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An Online Betting Boom is Born
Celebrity proposition bets (also known in the business as "props")
are the latest rage in the billion-dollar online-betting business a
sort of sports book for the Us Weekly generation.
"People want to be participants, not just observers," says Calvin
Ayre, founder and CEO of Bodog.com. "They like betting on celebrities
because it makes them feel closer to the stars."
Ayre’s site takes between $2,000 and $20,000 of action on each of
more than a dozen pop-culture scenarios, from the traditional (Who will
win "The Apprentice: Martha Stewart"?) to the absurd (Will Oprah Winfrey
convert to Scientology?). But don’t expect to put down a deposit on a
new mansion based on correctly guessing the sex of your favorite star’s
kid. Celebrity props don’t generally offer the limitless big paydays
associated with sports bets.
Wagering on current events has been commonplace in the U.K. since
that nation passed the Street Betting Act in 1960. "In England, they
allow bookmakers to take bets on anything that isn’t fraudulent," says
Bill Thompson, a professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and
author of "The Encyclopedia of Gambling."
Las Vegas casinos, however, operate under a completely different set
of rules. "The gaming board is very strict that you are betting on
actual contests," Thompson notes. The one exception: boxing, where
winners are sometimes determined by a panel of judges.
That has driven much of the nontraditional wagers to offshore casinos
in places like Costa Rica, where BetOn-Sports has 11 full-time employees
coming up with new props daily.
entire article at:
NY Daily News
2005 Online Casino News