Opinion: Official league dates back with revenge on Florida DFS Bill
A new DFS invoice in Florida requires closer examination official league dates.
While much of the gambling world has turned its attention to the upcoming pact between the state of Florida and the state of Florida Seminole tribeA bill on fantasy sports was put on the agenda for the special session of the legislature.
While fantasy sports have become an afterthought for many people as legal sports betting expands across the country, millions of users continue to flock to both seasonal and daily fantasy sports. The legality of fantasy sport has since been called into question 1990s.
As part of the compact approval process, efforts are made to authorize fantasy sport in the state. However, the legislation contains the strictest official dates Mandate still. This would almost certainly jeopardize the ability of smaller operators to continue to exist in the EU Sunshine state.
Uncertainty of Fantasy Sports in Florida
Back in 1991Florida’s Attorney General Robert Butterworth was asked whether paid participation in fantasy sports leagues violated state gambling laws.
In his reply, Butterworth referred Florida Statute Section 849.14which states:
Anyone who bets, bets or bets money or other objects of value as a result of a test or a competition for the skill, speed or strength or endurance of humans or animals. . . or who will knowingly become the custodian or custodian of money or other valuables wagered, wagered or wagered on such outcome. . . should be guilty of an offense.
Not so easy of skill versus chance
The then attorney general stated that the law forbids betting on competitions from Skill.
He noted that in the early state jurisdiction, even bets where bettors were attending the event were problematic under the law.
Butterworth closed Opinion of AG 91-03 on the determination that in his opinion paid fantasy sports competitions would violate Florida Statute 849.14.
Well, that opinion has obviously had little effect, given that most of the major fantasy sports were practiced in the state and there has been no known criminal prosecution of any fantasy sports operator recently. However, the opinion continues to cast a dark shadow on the operators in the state.
Long lasting legalization efforts
The modern day efforts to legalize DFS in Florida at least go back to them 2015.
Recent efforts have taken a back seat to legalize sports betting more generally in Florida.
The independent efforts to legalize the competitions met with little approval.
The upcoming pact was agreed between the Seminole tribe and the governor Ron DeSantis provided evidence that the state’s treatment of fantasy sports has changed. But unlike the contract that provided the language for sports betting in Florida, fantasy sports were left without many details.
A new invoice with details
The details were filled in when a series of bills were posted on the Florida Senate website on Friday. Was under the bills S 16A the Fantasy Sports Contest Amusement Act, which was up for discussion on Monday afternoon.
The legislative findings of the draft law state:
It is the intent of lawmakers to ensure public confidence in the integrity of fantasy sports competitions and competition operators. This law is intended to regulate the competition operators and individuals who participate in such competitions and to provide consumer protection regulations in connection with fantasy sports competitions. In addition, the legislature states that fantasy sports competitions, as this term is defined in s. 546.13, include the skills of the contestants.
The bill is pretty standard until it isn’t
The fantasy sports bill is pretty standard. However, it is perhaps more protective than other laws on the same subject and better reflects gambling regulations than regulations governing fantasy sports.
The bill is pretty pro forma until the consumer protection provision is reached.
The alleged consumer protection provisions include the requirement that:
A competition operator may only use statistics, results, results and other data relating to a professional sporting event that have been obtained from the relevant sports association or a body expressly authorized by the sports association to provide such information to competition operators.
Official league dates? For fantasy sports? Why?
This is the first known fantasy sports bill to require the use of official league data, and it has to be done effectively by operators Purchase data available everywhere for free.
The bill doesn’t seem to differentiate between seasonal or daily fantasy sports. It is unclear why an operator cannot rely on publicly available information, which has been the norm for decades with few reported problems.
The debate over official league dates has been going on for some time, having evolved from the failed search for integrity fees. Even in the few states that have officially adopted a league data mandate, this has only been done for regulation In-play betting.
A departure from history
This is what makes this proposed legislation such a departure from the norm.
The mandate neglects the long history of fantasy sport, which used to read newspapers and compile statistics from boxing scores.
Fantasy sport has changed, but not in a way that has challenged the descendants of the data used to determine the results.
An interruption in the official league data
Not only is it the first state to include a requirement that fantasy sports use official league dates, but it also contrasts with the language in the sports betting contract.
The compact language requires:
Any source of data and the corresponding data used to determine the outcomes of all sports bets must be (i) complete, accurate, reliable, timely and available, and (ii) suitable to determine the types of events and bets for which it is used.
The Pact’s requirement appears to be a standard mandate that some might claim requires a competitive data market. In contrast, Fantasy Sports Bill does not refer to the fact that data is complete, accurate, reliable, etc., only that it comes from sports leagues or their selected partners.
What should you do with it?
This bill will likely be discussed in depth during the special session and the language and requirements are subject to change.
It remains uncertain whether the official league data release will survive the debate.
However, it is unclear how the provision is somehow consumer protection.