARRATOR:Tonight onFrontline,“The Fantasy SportsGamble.”>>BOGDANICH: So you don’t view what you do here as gambling.>>No. (baseball commentary playing)>>I found out about FanDuel when I was in high school. I had played fantasy football for years and whatnot. I never played daily fantasy. Now I play probably 450, 500 different games a day. A typical morning, it’s pretty much just me hanging out, poring over baseball stats. I’ll spend between four and five hours a day on it. So after that, I’m just hanging out doing whatever, just living life as a normal college student as best I can.>>NARRATOR: We met Bryce Mauro on the last day of his junior year at Indiana’s DePauw University. He’s one of the nation’s best players on FanDuel, a popular daily fantasy sports site. There are many ways to play, but basically, you create your own fantasy team made of real professional players, and earn points based on how they do in real-life games that day. Fantasy sports has been around for decades, but not like this.>>I wagered about $12,000 this morning.>>WALT BOGDANICH: That’s a lot of money.>>Yeah, it is.>>BOGDANICH: You confident?>>I’m very confident. I wouldn’t be wagering money on this scale if I wasn’t very confident in my abilities. I mean, I lost about $18,000 last night, so it offsets it. It fluctuates. I’ve made hundreds of thousands of dollars doing this over the past almost two years now. You can see all the games and whatnot. I’ve played 249 games.>>NARRATOR: On this day, Bryce won $11,000 on the afternoon baseball games.>>The guy has bases loaded, I got the guy that plays as a leadoff hitter…>>NARRATOR: That night, he lost $6,000. Over the past year, with reporters fromThe New York Times,we’ve been investigating what was behind the explosion in daily fantasy sports and the wider world of online sports betting, which is illegal in most of the country. Daily fantasy sports doesn’t consider itself gambling, and had been booming.>>Fantasy sports was traditionally a season-long contest that was something common among coworkers, friends, and family.>>NARRATOR: For years, players would gather at the beginning of the season, assemble their teams and compete against each other.>>In the season-long contests, sometime you have to wait three months, four months. You’re devoting hours upon hours a week, and you have to wait until the end of the season to find out who won.>>NARRATOR: Then the Internet came along. Today, you can play thousands of opponents at once. And rather than months, you get results right away.>>The gratification doesn’t get any more instant than in daily fantasy sports. You have an outcome every single day. And if you don’t like your lineup today and you lost, you get to start over again tomorrow.>>BOGDANICH: Fantasy sports used to be seasonal. Now it’s being offered on a daily basis. Who came up with that idea?>>I never want to claim credit for anything that, you know, I’m sure many people will claim credit for. Clearly, we were one of the first out there. Fantasy was a market that was stagnant.>>BOGDANICH: And FanDuel played a big role in changing that.>>Exactly.>>BOGDANICH: And how did that happen?>>Despite fantasy being a large market, the younger sports fans weren’t engaging with fantasy. And so the insight was, what if we take these mechanics around research and picking players and competing with your friends and put it in a format that’s geared towards a very hard- to-reach but very important demographic of kind of millennial 18- to 35-year-olds. Let’s make it mobile first, let’s make it faster, and see how that goes.>>NARRATOR: With that, a new industry was born. ♪ ♪ Soon, dozens of companies began offering daily fantasy games, most making their money by taking a cut of the players’ bets. FanDuel and its main rival, DraftKings, are the biggest names in the business, with about 90% of the market. Both are now valued at over a billion dollars.>>We have several million paid players, and that’s growing every day. So right now, we’re signing up, you know, 20,000 to 30,000 players every day.>>BOGDANICH: 20,000 to 30,000 every day?>>Yep.>>BOGDANICH: What percentage of your daily fantasy players would you say are under the age of 30?>>Probably about 50% to 60% are under the age of 30.>>NARRATOR: It’s a demographic that appealed to venture capitalists and private equity firms. They’ve pumped hundreds of millions of dollars into the industry. TV networks wanted that audience as well.>>Full disclosure, 21st Century Fox, our parent company, owns roughly an 11% stake in DraftKings.>>We should note NBC Sports Group and NBC’s parent company Comcast are among the investors in FanDuel.>>ESPN has an exclusive two-year marketing agreement with DraftKings worth a reported $250 million.>>NARRATOR: Maybe the most surprising support came from professional sports leagues and teams. They’ve long opposed sports gam, which is illegal in most of they saying it fosters corruption.>>The sports leagues have always been of the view that sports gambling will lead to match fixing. And even if it doesn’t lead to match fixing, it will create a negative perception in the minds of fans that the games are not on the level.>>NARRATOR: But that didn’t discourage them from embracing daily fantasy sports. The NBA developed a partnership with FanDuel. Major League Baseball and the NHL struck deals with DraftKings. New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones both own stakes in DraftKings, and 28 professional football teams have made deals with one site or the other.>>The sports teams and the leagues want to make sure that sports is as relevant for today’s millennial generation as it was for the generation that is now in their 40s or 50s. And what they see in FanDuel is an opportunity to engage a younger generation of fans, get people to watch more sports, and then also get them to play more on FanDuel.>>FanDuel’s one-week fantasy football leagues are paying $75 million a week…>>NARRATOR: All that investment money fueled an advertising blitz worth hundreds of millions of dollars in the run-up to this year’s football season.>>Turning a game you love into a lifetime of cash.>>Use promo code “Kick” to play and get free entry into the millionaire grand final.>>NARRATOR: On some weeks, FanDuel or DraftKings was the number one advertiser on television.>>This isn’t fantasy as usual. This is DraftKings.>>They were everywhere. I’m not sure that we’ve ever seen that level of spend for any kind of gaming product, or frankly, any product. It’s very rare that a marketing campaign achieves a spot in the cultural consciousness, that it becomes a meme, that it becomes the subject of jokes for late night television hosts.>>These days, it feels like you can’t turn on the TV without seeing one of three things: a zombie, a Kardashian, or a fantasy football ad.>>I can’t think of another marketing campaign at least in my lifetime that achieved that kind of cultural status through sheer force of repetition.>>Over and over and over again.>>It’s not making you want to play?>>No.>>NARRATOR: All that advertising also brought some unwanted attention.>>As the daily fantasy sports industry became more ubiquitous, the questions were inevitable. Is this something that is legal? Is this something that should be regulated? How is this not gambling?>>Let’s be clear, we’re talking about millions of people spending billions of dollars to bet on things they can’t control.>>The big question is, is it even legal, and should it be?>>This comes dangerously close to online gambling.>>Do they have to pay anything to play, and do they win something?>>They do.>>That’s gambling.>>What that advertising spend at the beginning of the NFL season really did was create not only a lack of sympathy, but a vulnerability that didn’t exist a year ago.>>(bleep) you, it’s gambling!>>BOGDANICH: Is what you do gambling?>>No, it’s not gambling at all. I mean, it’s… I consider it more of investing. You know, I have a portfolio. I’m trying to diversify the portfolio by picking players every day. I’m trying to maximize returns. I’m trying to optimize my lineup each day. I mean, it’s like you’re given $1,000 to bet on the stock market in a day. It’s no different than that.>>BOGDANICH: You told me that FanDuel doesn’t like the word “gambling” associated with its brand, and you told the story of they contacted you and asked you not to use that word. Tell me what happened.>>I prefer not to answer that.>>BOGDANICH: Okay, okay. Because you don’t want to get them angry, or…?>>Because I don’t want to do anything to upset the industry. I mean, that’s my job at stake, pretty much.>>There’s a lot of commercials out there, it’s not just during the games, it’s everything. You see these daily fantasy commercials.>>The core of our game is not about the money. When you ask people why they play, they play because it makes the games more exciting. When you ask us what we as a company are about, we’re about making sports more exciting.>>BOGDANICH: So you don’t view what you do here at FanDuel as gambling.>>No.>>BOGDANICH: That’s a word that isn’t used very much around here, I take it.>>Nope, because we are… Every time that you talk to our users, what comes through loud and clear is the fact that we’re an entertainment product.>>BOGDANICH: So you see no reason, then, for fantasy sports to be regulated by some government agency?>>Our product is all about entertainment value.>>The word “gambling,” or the association with gambling, will have immediate negative repercussions for the industry. They want their product to be as deregulated, as non-interfered with as possible by state and federal government, and the moment the gambling door opens, all that ends.>>NARRATOR: The fight over the legality of fantasy sports traces back a decade ago to Washington, D.C. Ironically, the daily fantasy sports industry owes its existence to an anti-gambling law: The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006. It was supposed to stop credit card companies and other payment processors from facilitating bets online.>>Mr. Speaker, I yield three minutes to the gentleman from Iowa, Mr. Leach.>>NARRATOR: The bill’s sponsor, Iowa Republican Jim Leach, saw online gambling as a threat to young people and gambling addicts.>>Never has it been so easy to lose so much so quickly at such a young age. Internet gambling serves no social purpose. Internet gambling is crack cocaine for gamblers. You can gamble in the bedroom, in the living room, on a treadmill. You can get over your head quite quickly. I yield back the balance of my time.>>The gentleman yields back the balance of his time.>>I was one of the leading lobbyists for the opponents of the legislation.>>BOGDANICH: You were against it– why?>>Well, the companies I represented felt that the appropriate path for the U.S. was to license and regulate Internet gaming, not to prohibit it, and preserve the freedom of adults to entertain themselves as they choose.>>BOGDANICH: How important was the National Football League in securing passage of this bill?>>Instrumental. I think it’s universally recognized that their advocates were the main strategists for getting it done.>>NARRATOR: The bill they helped pass targeted online gambling, including websites that had moved offshore. But it exempted fantasy sports as long as they involved more skill than chance. And ultimately, it left the fight over the legality of fantasy sports up to individual states.>>This is a 15-minute vote.>>BOGDANICH: If the point of the 2006 law was to stop Internet gaming involving offshore websites, what role did fantasy sports play in this?>>There was a big grassroots uprising. Fantasy sports players don’t consider themselves gamblers, and I think the sponsors decided it would be easier to enact the law if they did not prohibit fantasy sports. (gavel pounds)>>The yeas are 409, the nays are two.>>The daily idea of fantasy sports was not conceived of when the bill was passed, partly under the assumption fantasy sports are kind of a fun activity that were a very modest proportion in size. But I certainly didn’t foresee this sort of activity.>>NARRATOR: The 2006 law had paved the way for daily fantasy sports to flourish. As for the law’s primary target, the multibillion-dollar online sports gambling industry, our reporting showed it flourished too, but underground. It’s a shadowy world that, for many years, Curtis Coburn called home.>>BOGDANICH: Were you a successful bettor?>>They probably beat me on football. Baseball, I did pretty good on baseball.>>NARRATOR: By the time the law passed, he had been playing with a gambling ring in Plano, Texas, for about five years.>>They had a large amount of bettors all over the United States. They had bookies in Vegas, New York, you name it.>>And it looks like Gregg is gonna bump it up, makes it $600 to go.>>NARRATOR: Coburn’s bookie, the guy who handled all his money, was Gregg Merkow, a big-time poker player with over a million and a half dollars in winnings.>>After a while, after talking to him, he asked me if I was a cop, and I told him no, and he said, “Well, I’ll hook you up,” and I was betting that night.>>NARRATOR: But in fact, Coburn was a cop, an undercover detective for the Plano PD.>>Where are you at now?>>Our target just showed up.>>NARRATOR: He was wired with a hidden camera that recorded hours of betting transactions.>>How you doing?>>Good, how are you?>>I had a fake name. I went by Carl Cannon. I had a checking account, credit cards, different address. I had a completely different cover.>>Thank you, sir. I may just give it back to you next week just like it is right here.>>It was a lot of chasing the money, following the money.>>NARRATOR: Although the money was handled in person, much of the actual betting took place online. On an array of two dozen websites based not in Texas, but offshore, on the tiny Caribbean island of Curacao, which the bookies used to process bets around the clock.>>They were taking in about a billion dollars’ worth of wagers a year.>>BOGDANICH: A billion dollars a year.>>Federal agents and the Plano Police Department have shut down what they say was a five- billion-dollar illegal sport gambling ring.>>NARRATOR: When they finally broke up the ring, they confiscated over $10 million. Though the Plano ring had been stopped, reporters at theTimeswere seeing gambling rings proliferating. We began digging deeper into how these online gambling operations work. James Glanz is an investigative reporter with a PhD in physics. Augie Armendariz works in the computer-assisted reporting unit. Though many gambling websites refuse to take bets from American customers, we managed to set up an account with a Panamanian website called BetOnline. Its motto is “Because you can,” and that turns out to be absolutely true.>>That’s my credit card information right there. You can see my available balance up here, it’s $139. Got a pending wager, ten bucks on Chelsea.>>All right, let’s bet on the All-Star game. I’m an American League guy. Let’s put ten bucks on the American League.>>Sure. Do a straight bet.>>Okay.>>Then I can place my bet, confirm it. And watch out for the Tweet button.>>So we just sat in the middle of Manhattan and made an online bet with a company in Panama.>>Panama. After I set up the account, I couldn’t quite figure out how to deposit money when I got a phone call on my cellphone, and a guy walked me right through how to put money on the book using my credit card.>>You didn’t ask for help.>>No, just got the call.>>You just got a call.>>Yeah, and he just assured me that there wouldn’t be anything on my credit card statement that said “BetOnline.” And sure enough, this is the company that eventually showed up on my credit card statement.>>A company that sells safety goggles and gloves and hard hats?>>That’s the one.>>NARRATOR: So we tried to order some work boots.>>BOGDANICH: Is this Moser Safety?>>NARRATOR: But the woman who answered there said it was actually “a third-party payment support service for gaming and betting sites.”>>BOGDANICH: Is your company helping an online gambling ring evade U.S. law?>>NARRATOR: She said she wasn’t sure.>>BOGDANICH: Because it would appear that that’s the case. So, if I wanted to buy workwear and clothing and safety boot and shoes, I’m not gonna get that, am I?>>NARRATOR: The answer was no.>>BOGDANICH: Okay, well, thank you very much.>>NARRATOR: When we checked recently, mosersafety.com was no longer online. Fraudulent billing is just one way sports betting rings try to get around the law.>>Many arrested this morning in a nation-wide bust.>>…happened in homes in California, New York, Nevada…>>The alleged gambling ring…>>NARRATOR: Probably no office has worked harder to stop them than the district attorney in Queens, New York. Using the state’s anti-gambling laws, prosecutors indicted 17 people from an international sports gambling ring just a few months ago.>>You’re serving 250-20 notice, demand notice for alibi, 240-30 notice.>>There’s value in going after criminal enterprises which, you know, really prey on people.>>That would be $50,000 cash or bond.>>Organized crime has found gambling enterprises to be extremely profitable. One of the most lucrative rackets, if you will, is syndicated sports betting, second only to narcotics trafficking as a source of revenue for the mob.>>BOGDANICH: And all of this is made possible because of the Internet.>>Because of the Internet, absolutely.>>NARRATOR: But collecting bets and paying winners still has to be done the old-fashioned way.>>They can’t use electronic wire transfers, they can’t use credit cards because that’s prohibited by federal law, so they have to have boots on the ground, so to speak. They have to settle up in person.>>NARRATOR: It’s a system that operates right out in the open, as Brave’s investigators saw a few years ago, in the middle of the day on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan.>>Fella walks up, meets some person, “Here’s your money.” Our detectives were in a position to observe it and take pictures of it. And this is the way business is done in these kind of criminal enterprises.>>NARRATOR: The courier, whose codename was “Mr. Gold,” handed over a bag stuffed with $350,000. But the recipient of the money was a surprise: Joy Tomchin, a New York real estate developer and philanthropist. She told investigators that she was merely holding the money for her brother Stanley, the top oddsmaker for Pinnacle Sports, one of the biggest and best known offshore gambling websites. Pinnacle has been based on the island of Curacao since the 1990s. At its peak, it was handling as much as $12 billion a year and was a household name– in certain households, anyway.>>What price they give you on Alvarez?>>$350.>>Who you place your action with?>>Pinnacle.>>Online?>>NARRATOR: After the 2006 law, Pinnacle said it stopped taking bets from the United States. Within two years, its business dropped in half.>>BOGDANICH: Did they come back?>>Well, our investigation revealed that they did, and they were very extensively involved in accepting wagers that originated from the United States.>>NARRATOR: In that particular case, authorities recovered about $10 million and arrested 25 people in five states, including Stanley Tomchin, who pled guilty to a misdemeanor. We wanted to speak to Pinnacle Sports directly, so we went to Curacao, about 40 miles off the coast of Venezuela.>>I think that one of the attractions of these zones here is that they have great tax rates.>>BOGDANICH: And also the tolerant government.>>NARRATOR: The billion-dollar company’s offices were here, in a beachside budget hotel. We’d requested an interview and were waiting to hear back when there was commotion at the hotel.>>BOGDANICH: I was sitting in the lobby this morning and I noticed a whole horde of workers descending with a lot of equipment coming out of the Pinnacle office, and now they’re pulling out in the truck. I guess one of the questions that occurs is, did our arrival have anything to do with their departure? Coincidence? Who knows.>>NARRATOR: We followed them across town, where they were moving into a new office, a building that also houses Curacao’s economic development ministry.>>BOGDANICH: Hey, he’s talking our picture. How you doing? Good. What’s your name?>>Amali.>>BOGDANICH: Hi, and you’re with Pinnacle?>>Yes.>>BOGDANICH: What’s going on here?>>We’re moving.>>BOGDANICH: You’re moving?>>Yes.>>BOGDANICH: You didn’t like the Holiday Beach Hotel?>>No, they didn’t treat us well.>>BOGDANICH: They didn’t treat you right? The question is, am I gonna ever have an opportunity to talk to somebody on camera?>>NARRATOR: So we went back to the Holiday Beach Hotel to make one last attempt at talking to someone at Pinnacle.>>BOGDANICH: Can we do an interview with anyone from Pinnacle to ask about their operation and why you guys moved this morning?>>No. Excuse me, don’t take my picture. You guys are trespassing as far as I’m concerned.>>BOGDANICH: So we should leave?>>You should leave.>>NARRATOR: We asked to speak to other gambling companies, but they wouldn’t talk either. Nor would officials in Curacao who oversee the gambling industry: the governor’s office, which issues gaming licenses, and the justice ministry. We finally received a statement from Pinnacle’s new neighbor, the economic development ministry.>>BOGDANICH: “I graciously thank you for your interest in this industry, but considering the U.S. position towards online gaming, there is no benefit to further deepen this topic for the benefit of the U.S. TV viewer. I can only refer you to Mr. Campbell from the Gaming Control Board.”>>NARRATOR: So we called Mr. Campbell, who said that while the Gaming Control Board was expected to gain authority over online gambling in the future, for now, it only regulates casinos. He wouldn’t agree to an interview, but said he’d provide a statement if we came to his office. It took less than 15 minutes, but when we arrived, he wasn’t there anymore. Before we came down here, an industry consultant said that getting someone to talk about online gambling in Curacao would be like chasing a ghost. He was right.>>BOGDANICH: This is a legal, allegedly regulated industry in Curacao. Why doesn’t anyone want to talk to us about it?>>That’s a difficult question for me to answer. Curacao believes very much on self-regulation in order to protect their companies.>>BOGDANICH: Are they doing a good job of self-regulating?>>Some are, and some are not.>>BOGDANICH: American prosecutors say they are unable really to dismantle these rings because the offshore online betting sites are beyond their jurisdiction, and they can’t reach them. Is that really the case?>>Certainly, it is very difficult for them to catch them. Today, these systems are in the cloud, so nobody knows exactly where the actual servers physically are located. But certainly, there is an operation somewhere, and that is what you have to discover in order to try to stop it.>>NARRATOR: To try to find these sites, we turned to a company in Manchester, New Hampshire, called Dyn, which helps online businesses move their data around the Internet as fast as possible. They explained that most websites actually aren’t just based out of one location, like Curacao. Instead, they use a network of data centers and servers spread around the world, allowing them to communicate quickly with potential customers.>>We sort of had the implicit understanding that they were where they said they were, but you’re saying it actually is coming from servers sitting in different places geographically.>>If you’re a provider or content provider of any means, whether it’s gambling or otherwise, you want that to perform well. So you’ll tend to see these providers go to get closer to where their actual…>>Closer to the consumer?>>To the consumer.>>If you’re accessing a website, part of it may exist in a data center in New York, part of it may exist in somebody’s corporate data center, in an office in Columbus or St. Louis.>>If you know where to look, you can start…>>BOGDANICH: You know where to look?>>We know where to look, and we know how to look.>>NARRATOR: They can track websites’ different locations using Internet data and a technique called trace routing. We asked Dyn’s top analyst, Doug Madory, to try to find out if the Pinnacle Sports website was coming from anywhere other than Curacao, which is where it is registered.>>Well, the registration for a domain can be anything. It could be the moon, for all we care. That address doesn’t relate to how it is actually hosted or routed. This is a tool that we use for researching where has this site been seen, and then look up where has the site resolved to. Here, we typed in pinnaclesports.com. So if we zoom in, this is gonna tell us where is this website hosted.>>I see some dots in the United States.>>Yeah, they’re in the United States. It looks like New York; Chicago, Illinois; San Jose; and Los Angeles.>>And it was considered outside of the reach of law enforcement because it’s registered overseas.>>Right.>>But when someone in the United States types in that domain name…>>A user in New York City would be directed to the data center in New York City within a couple miles of where they reside.>>BOGDANICH: Regarding Pinnacle, we’ve tracked one of their servers to a data center in New York City. Is that of concern to you?>>Absolutely.>>BOGDANICH: Why?>>Well, for them to knowingly collect data in New York for the purpose of furthering a bookmaking enterprise, if that’s what they’re doing, that would be a significant exercise of brazenness on their part. That would be very interesting to us, and we would certainly be looking into that.>>NARRATOR: We wanted to speak to Pinnacle about what we discovered. In a statement, the company said it only uses data centers in the U.S. to help accelerate its Internet traffic, and is fully in compliance with U.S. laws. Their website says they don’t take bets from the U.S., but U.S. and European investigators have in the past disputed this. AndNew York Timesreporters were able to bet with the help of a Pinnacle agent. Shortly after the company’s statement, Doug Madory, the expert from Dyn, said Pinnacle’s content had stopped coming from those U.S. data centers and servers we had seen and moved to Europe. Pinnacle was just one of many sports betting sites offshore that caught our attention. We’d heard of a website called Beteagle.com that federal prosecutors had tied to the Genovese organized crime family. The site was registered in Costa Rica, and we wanted to know how it worked.>>When I went ahead and tried to figure out, if I want to go to Beteagle.com, what address on the Internet do I have to get to to find the machine that’s broadcasting the Bet Eagle content, this is what came back.>>BOGDANICH: 108.61.159.125.>>108.61.159.125. So we know what the address is, and so the next question is where the actual servers are at, or the machines that people connect to to get the content from.>>BOGDANICH: And the reason we wanted to know where the servers were was because…?>>Well, we want to know if these things are really offshore, if they’re offshore in name only or if they actually have infrastructure in the United States that supports the wire rooms.>>NARRATOR: The Costa Rican website traced back to an unexpected location.>>You can see it goes into New Jersey. We figured out that that’s a building number of a data center in New Jersey, in Piscataway, New Jersey.>>NARRATOR: That data center housed servers operated by a New Jersey company called Choopa, so we looked to see what other sites were on those servers.>>It’s not just Beteagle.com. There’s evidently 165 others at that machine.>>BOGDANICH: Okay.>>Race books, mobile wagering. These are all on that same address on the internet.>>BOGDANICH: Bet on tennis, bet on baseball, all in one spot.>>That’s correct.>>BOGDANICH: And these sites are not licensed by the state of New Jersey.>>None.>>BOGDANICH: So they’re operating illegally.>>Right.>>NARRATOR: The New Jersey Department of Gaming Enforcement declined to be interviewed, but said they were not aware of the gambling sites we had found. And a Choopa spokesman denied any knowledge of the gambling sites. But a few days later, we noticed something in the Internet traffic.>>After you made the call, we started seeing the sites move one by one to different places. We’re seeing things migrate to new servers, different networks, different servers.>>BOGDANICH: They moved off of the Choopa network.>>They moved off the Choopa network, and we verified that.>>BOGDANICH: We found more than a hundred gambling sites that apparently federal agents didn’t know about.>>NARRATOR: Choopa, Pinnacle, and other companies declined to be interviewed. But an American investor in the online gambling business was willing. Jeffrey Salvati owns a stake in two offshore gambling sites: UBet and VitalBet. One of his investors is the world champion boxer Manny Pacquiao.>>BOGDANICH: And where are they based offshore again?>>Actually, both are licensed out of the country of Curacao, which is completely legal, and both are actually run out of Bulgaria.>>BOGDANICH: A truly international operation.>>Absolutely.>>BOGDANICH: Why did you go to Curacao to get licensed?>>Just because it’s most liberal. It’s not most cost-effective, but it’s highly… it is recognized.>>NARRATOR: He said he is not worried about legalities because his sites don’t take bets from the U.S. But he and his partners are looking beyond the world of offshore gambling. They’re now trying to get into the business of daily fantasy sports. They’re investing in a company called Impact Fantasy Sports.>>Impact Fantasy Sports has the ability to do games that aren’t quite popular in the U.S. yet. Cricket, rugby, darts…>>BOGDANICH: You’d like to take fantasy sports and take it on a trial run in other countries, is that right?>>Yes. While football is probably 50% of DraftKings and FanDuel’s activity, in the country of India, if you’re not in cricket, you can just pack up and go home. Impact Fantasy Sports allows us to execute those obscure sports.>>NARRATOR: Already in the U.S., fantasy sports has expanded beyond games like football and baseball. Now you can bet on daily fantasy golf, fantasy NASCAR, fantasy mixed martial arts, fantasy video games. And new companies have stretched the definition of fantasy sports. This one assembles your teams for you. You just pick a side. Daily fantasy has become ten-minute fantasy, reduced to a yes or no question, removing virtually all of the skill that’s supposed to separate fantasy sports from gambling.>>BOGDANICH: Do you think fantasy sports is gambling? Honest answer.>>No, I don’t believe it is. When you have to draft a roster of eight guys, all from varying teams, and you’re not placing a wager on a single guy or a single team, there is skill involved in fantasy.>>BOGDANICH: As there is in poker?>>As there is in poker.>>BOGDANICH: One is considered gambling but one is not.>>I don’t make those decisions. In 2006, the United States Congress carved out a piece of legislation that says fantasy sports is not gambling. I didn’t make that decision, they did. We’re playing by the rules, they make them.>>NARRATOR: But as the daily fantasy business grew, with an estimated $2.6 billion being bet last year, it did so with very few rules at all.The New York Timesbegan publishing stories on what we’d found out about the realities of unregulated sports betting, and how the daily fantasy industry avoided government oversight.>>BOGDANICH: Why should casinos and sportsbooks be subjected to oversight and regulation by the government, and fantasy sports somehow escapes all that?>>Fantasy sports has always been recognized to play a different role. When you talk to people about fantasy sports, it’s a social activity, it’s about competing with their friends. But we are clearly very focused on making sure that everybody in the industry operates with the highest degree of integrity.>>BOGDANICH: So we’re talking about self-regulation here.>>Mm-hmm.>>BOGDANICH: And you’re content that that’s working well.>>It is.>>This morning, two of the biggest names in fantasy sports are scrambling to clean up their image.>>NARRATOR: But a few days after that interview, scandal hit the industry.>>DraftKings and rival site FanDuel have acknowledged that their employees have played and won significant money on each other’s sites.>>An employee of DraftKings allegedly used inside information to win $350,000 on a rival site.>>NARRATOR: DraftKings hired an outside investigator, who cleared them of any wrongdoing, but the damage to the industry’s credibility had already been done.>>People suddenly realized hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people were playing for real money, billions of dollars were involved, but as it turned out, we don’t actually know what’s going on inside the black box that is daily fantasy sports.>>New developments in the explosive scandal rocking the unregulated world of fantasy sports.>>NARRATOR: The controversy prompted New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman to investigate.>>Up until now, FanDuel and DraftKings have not been subject to any regulation, so all we’re doing is taking them at their word that they’re doing the right thing. The standard in New York is not whether or not there’s some skill involved. In fact, our laws make it explicitly clear that if there’s a material element of chance, even if skill is involved, it’s still gambling.>>Massachusetts attorney general has…>>NARRATOR: Other states followed quickly with their own inquiries.>>In New Jersey, you have a senator and you also have a congressman who want investigations done.>>Arizona, Louisiana, Montana…>>The moment we began to think that there was something amiss, that something wasn’t quite on the level…>>We’re not gonna allow it if there’s any chance whatsoever.>>…it accelerated things to a degree where it seems as if half the states in the country are teeing up some form of regulation or legislation.>>It could be the beginning of the end.>>It has gone big, it has gone national.>>NARRATOR: And in mid-October…>>If you live in the state of Nevada, you can no longer play DraftKings or FanDuel.>>NARRATOR: …Nevada gaming officials ordered daily fantasy companies to shut down operations in the state.>>The state says they can’t operate there without a gambling license.>>Obviously, Nevada doesn’t prohibit all forms of gambling, but you have to submit yourself to a very rigorous regulatory process to run a gambling operation in Nevada.>>All bets are off, at least in New York State at this time, after the attorney general…>>NARRATOR: Soon after, New York cracked down, saying daily fantasy was illegal, their ads misleading, and the games unfair.>>BOGDANICH: A FanDuel executive told me that daily fantasy sports is really all about entertainment. Why, then, would the government, and you in particular, decide to get involved in a product that’s just about entertainment?>>Well, gambling is entertainment. People go to casinos to be entertained. The issue here is not whether or not it’s entertaining, it’s whether or not it is gambling, and you can’t have unregulated gambling without running into problems.>>NARRATOR: At the headquarters of the pro sports leagues in New York City, the New York attorney general’s actions caused concern. The leagues’ big investments and lucrative deals in fantasy sports were at stake. Major League Baseball may now end its deal with DraftKings, if they don’t comply with New Y. And NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has also raised questions about daily fantasy sports.>>We see a big distinction between season-long fantasy and daily fantasy. I want to make sure there’s proper consumer protections. That’s important for us, and I think that’s something that’s missing from the current structure.>>BOGDANICH: There’s the saying, “No harm, no foul.” Is that the case here? I mean, who’s being harmed?>>Well, the fact is we just don’t know what’s been going on in there, so our investigation is ongoing. It’s clear to us that what they’re doing is gambling, and there are people who have gambling addiction problems. And for them to contend it’s not gambling, you can almost lure people who know they have gambling addiction problems into getting back involved in betting. And gambling addiction experts have come forward to say this is a particularly pernicious form of gambling.>>NARRATOR: In pursuing the industry, attorney general Schneiderman has cited the work of Dr. Jeffrey Derevensky, one of the world’s leading experts on youth gambling problems.>>Nobody becomes a problem gambler after the first time you gamble. The problems come about when you can’t stop.>>NARRATOR: What concerns him is that the young, millennial-aged males who make up daily fantasy’s target demographic are most at risk for gambling addiction.>>We know that young people are greater risk takers. We know that males tend to gamble more than females in general. We also know that males tend to have more gambling related problems than females, and boys are much greater risk-takers than girls.>>NARRATOR: But FanDuel’s Matt King insisted it was not a problem.>>BOGDANICH: Are you aware of any young people who have developed gambling problems by playing fantasy sports?>>No.>>BOGDANICH: None?>>No.>>NARRATOR: To find out whether addiction was becoming an issue, we talked to counselors who work with problem gamblers across the country and wound up in Auburn, Alabama, to meet a gambling addict named Josh Adams.>>Gambling for some people is fun, and some people can do it normally. I’m not one of those people. If you have a mind like an addict has, it’s dangerous.>>NARRATOR: He’s been a gambling addict for much of his life. He says he’s lost hundreds of thousands of dollars betting on sports. He thought he’d recovered, but then discovered daily fantasy sports, playing for years on a number of different sites.>>It’d be akin to an alcoholic finding out about a whole new street of bars that he or she never knew about.>>BOGDANICH: How much time a day did you spend on picking players?>>80% of my day was spent either researching or analyzing. I would listen to Fantasy Sports Radio all day. I’d have one ear bud in my ear.>>BOGDANICH: How much money did you lose?>>Close to $20,000.>>NARRATOR:The New York Timesarticle on Josh’s account of his addiction struck a nerve with some readers.>>It had a profound impact on me, to the point where I almost cried as I was reading it because I could relate to Josh’s story, and kind of what I was going through at the time.>>NARRATOR: Paul is a gambling addict in his 20s. We agreed to conceal his identity and voice because he’sf ruining his career prospects. Like Josh, he says an addiction he thought was under control was reignited when he found daily fantasy sports.>>BOGDANICH: You knew you had a gambling problem. Why did you play that first game on fantasy sports?>>I didn’t think it was gambling. One of my friends was playing online fantasy, and he sent me a link, and the deal was he gets a free entry, and I get a free entry. That was my first time on the website.>>NARRATOR: Paul showed us his betting records.>>There’s one day where I deposited $5,300, lost, then deposited again a few hours later.>>BOGDANICH: And?>>$10,000 again. If that’s not an indication of problem gambling, I don’t know what is.>>BOGDANICH: How much do you estimate you lost?>>I think it’s a little bit over 60. It’s between $60,000 and $65,000.>>BOGDANICH: Did you have it to lose?>>No. It’s mostly credit card debt that I had to take on.>>BOGDANICH: Now that you’ve stopped playing daily fantasy sports, are there triggers that you worry about?>>Anytime I see one of those commercials for FanDuel or DraftKings, I think about it.>>After I played FanDuel the first time, I was hooked.>>I start pacing back and forth.>>It’s like the best adrenaline rush ever.>>NARRATOR: Josh Adams says he feels the same.>>The only urges I still have are when I see the daily fantasy sports advertising. They don’t say that there are going to be more losers than there are winners.>>$75 million a week with immediate cash payouts and no commitment.>>You heard me: real cash money!>>The Achilles’ heel for the industry is clearly problem gambling. Nothing will get the attention of state lawmakers, state legislators. That’s the dark side of gambling, the real-life adverse consequences that befall people who are unsuccessful at it or do it way too much.>>People have been hurt that could’ve been protected, and I think the industry has lost several years. You know, they’ve taken some blows that could’ve been avoided so easily.>>NARRATOR: Keith Whyte of the National Council on Problem Gambling says he’s been trying to convince the companies to develop serious consumer protections.>>BOGDANICH: How long have you been engaging the daily fantasy sports companies in conversations about what they should be doing that they’re not?>>Almost three years.>>BOGDANICH: Three years. Based on what you’re telling me today, it doesn’t sound like you’ve made a whole lot of progress.>>Unfortunately no, we haven’t.>>NARRATOR: Whyte says he’s recommended truth in advertising standards, effective age verification, and listing his gambling addiction helpline on their websites.>>BOGDANICH: Why hasn’t the fantasy sports industry adopted these consumer protection safeguards?>>I can’t speak for the fantasy sports industry. I only can say that when we’ve engaged with them, they have recognized that there are customers of theirs with problems, we have offered our help, and to date, they have not embraced it fully.>>NARRATOR: DraftKings recently added a link to the National Center for Responsible Gaming, which is not a gambling addiction hotline, but a research group funded partly by the casino industry. Both DraftKings and FanDuel nowy they are working with state law, though they have sued to prevent the New York attorney general from shutting them down. They insist fantasy sports is not addictive, and that they have adequate controls in place.>>BOGDANICH: Are daily fantasy games fair, as far as you know?>>That is something that we’re looking into in our investigation. It’s an ongoing investigation. There certainly have been allegations that they’re not fair. What the daily fantasy sports sites do to make this worse, is they run ads that are clearly geared to attracting the minnows, attracting the small players, suggesting that it’s easy to win, everybody can win.>>You don’t have to be an expert, you can just be an average guy and you’ve got a chance of doing well.>>On FanDuel, I’ve won over $62,000.>>In fact, it’s very difficult to win for an average player. 89% of the players lose money. If that’s true, or if it’s even worse, then that raises the question of who’s winning all the money.>>NARRATOR: The industry says that proves their point that fantasy sports is a game of skill.>>Just like football or basketball, the more you practice, the better that you get. Many of the forms of regulated gambling are actively constructed so they are games of chance, and that is a very, very different experience than a game of skill, which is what fantasy clearly is.>>NARRATOR: But in recent days a major payment processor said it won’t handle fantasy sports transactions, and Citigroup began blocking credit and debit card payments In New York to FanDuel and Draft Kings. Missisppi’s attorney general sa.>>Violates Texas gambling laws.>>Considered illegal gambling in Hawaii.>>NARRATOR: Even With the indus future now uncertain, millions e to chase the dream of winning bg at daily fantasy sports. >>You play for real money with immediate cash payouts!>>NARRATOR: Though few will be as successful as Bryce Mauro.>>The game lobby on FanDuel is kind of like an ecosystem, almost. You can get games against just people who just haven’t had the experience of playing on FanDuel before and don’t have as much experience playing on the site. So they’re more known as fish. You get more fish action at the beginning of the seasons as opposed to the end of the seasons. I mean, pretty much everyone who has come into this industry and I play against– the sharks, per se– are all poker players, former poker players, because poker, when online poker became illegal, a lot of people shifted to this industry. That’s kind of what caused, in part, the boom of it.>>BOGDANICH: With so much money at stake, is it fun?>>Honestly, it’s not as fun as it used to be, you know? Moving up in stakes, you know, I just have a lot invested every day, so it’s turned into more of a job than a hobby. I mean, I can take my economics degree and I can go into investment banking. I’m not entirely sure that’s what I want to do. I don’t want to work 70-hour weeks. Something like this is perfect for me. I don’t have to sit in a cubicle all day. I can just continuously try to grow this into something that I can do after college. I mean, I like sports for different reasons now. I like it because it makes me money.>>Frontlineis made possible by contributions to your PBS station from viewers like you. Thank you. And by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Major support forFrontlineis provided by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, committed to building a more just, verdant and peaceful world. More information is available at macfound.org. Additional support is provided by the Park Foundation, dedicated to heightening public awareness of critical issues. The John and Helen Glessner Family Trust, supporting trustworthy journalism that informs and inspires. The Ford Foundation, working with visionaries on the front lines of social change worldwide, at fordfoundation.org. The Wyncote Foundation. And by theFrontlineJournalism Fund, with major support from Jon and Jo Ann Hagler, and additional support from Laura DeBonis and Chris and Lisa Kaneb. Captioned by Media Access Group at WGBH access.wgbh.org>>For more on this and otherFrontlineprograms, visit our website at pbs.org/frontline.Frontline’s“The Fantasy Sports Gamble” is available on DVD. To order, visit shopPBS.org or call 1-800-PLAY-PBS.Frontlineis also available for download on iTunes.

100 Replies to “The Fantasy Sports Gamble (full film) : FRONTLINE”

  1. How the fuck can you be in college for economics and spend 5 hours a day watching sports? Little daddy trust fund pieced of shit.

  2. Anybody tried the Trabeplom System (look on google search engine)? We have noticed many awesome things about this popular method.

  3. Who in the hell is going to gamble on a fucking treadmill ? And who cares if they do ? Lucky online gambling is legal in Australia, in all forms. That Iowa Republican is a hard on for banning things. I thought America was all about personal freedom and liberty. I thought those are the hallmarks of the Republicans ?

  4. hey ,if anyone else is searching for best sports betting systems try Cypouris Safe Gaming Coach (should be on google have a look ) ? Ive heard some incredible things about it and my work buddy got cool results with it.

  5. its a best sport i entertainment
    its challenging your skills and knowledge and is fun.its fun to create your iwn group play with friends.Its awesome and can be fun.its not gambling.I LOVE FANDUEL.

  6. i am adict gambler but when i bet
    i use sportinteraction.or bet365. but FANDUEL its difrent.
    its not gambling.its like tournaments in group's.friends.
    i live fantasy sports
    i like fanduel

  7. if you think of it i dont understand why people make this sound bad its not like these people are selling drugs and if you technically think of it gambling is everywhere in the world the moment you put money into a business to make more money that is gambling, the moment you invest money into shares that is gambling,the moment you put money into a investment property that is gambling so technically speaking the definition of gambling should be anything you put your money into to make more money

  8. I know lots of people think it's gambling and it kind of is but I have another twist on it instead of standing by saying it's entertainment. It's more like a chess competition where you put in a fee to play and if you win you win money. It's a strategy game that does require research but it also has a little luck involved. It's more like competing in a strategic brain game where they are booby traps (like injuries) or sudden advantages (like when an opponent is hurt) or if your guy just happens to have a really good game. On a side note I think online gambling should be legal. If it's legal in a couple states it should be legal everywhere. I don't think companies should ever be blamed for people over doing it because there are millions more people who either don't do it at all or do it in moderation. If someone can't control themselves that is their own problem.

  9. tell people who lost money in the stock market, that stocks aint gambling. gambling addict is bullshit. is a guy driving his car everyday ;a driving addict? some people watch porn are they addicts? the government sells lottery tickets are the users addicts? if you watch tv everday aren't you an addict? an addict is someone who dont have self control.. if the government wants to stop the most harmful addictions. just tell them , if you cant see your abs .your to fat, your addicted to food.that addiction kills people. .as far as gambling,%75 of marriages end in devorce.. they gambled it would last forever

  10. Wow! This practice is wrong on so many levels. Organized gambling (or whatever you want to call it) seems to me a very foolish endeavor indeed. It's one thing to play poker on wednesday nights with your buddies, none of whom are any good and nobody is ever in danger of losing their rent money. But gambling addicts seem to ignore tha fact that the law of averages will make you the big loser in the long run. And who has more "long run" than an addict? This is proven by the very fact that organized gambling exists at all. There's big money to be made. That's bad enough, but when team owners begin investing in these companies, there seems to me a very clear conflict of interest. So I predict this will never, ever do anything good for professional sports. It only opens the door to corruption where it was fairly closed before. I GOTE NO!

  11. This seems like a waste of time on the American Government's part. They could use the funds poured into trying to stop or regulate this and feed the poor.

  12. They should take the man-power devoted to protecting Americans from the big bad sportsbooks, and use it against pedos and human traffickers… oh ya I guess that's not easy money though.

  13. An truly immature nation. Most countries manage legal gambling without any significant issues. It is not the role (or right) of govt to save people from themselves or decide how people spend their money. Legalise and regulate. Track all transactions digitally to spot patterns in match fixing and catch those who try to manipulate betting markets. Athletes cannot bet on their own sports & their betting accounts have to be lodged with federal oversight investigators so they are regularly checked. The gambling industry sets aside money for helping addicts. This is how it works in multiple nations & it works fine.

  14. why dont u guy do a documentary on how the lottery is gambling and how it should be illegal…ffs its taking all the money from the poor and gambling addicts.

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  16. nice documentary , Fantasy sports is a contest, needs to invest , its not scam . https://laser.online/?referrer=justine06

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  18. This is why all professional sports are fixed. We are the only country in the world that does not investigate sports fixing, tampering, and bribery in the industry.

  19. They try to say it's a crime to distort people's view. It's not a crime they just want people to invest in their financial markets, so they try to take away money going into gambling. Someone thinking the Dallas Cowboys are going to win the super bowl and whose willing to put their money where their mouth is is not a crime. Basically they're saying an opinion is a crime. cops suck. Someone spending time in jail for their sports perspective is ridiculous. anyone who agrees that sports betting is a crime is a forced-fed bland idiot with no sense of economics (study of decision-making). Gambling is perspective-centric & harmless, there's no difference in someone believing that Facebook's common stock will increase 3% and close at $158 than someone using mathematics & probability to predict that Matt Ryan will excel against a high blitz defense. It's their decision to use their capital in an advantageous situation with their scarce resource of money.

  20. So, I'm wondering what would happen if gambling became totally legal and unregulated in the U.S.? Does anyone believe that would lead to the total failure of U.S. civilization and government?

  21. Guys. earn money in the betting online does not need to be hard (I used to feel it did). I'm going to give you some tips now. Get a popular betting system called Trabeplom System (do a google search). Thanks to it I've start earning BIG cash in the betting online . I probably should not even be talking about it cause I do not want a lot of other guys out there running exactly the same game but whatever. I'm just simply in a excellent mood today so I'll share the wealth haha.

  22. I'm a lawyer, my webpage is hosted in India, my corporate emails are hosted in India, my coporate blog is hosted in the US. I'm not practicing law in India or the US, I'm a lawyer in Mexico, my law office is in Mexico, where I went to law school and where I my state and federal permit to practice law is. So even if I receive a request from Canada, the US or India, I'm still practicing law in Mexico. That's how it works online, if as long as you're based on a country, have your corporate offices in one country it doesn't matter where the hosting is done.

  23. 20:45 the government claims betting is a "racket". Well, everything is a crime ring to the government until they can tax it then suddenly the activity is legal. Governments remain the biggest crime ring of them all.

  24. I always thought that fantasy sports were for guys that had tiny penises and couldn't jerk off or get laid. Hmmm, I don't know. I still think there is some validity to it…

  25. @NFL
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  26. "Nobody told me there would be more winners than losers"… are you serious? How does winning in a competition work in his mind?

  27. when is FRONTLINE on? What day of the week? I've seen some of the shows on youtube and it is exciting! WHY can't they release these videos on vudu for high def streaming?

  28. I love how the government always wants to tell us what we can and can't do, let's end stock trading too then, that's definitely gambling as well, if the government can't fully control our money, they want to put an end to it, greed is a b!#[email protected]

  29. How dumb can you be to say it's not gambling…they act like betting on games don't take research. You big online sports gamblers do just as much if not more research than these fantasy players.

  30. People have sugar addictions also so what should we start policing what people spending their money on food and over spending their monthly budget

  31. People have sugar addictions also so what should we start policing what people spending their money on food and over spending their monthly budget

  32. Anyone notice how after a contest the winning team always makes perfect sense, yep should have played those guys. It can be gambling, but the people who put in the time make money, so it is gambling to the lazy.

  33. basically if the US govt can't Tax it then they want to shut it down, well the internet and VPN's are changing the game and they can't make laws for other countries so i don't see any way they can stop it in reality, sure they could prosecute the US citizens for using it but there is no revenue in that and they can't touch a company that is not a US company and clearly says they do not take bets from the usa, if customers using VPN's and other ways to get around it then the overseas based company is not at fault and has no control over the actions of their customers and with crypto's looking here to stay this is only going to get much bigger problem for tax revenue for the us govt.

  34. I started with Sports Cash System 3 weeks ago with just $80. I never bet on sports before . Now I got to a $2330 bankroll and everything is going smoothly. To be honest it's too good to be true… See their site: TheSportsCash. Com

  35. Betting without having right source is gambling, but if you are betting on something that is secured than betting becomes business. Germans are the biggest match fixers in the world, luckily couple weeks ago i had an opportunity to meet a guy from their organization, he`s working on skype and if you get in touch with him, You can add him on skype, “moneymaker2270“ but only problem is that he doesn't work with everyone… so good luck

  36. We want more regulations and permission by the goobement. We know what's best for you!
    We be the elites from the nanny state.

  37. If you guys think fantasy is bad try viewing Rocket League crate opening and allow that to open your eyes. Dollar slot machines for 10 year olds.

  38. Now why in the flying fuck would a fantasy sports site tell you, we have more losers than winners. What a stupid mother fucker in that interview

  39. This whole video was so paternalistic it was mind numbing. The government prints lottery tickets. They just put something like this on tv and force your mind into a comatose state of learned helplessness through sheer monotonous repetition.

  40. well what you do is news right ? are you informing people , are you sure or are you approaching th story the most sensationalist way to attract the main stream ignorant public calling knowledge and earn a living with your knowledge, gambling ? I wish you people stop that way of gaining notoriety , if you refuse to do it the correct way just dont do it at all ! Its funny how you people dont pick with trading on financial markets in that way , why is that ?

  41. All Pokie machine or coin slots are rigged against any punters … All Internet gaming sites are rigged against any punters too … No regulations can ever police that ….

  42. I've personally seen it destroy three peoples lives, and families lives… One is my uncle who was at one time a multi millionaire who has lost everything and has scammed my grandmother, family, friends, and coworkers out of MILLION'S over his lifetime, he even scammed IBM for over a hundred thousand in the 90s and had to do 8yrs in prison for it!! All sports gambling! He's now a broke suicidal 64yro bum, never a wife or kids living alone in a shithole still addicted to gambling today… The other two I grew up with from high school, one committed suicide after years of lies and scamming putting family n friends out of thousands, even stealing from his own parents business making it go under causing them to loose everything… My other high school friend has lost an amazing life within the past ten or so years, great job, two houses, his wife and kids, has just lost everything, and now he is currently on the run from the FBI after scamming people out of almost a hundred thousand dollars on eBay, stealing and selling his roommates guns, and stole his roommates credit cards, savings, and identity, all from the one person who took him in helping him when nobody else would, because of gambling… All of them were mainly sports gamblers… Its worst than being a drug addict, at least with drugs the person gets some kind of satisfaction euphoric feeling, and if really bad at most can only use a couple hundred dollars or so in hard drugs a day with everyone who knows them knowing they're an obvious addict and trying to intervene and help them or at least know to protect their finances from them…. Gambling is more addicting than drugs no amount is ever enough you JUST CANT get enough, and can easily loose thousands upon thousands a day or week at any time any where 24/7! Usually a gambling addict is a moderately educated semi successful person with money and the means to gamble at first, having access to large quantities of money or even trusted with other peoples money… The gambling addict is NEVER suspected until its WAY to late, scamming and lying to ANYONE borrowing money off and on for periods of time without people having a clue… two hundred bucks is decent to spend for any hardcore druggy, but to to a gambling addict a couple hundred bucks is only like 20 or 30 dollars to them, its just a tease its NOTHING to them the way they are, just on a totally different level…

  43. Meanwhile our Federal gov’t has selectively chosen not to enforce their law declaring marijuana illegal against those states who’ve legalized it under their respective state law.

  44. This really opens my eyes to all the various things in our society that ARE gambling!
    Bryce Morrow, the college kid who treats it like a business, his explanation of why he thinks it's skill made me put a bunch of stop orders on my stock portfolio.
    I've known it's gambling for years, but something like this reminds me to take the possibility of losing more than I can afford off the table!
    I hope daily sports can be made illegal, then the commercials will be illegal, and that will help people with gambling addictions.

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