Is Fantasy Sports Like Gambling?

Is Fantasy Sports Like Gambling?

Fantasy Sports are allowed in many territories in the US in which online gambling is illegal, but it does blur the lines. Betting on the outcome of games within an online market might seem like straight up gambling but the truth is a little more complex than that.

The strategy of the game is the first thing that comes to its defence in the gambling versus fun battle. The way in which players assemble their team and the skill at which they play leads many to compare this to a skill sport instead of a gamble. The argument that states like New York are making is that this is no different to other forms of skill based gambling like cards or online bingo. Sites like have both of these types of gambling but are still restricted by licencing, which some say should be the case for Fantasy Sports.

Jeremy Kerley #11 of the New York Jets makes a catch for 23-yards against the Oakland Raiders during their NFL game at Coliseum on November 1, 2015© Getty Images

The lines between gambling and Fantasy Sports are becoming increasingly difficult to discern, which is a major problem for the regulators. Last year, more than 50 million users played Fantasy Sports of all descriptions as the football, baseball and basketball seasons were in full swing. These users would argue that it is a game complemented by the leagues that they follow, not solely for gambling. The issue comes in when real money profit and loss is concerned, as it seems to be a workaround for the system.

The main argument against legalised online gambling is that it can take over the lives of the users, which is what many report with Fantasy Sports. Avidly watching transfer windows, counting every point and becoming agitated with the results can change the fantasy into a cruel reality. The desire to pour more cash into teams and the urge to keep

A general view of the goal post against the blue sky as the Denver Broncos host the San Diego Chargers during NFL action at Invesco Field at Mile High on November 22, 200
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