Colorado Prepares to Ban Sweepstakes Cafes

Published May 8, 2014 by OCR Editor

The debate over the legality of Sweepstakes Cafes in Colorado continues.

The Attorney General's office of Colorado recently issued a statement that any games that are played at Sweepstakes Cafes are considered online gambling, and must be approved by the voters. Carolyn Tyler, Communications Director for the office, said that it is irrelevant whether the games at these cafes are games of chance or skill.

She commented, the definitions of a skilled game is "the ability, coming from one's knowledge, practice, aptitude, etc., to do something well. As long as there is an element of chance in any of these games, they are not games of skill." 

What Are Sweepstakes Cafes?

Sweepstakes Cafes are an up-and-coming phenomenon in Colorado; they are cafes that offer items or services for sale (usually time on the Internet), and as part of the purchase, the customer also gets a certain amount of shares in a cash sweepstakes. There are two options of finding out if they have won: either customers can find out right away, or play a simulated slot machine on a computer which will slowly reveal to them whether they have won any part of the sweepstakes.

Illegality

Last week, a bill was introduced to the Legislature seeking to ban these cafes. The bill is currently sitting with the House Business, Labor, Economic and Workforce Development Committee.

Proponents of Sweepstakes Cafes say that outlawing these cafes in one form will only cause more to spring up in different forms, either with different game parameters or different software. Proponents also say that the cafes are not actually offering gambling, as they are not taking individual bets. 

As of now, the Attorney General's office is still moving ahead with the bill to outlaw.

See also

Sweepstakes Scam and How To Avoid Them

Colorado Sports Gambling Sees $25 Million In First Month

Cali Internet Cafe Closures Spike Gambling Online

Colorado Truck Driver Wins $90 Million Powerball Jackpot

Colorado Sports Betting Launches Despite Coronavirus


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