Wagering, or gambling, on video games is not illegal, but there are those who believe it's immoral. Is it immoral? What's immoral and who decides? I don't recall filling out such a questionnaire, so it sure as hell wasn't me.
My problem is with people who force their morals on others, as though their philosophies are for the betterment of mankind, and mine only seem to benefit car salesmen, strippers, and Satan.
Such moral watchdogs can be, however, extremely useful. They can help keep gaming honest, and ensure access is restricted to those of legal age. But they must be restrained and contained—in other words, controlled—as their lust for power knows no bounds. Our freedom is at stake with these people. Let's not forget the millions of people that gave their lives during the World Wars so we can recklessly throw our money away on the Internet.
Allow me to compare and contrast video game gambling and the swinging polarity of the moral compass.
It's legal to gamble online. You can do this through online casinos and the multitude of online poker sites. It's just traditional gambling conducted in cyberspace. What can be considered new is gambling on the outcome of video game competitions. While there's nothing new about this form of wagering on competition, the medium is new and therefore unproven.
Gambling on slot machines, roulette, and blackjack are games of chance. Putting your money up against another opponent in a video game competition is a game of skill. Thanks to Virgin's Richard Branson and EA, it's now possible to set up an online video game match for money. Choose your game and pit yourself against a competitor. The site only acts as host of the match, taking a small fee for facilitating the setup. If you think you're so good, put your money where your mouth is. I see no harm in that. If you're good, you stand a chance. If you end up declaring bankruptcy as a result, then you have severely overrated your gaming skills. Or, in other words, you are a complete idiot.
I don't need a law prohibiting me from any form of gambling, including wagering on my skills just because you are a moron.
Where concern must be focused is in the interest of fair play. Here's where the moral watchdog mongrels can be put to good use. Are these companies running an honest game? Is it possible to cheat, and, if so, how? What systems can be implemented to monitor and detect cheating and fraud? And how do we penalize, punish, torture, and murder those responsible for such crimes?
Running a gambling operation used to be a crime. Therefore, only criminals were involved in such an enterprise. Since it's been legalized, huge corporations such as Trump, MGM, Bally's—not to mention Native Americans and even the Canadian Provincial Government—own and operate casinos and various other forms of gambling. Hell, there's probably even weekly Bingo at your local Catholic church!
So much for morality when there's money to be made legally. Let's face it, morality is subjective. Just don't subject me to it. Let's just ensure the powers that be are running a good clean game.
Anyone wanna' bet I've pissed off at least 36% of the readers?
Date: January 27, 2012
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*