Minnesota Attempting to Block Residents from Accessing Online Gambling SitesPublished on 2009-04-30 06:59:21
Earlier today, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety and the Alcohol Gambling Enforcement Division (AGED) announced that they had served "written notice" to "11 national and regional telephone and Internet service providers", instructing them to "prohibit access of all Minnesota-based computers to nearly 200 online gambling websites."
Some of the companies that were served included Charter Communications, Verizon Wireless and AT&T Internet Services.
According to a Minnesota Department of Public Safety press release, "online gambling is illegal in all U.S. states" (oh really?).
John Willems, director of AGED, had this to say:
"We are putting site operators and Minnesota online gamblers on notice and in advance. Disruption of these sites' cash flow will negatively impact their business models. State residents with online escrow accounts should be aware that access to their accounts may be jeopardized and their funds in peril."
The press release goes on to say that "response from the notified ISPs is expected within two to three weeks, at which time issues of non-compliance will be referred to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)."
AGED has also requested that Minnesota residents be blocked from calling the phone numbers of the 200 online gambling websites that have been listed in the order.
The press release closed with this paragraph:
"'In Minnesota, and for Minnesotans, the primary issues are legality, state self-governance and accountability', says Willems. 'In broader context, the long-running debate on online gambling continues to raise significant issues, including absence of policy and regulation, individual rights, societal impact, international fair-trade practices, and funding for criminal and terrorist organizations.'"
*slaps forehead* "Funding for criminal and terrorist organizations"? Why don't they just say that online gambling caused the swine flu as well?
Thankfully there are groups mobilizing to attack this ridiculous request head-on, including the PPA, IMEGA and likely the ACLU as well.
We'll keep you posted on all of the latest developments.
Here is a link to the press release.
Filed Under: Poker Legislation