Massachusetts Operators To Face Questions On Sports Betting Limits

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Massachusetts sports betting

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission will ask questions of operators regarding sports betting wager limits. 

The MGC Thursday began a discussion about sports betting wager limits. The MGC will have a public roundtable and an executive session with licensed operators at a later date, before deciding whether to amend state regulations regarding limits. 

“What’s the fairness to the patron in the notification? And if you’re turning off a winning wagerer, are you turning off a losing wagerer?” interim MGC chair Jordan Maynard asked. 

Senator sends letters on responsible gambling

The MGC discussion came a day after the Wall Street Journal published a story about federal scrutiny over sports betting operators targeting of high-value players and VIPs. 

Sen. Richard Blumenthal sent letters last week to eight operators, including FanDuel Sportsbook and DraftKings Sportsbook, urging them to stop using data to target players with gambling problems, the Journal reported. 

“The bonuses and credits, the promotions and pitches, the VIP hosts. It has to be seen as a whole, and there may be aspects of it that should be prohibited or much more rigorously restricted,” Blumenthal told the Journal.

Massachusetts questions on sports betting limits

Commissioner Nakisha Skinner provided a nuanced viewpoint on the matter. 

“For me, this is about fundamental fairness and transparency to the consumer, to patrons, where you have a situation where a patron is losing and being encouraged through outreach, by an operator’s VIP staff, and incentives. What’s the balance when that same patron begins to win?” Skinner said.

“I understand there are probably legitimate business decisions that are made by our sports wagering operators here. I don’t discount any of those. But I do think there should be a way for patrons to really understand what might get them limited.”  

Skinner seeking ‘sweet spot’

Skinner asked the same question that many have been wondering.:

“How big of a problem is this, and can we find that sweet spot such that the sports wagering operators are protected in terms of their business model and the consumer is protected?” Skinner said. 

Hard sports betting questions coming

More discussions are coming on the topic, commissioner Bradford Hill said.  

“Today’s the start of a conversation that’s going to continue, and I think the public needs to understand that we are going to take this very seriously,” Hill said.

“I like the idea that we have a roundtable on this issue, but also feel strongly we need to get our operators in here and ask some very hard questions. And if we have to go into an executive session, so be it.”