Over the span of the past few months, online gambling in Pennsylvania has seen significant development which led to its legalization and the operation of iLottery claiming to bring more to the players. Following several complaints coming from operating casino developers in the field, now the management of the state iLottery have agreed to bring changes to the way gaming offerings are being marketed in the field.
The month of June was the first one to see the official launch of iLottery games on a state level which are now considered legal and are available for participation. Prior to the first day of operation, there had been some concerns expressed as to what players would be offered. It was known that Powerball, Mega Millions and other draw games would remain reserved for the land-based retail stores which are currently in operation. As for the online lottery games promised to offer new online games based on the well-known scratch-off method.
They include Big Money SLINGO®, Bigfoot, Cash Buster Towers, Cash in the Lamp, Crossword Cash, Foxin’ Wins, among other titles. Even though it was specifically said that no slot machine games are going to be featured within the range of the new iLottery, Pennsylvania’s casino operators still expressed their discontent with the way its operation has been going. According to them, the games might not be slot machine ones, but they very much resemble the ones offered in brick-and-mortar gambling venues.
In iLottery’s defense, it was stated that there are many gaming offerings which have the appearance of slot machines but are in fact, not. Such offerings could be found, for instance, in horse racing tracks like the Presque Isle Downs and Casino where historical racing slot machines are on offer for the customers. Following the aforementioned complaints expressed by the 13 casino developers in the field, the state Department of Revenue made it clear that it is going to take action in relation to the issue.
iLottery Allegedly Interferes with Casino Developers Rights
The way these online games are being marketed in the public by Scientific Games International will be changed and they would no longer be called “slot-style” or “casino-style” games. They were legally introduced to the field with the help of Act 42 of 2017 which is what made Pennsylvania the seventh US state to offer lottery games in the online space.
Over the span of its first month of operation, the state generated some $21.6 million from people playing the new games, whereas the prizes awarded throughout the month reached some $18.7 million. The popularity of the gaming offering is also considerable for the first 30 days of operation, as there have been some 45,000 registered players.
According to the complaints officially filed to the administration of Tom Wolf, the gaming offerings appeared to be very similar to the games typically provided by gambling facilities. In response to the complaints, the way the iLottery games are referred to will be changed, but not the way they operate in their basic principle.
Revenue Secretary C. Daniel Hassell who oversees the Department of Revenue, which includes the Pennsylvania Lottery made it clear that the way iLottery is promoted in the public space is considered a mistake and therefore should be mended. In addition to that Mr. Hassell states that further actions would be taken, if the operation of iLottery does not come to an end.