AGA: several mischaracterisations in New York Times report

The American Gaming Association has cited “several mischaracterisations” in a New York Times report regarding the “key findings” from a sports wagering investigation.

The publication suggested that the industry has used “dubious data” to push legislation efforts by “predicting states would be greeted by gushers of new tax revenue” that it suggested have proved to be “wildly optimistic”.

“That is in part because lawmakers handed gambling companies lucrative tax exemptions,” the article stated. “These exemptions essentially subsidised their efforts to lure customers with supposedly risk-free bets and other promotions.”

In addition, it is detailed that the examination has found that “companies have paid at least eight universities to let them promote gambling on campus”.

As well as calling into question a lack of regulatory scrutiny for Barstool Founder Dave Portnoy, The Times also indicated that “regulators have an incentive to help gambling companies get up and running quickly”. It is suggested that some region’s permit operations to commence before licensing reviews are finalised.

“The sports-betting industry has been creative in devising ways to persuade people to keep betting even after they lose money, but tools to make it easier to quit — some run by gambling companies, others by states — do not always work,” the article in question also noted. 

In response, the AGA said that “as unapologetic advocates for our industry” it will engage with the publication in question, as well as any other outlets, to share facts and perspectives. 

It is added that the “gaming industry is one of the most heavily regulated in the country,” with it added that “there’s an appropriately high bar to clear to receive and retain” licence with any assertion to the contrary labelled as false.

“The industry’s commitment to responsible gaming is a core and clear differentiator for the US gaming industry against our peers globally,” an AGA statement on social media responded. 

“That commitment continues to permeate everything we do and evolve with new technology and our understanding of player behaviour.

“Any amount of unregulated, illegal activity is too much. As regulated businesses, our members have invested billions in human and financial capital in regulatory compliance, responsible gaming tools and training, and problem gambling resources—which have never been better funded.”

Furthermore, the AGA also cited research that advised that sports bettors are familiar with responsible gaming tools (92 per cent), and more than half saw more responsible gaming information in the past 12 months than in previous year. 

“The industry will continue our investment in advancing a safe, well-regulated environment that protects consumers and generates benefit for communities,” the AGA concluded.