When former U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt said, “Where a trust becomes a monopoly the state has an immediate right to interfere,” he might as well have been talking about GambetDC in Washington, the troublesome mobile betting platform that DC bettors are basically stuck with.
Maybe not for much longer, though, that is if the bill that DC Councilmember Elissa Silverman has just presented turns into law, her so-called Sports Wagering and Fair Competition Amendment Act of 2022 which would allow commercial sports betting mobile apps to compete.
Councilmember Silverman’s measure is also supported by several of her fellow council members – Charles Allen, Mary Cheh, and Brooke Pinto – and it is an attempt to address the issues regarding GambetDC that area bettors have brought up, with Silverman saying:
“Residents deserve an online app that works, taxpayers deserve a program that brings in money for the District, and we all deserve a system where we don’t hand huge contracts to a preferred company and its subcontractors without even looking at the competition.”
Apparently, that is exactly the problem with GambetDC, and Silverman is convinced that now is the time to legislatively address that situation.
The potential amendment to DC’s sports betting bill is good news for area gamblers tired of having no choice in mobile sportsbooks but bad news for GambetDC, the glitchy sports betting app that currently holds a monopoly on the nation’s capital’s online betting market.
Despite promising to be “world class” and to “make live betting and wagering on sporting events just as easy as watching them,” GambetDC’s sports betting services have garnered endless complaints from DC users due to the slow and unreliable nature of its live app.
Councilmember Silverman presented her amendment as a means to correct what she considers a poor choice that was made before a clear picture of what the DC sports betting market would look like could be identified, saying in a statement:
“We need to turn the page on this embarrassing episode.”
It makes sense considering the fact that GambetDC has been losing money – it lost $4 million in its first year of operation – and that area sports bettors have been using other methods to place their mobile action.
Whatever initial vision DC lawmakers had regarding how the District’s legal sports betting market would operate, it is proving to be ineffective since the DC Lottery’s single mobile app is providing substandard service and losing millions of dollars.
Those mobile glitches have forced area bettors to travel elsewhere to place their bets including nearby Virginia and soon Maryland where there are plenty of mobile sportsbook apps to choose from that all work efficiently because if they don’t, their competitors would eat them alive.
Teddy Roosevelt understood well over a century ago that in the U.S. market competition is king, and he would no doubt appreciate the irony of GambetDC’s monopoly existing in the very District in which many of his antitrust battles were fought.
Now it appears as if the state is beginning to interfere, and Councilmember Silverman’s new measure will hopefully get the attention and debate it deserves as our nation’s capital edges towards a freer sportsbook market and thus a happier resident bettor clientele.
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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager. Email: [email protected]More info on Mike Lukas
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