|Peer-to-peer betting has long been popular in Europe, and it is now swinging its way to the States through sites like Betbug.com, however, it is unclear whether the trend is legal under America’s stringent gambling laws.|
Peer-to-peer betting lets you wager directly with another person via the internet, bypassing the bookie or casino. And this is where it gets complicated. Some believe the practice is legal because of the lack of a mediator, but legal analysts claim this is irrelevant; a bet is still a bet.
A Betbug spokesman said, “We feel that Betbug is no different to two guys putting money down on a Lakers' game.” But the Department of Justice is just begging to look into the operations at Betbug to see if it is in violation of gambling laws.
The gambling trend is modelled after music and movie file-sharing sites, which have also had their fair share of controversy. Punters see if anyone wants to bet on a subject, which can be anything from politics to fashion trends. They then place their money in an account on the site. After the event the winner collects, minus a small commission that goes to the host. It is a cheaper way to gambling, taking the middleman out of the equation, meaning you can make more from your bets.
Betbug.com is going to start taking bets in the Summer of next year.