Cutting the Wire: Gambling Prohibition And the Internet (The Gambling Studies Se
David G. Schwartz
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University of Nevada Press
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The Wire Act achieved new significance with the development of the Internet in the early 1990s and the growing popularity of online wagering through offshore facilities. The United States government has invoked the Wire Act in a vain effort to control gambling within its borders, at a time when online sports betting is soaring in popularity. By placing the Wire Act into the larger context of Americans’ continuing ambivalence about gambling, Schwartz has produced a provocative, deeply informed analysis of a national habit and the vexing predicaments that derive from it. In America today, 48 of 50 states currently permit some kind of legal gambling. Schwartz’s historical unraveling of the Wire Act exposes the illogic of an outdated law intended to stifle organized crime being used to set national policy on Internet gaming. Cutting the Wire carefully dissects two centuries of American attempts to balance public interest with the technology of gambling.