The "epidemic" of cryptocurrency gambling has begun on Twitch. Today, streamers showing viewers successful bets in the casino and playing the one-armed bandit make millions, and tomorrow they risk going to jail.
Lawyers for Wired analyzed the situation around the general fashion for streaming cryptocurrency casinos and came to disappointing conclusions. First of all, of course, they concern the streamers themselves and the illegal promotions they are promoting.
One of the most famous examples of big gamblers is 30-year-old streamer Tyler Niknam, also known to his 1.5 million subscribers under the nickname Trainwrecks.
For a couple of hours, he showed 25,000 viewers a live stream of the game in one of the popular crypto casinos, Stake, which is his main sponsor. Niknam's winnings sometimes reached $400,000 in cryptocurrency equivalent. It would seem, live and be happy! But there is one "small" minus it's illegal.
The fact is that even on the site of the cryptocurrency casino Stake it is written that it is impossible to register players from the USA due to the lack of a gaming license. However, this does not in the least bother Niknam himself and his American fans who use VPN to bypass this restriction.
Wired experts, in turn, believe that such "machinations" by the relevant services may well be regarded as the promotion of illegal gambling. An aggravating factor was the fact that Niknam and others are promoting gambling sites that are not licensed to carry out legal activities in the territory of at least one of the states.
American lawyers from the largest law firms agree with their colleagues from Wired in the opinion that streamers are playing with fire and will very soon find themselves in "tough legal territory." They understand the main motive, but big money and opportunities will inevitably lead them to the dock because of the attendant risk. Not to mention the fact that many viewers are minors.
Of course, resources like Stake and Roobet gained their popularity precisely due to the generous injections of money into the pockets of “opinion leaders''. One of the participants in the gambling market Duelbits even offered streamer Adin Ross from $1.4 to $1.6 million a month for broadcasting the game in their "establishment". By the way, Ross's profile is now blocked due to the use of a smartphone while driving and the parallel broadcast of what is happening in the car.
According to Wired, 64 of the site's 1,000 popular streamers were streaming the game to cryptocurrency casinos or gambling sites, encouraging viewers to join them. This type of stream was especially in demand from April to May of this year. Some broadcasts even recruited over 100,000 people watching the game in real time.
Another problem is that most of these streamers are losing “house money” from casinos. In other words, the resource fixes a certain amount that simply circulates within the site. While the streamer himself does not spend a dime. It is a pity that many viewers are convinced otherwise.
Matthew Rinaudo, aka Mizkif, said he received an offer from a casino willing to pay $35,000 per hour, more than double the standard amount of his sponsors for 10-hour streams throughout the month. He conducted several gambling broadcasts in April, claiming that gambling houses themselves funded his account with specific amounts. One of them was a $5,000 deposit. Despite the obvious benefit, the streamer stopped broadcasting gambling after 5 such broadcasts. According to him, the reason for the decision was the feeling of "deception" of their subscribers and "morality".
The funny thing is that certain streamers promoting crypto gambling are defined by Twitch itself as “role models for the community”. The site staff also noted that 21% of viewers aged 13 to 17 need worthy role models. However, it hardly makes sense to add gamblers to such a list, even if they pretend to be such “on camera”.