Online Gambling GrumblesEthics Are A Two Way Street
Gambling Grumbles, the dispute resolution division for online gambling of Gambling.com has dealt with thousands of cases in its three year history. From missing payments to ignored inquiries and everything in between, if it can go wrong chances are they have dealt with it at some point.
The site is dedicated to mediation between gaming sites and players, and its efforts are summarized and published on the site. Spend just a few minutes perusing the articles and it becomes all to clear that not every case is the result of a casino error. Julie Sidwell, Gambling Grumbles Administrator tells us, “It is both surprising and disappointing when we discover a case is not as it was presented. We believe in and expect fair play from both sides of the table and aren’t shy about making that known. Our role is not limited to one of advocates for the players; rather we are advocates for the industry. Dishonest tactics from either side hurt the industry as a whole and simply can’t be ignored.
Frivolous lawsuits of all types cost customers small fortunes as insurance rates increase. Shoplifting, without question raises prices dramatically for all consumers. So it should come as no surprise to anyone that nefarious play in the online gaming industry has cost players and operators alike fortunes in terms of increased play - through requirements, more stringent identification policies, and in many instances, cumbersome cash-in procedures. It is a clear and indisputable example of the many paying the price for the actions of a few.”
Case Example One
"Santa Clause Doesn't Work Here"
This grumbler received notice shortly after registering and making a deposit at Blackjack Ballroom, ”Your account has been locked".
He continued to share his frustrations, "They said I came up on a 'high risk' list, and my account was automatically locked. They explain that casinos share account information yet when I signed up as a real player it states all information is confidential and will not be shared!"
He continued, "As long as I meet the requirements of this casino’s promotion, why should it matter? No where do they state that my account will be verified or that if I have an account with another casino then I wouldn't qualify for their bonus!"
"I have been pounding them all day with e-mails and appeals and reasons why I feel they are wrong, hopefully you can hit them from a different angle."
Unfortunately, we cannot do that. There is no angle to argue this. Provided a casino returns the initial deposit, which they did, then the casino is not only within their right to decide who is and is not welcome at their site, if they wish to stay in business, and have a bank willing to process their payments, they would be remiss to not exert that right.
This grumbler, and any other experienced online player knows very well that having an account at another casino would not, could not, and did not create this situation. Having SEVERAL accounts at another casino may well create this situation, but certainly not having A single account at several casinos.
We explained to him, just as we have many times on these pages, "Internet Fraud" while perhaps an over used and therefore diluted phrase, is a very serious reality for online casinos. You cannot reasonably expect to do business with casino A in a dishonest manner, and then expect casino B to welcome you with open arms and wait for you to repeat the behavior there. Most casinos of any size have spent vast sums of money to see to it that our "reputation" follows us. Our behaviors have consequences, and this is simply one of them.
When a casino acts dishonorably, (or even runs a few hours late in the allocation of a bonus), chances are pretty good that casinos name will be trashed publicly in open forums. Players feel they are protecting one another against the casino that erred.
When a player participates in unethical behavior, the casinos likewise protect each other, only they do it far more professionally and more organized than we as players do. They do it through High Risk Databases, and there are several forms of nefarious play that will land you on one or more of those lists. Multiple accounts, credit card charge backs, manipulation of software, or using a credit card that doesn't belong to you, just to name a few.
This should not be considered a misuse of private information. The casino promises your information will not be sold or rented for marketing purposes. NO casino is going to promise you that when you register your information with them it cannot or will not verify the validity of that information.
It all boils down to treating the casinos with the same ethics and levels of honesty we demand of them, and remembering that they offer a service in exchange for money hoping to realize a profit, and Santa Clause is NOT on the Board of Directors!
Case Example Two
"Ethics Are A Two Way Street"
Regarding Colosseum Casino Jerry asked, "Is this casino a scam?"
He explained further, "They accepted me as a member, accepted my credit cards, allowed me to play and continue to make purchases and now because they have to pay me they are going to claim that I have a dispute with another casino. Please help!" His final question, "What can I do?"
We wanted to find out if there was anything Jerry, or we could do, but first, we needed to know a few things about Jerry. So we did two things, sent him some detailed questions, and started some research.
These were the exact questions we presented Jerry:
Have you been accused of opening multiple accounts anywhere, ever?
Have you threatened to or actually disputed a credit card charge, ever?
Has a member of your family opened an account anywhere you already hold one?
Have you ever had a disagreement regarding bonus funds?
Have you ever attempted to use a credit card that was not issued in your exact name?
Jerry wrote back promptly assuring us everything was fine, he had no disputed charges in his history, no problems anywhere and he simply didn't understand this. It appeared he was pretty sure this was all a grand plan for the Colosseum to get out of honoring a $300 cash-in.
Before we ever even contacted the Colosseum, or received Jerry's response to our questions, we knew the history.
January last, Jerry opened an account at a couple of different casinos, in February; he disputed the charges and claimed he had never even heard of them. He was already locked out of several casinos.
As for the Colosseum owing him money, the account was opened in August, and closed in January. From day one to "D" day (disconnect day) there were $365 in purchases made, and $490 in cash-in's honored, so, it would appear Jerry came out ahead of the game.
Jerry denies the charge-back accusations, and firmly believes the only reason the Colosseum is paying his most recent cash-in is due to our inquiries into the case.
Once again, because it merits repeating, change your e-mail address, change the spelling of your name, or change your snail mail address, it matters not. Your conduct with online gaming will follow you from place to place, period.
For those of you who have written asking why you have to fax your credit card statements, proofs of addresses, utility bills, and drivers’ license to your casino now, this case serves as a prime example of why these precautions have become necessary.