2008 Year in Online GamblingPublished December 22, 2008 by OCR Editor
Biggest jackpot winner of the year and new developments in the world of online poker.
This has been - it always is - an exciting year in online gambling.
New products are offered and new gambling niches investigated. As players, we only benefit from this pluralism. Along with them come new and higher jackpots, new gambling markets open up and the ball keeps rolling.
On the other hand, online gambling is not yet fully adopted by governments, or governors; Kentucky is a case in point.
Nevertheless, our end of year summary is a positive one, and the 2009 predictions just as much.
A jackpot of this magnitude is not won every day. Not even every year. In August 2008, Sylvia P. of Canada hit stratospheric platinum when she won the Beach Life Progressive Jackpot at Joyland Casino. When the slots stopped spinning, her winning tally had racked up $4,188,719.
Other multi-million winnings have also been won this year. Such was the $5,556,753 jackpot won by Klaus E., who played Mega Moolah on Jackpot Ballroom Casino.
Behind the scenes, the casino operators and affiliate programs - the people who think up those promotions we constantly seek - have also made some major moves.
In perhaps the largest merger in online gambling and sports betting history, affiliate programs CPays, Webroute Affiliates and William Hill all joined hands. The new super affiliate program will take form in 2009, and offer players excellent deals, software platforms and supports.
In October 2008, we met over 1,000 casino affiliates at CAP Euro Barcelona. While affiliates were making deals, food was served, wine poured and our OCR Live! team was filming it all - there was one beneficiary from the popular event, and that is the player.
This is a specially interesting category, where one would ask: What is there to invent in such a lush market as online gambling?
Well, Cool Hand Poker offers something new. The new poker room targets a class of players that has often been left out. Beginner and medium players, who fear running into a poker shark who will rip them of their funds, can play at their leisure at Cool Hand, where by limiting the number of tables one can play at a given moment, manage to keep the pros out of interest.
The 2008 UEFA European Football Championship. Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Need we say more?
No news from the US, so no surprises there. But there have been positive developments elsewhere.
The UK experiment has proven to be a success, with the UK Gambling Commission on top of licenses, enforcement, and issuing guides for players. South Africa is another example of careful, thought-out steps in the direction of regulating the local market.
In this global expansion that has local markets develop a market, Online Casino Reports too has spread and now counts over 30 sites - in different languages, with a focus on products that cater to the local gambling communities.
The global crisis has already had an effect on land based casinos in Las Vegas, among others. Whether it will have the same effect on our online gambling industry is yet to be seen.
In the year which is about to end online gambling has shown resilience in the face of challenges, and continued growth. We can hope, and do our best, that it continues in the right direction.
Happy New Year!