Croatia is a beautiful country with an amazing history and diverse landscape. The coastal areas of Croatia along the Adriatic are full of tourists during the summer months looking for fun and games. Not yet part of the European Union but expecting to join soon. Croatia is poised on the edge of a new era in it's long and interesting past. In this changing place poker playing is beginning to take a firm hold in the public's entertainment activities. Recently a

women's competitive poker team was founded. The Pokerica Ladies team was started by three women who all enjoy poker, and played off and on for a time. Having met one another during their pursuit of poker the girls soon found that encouraging more women to get into the game made it more interesting and exciting. As members of Pokerica.net. the team plays regularly at Croatian casinos with some encouraging results. The Pokerica Ladies Team consists of three beautiful young women who have different skills and enjoy different poker games. In Croatia, people still view poker as pure gambling and not a skill testing or knowledge based game. These women have a difficult task getting more women to get involved in poker. They have held four women's tournaments and established a ladies night out for poker. These events have been attended well and interest is gaining momentum. Motivating ladies to get involved in gambling in Croatia is a tall order that is utilizing the Pokerica.net forum to keep the dialogue fresh and inspiring. Zeljka Pencinger, Hana Soljan, and Andreja Begic-Fazlic, are three leaders in the world of playing poker by women, all are dedicated to changing the face of the game. All three are accomplished poker players with a well rounded set of skills in various varieties of the game. Dedication and passion are their strong suits along with the goal of creating a team to take in some serious cash while getting more women involved in this great activity.

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Party Gaming is a company with all the right stuff. It has weathered the economic storm happening around the world with a certain confidence and strength rarely seen in today's business environment.

Jim Ryan, Chief Executive Officer of Party Gaming was recently willing to share his insights into how the company will market it's offerings in the near future. The firm has seen how the casino operations are doing well and has made a decision to market directly to those customers looking for casinos rather than trying to get poker players to come over to the casino games. Research has indicated that customers that went looking for casino play were likely to stay twice as long and be twice as loyal than those who were poker players that switched to casino games. Ryan called "pure-play" casino gamblers a better choice to attempt to attract to the web site. This is an example of search engine optimization and targeted advertising that is the new direction many online companies are using to boost attendance and interest in their web sites. The company plans to do this by launching more branded game content, with Ryan indicating that the Party Gaming casino offering will have an inventory of 50 new games this year. These new games are going to put before the gambler huge "life changing" jackpots that will take the excitement to the next level. Ryan claimed, "Today we have the largest reset value in our Melon Madness Jackpot which starts at $1.5 million," he added, "Nobody else can match that in the sector." The gaming public can expect better promotions, bigger jackpots and more new games, from PartyGaming. In a note from analysts KBC Peel Hunt on a positive tack PartyGaming has both the skill and strategic desire to play a major role in the industry's consolidation. Importantly it is doing this from a position of strength in its core business. Newly regulating markets, B2B and bolt-on acquisitions should deliver healthy growth in 2010 and beyond.

 

 

 




 

 

 

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Techlink Entertainment, is headquartered in Sydney, Nova Scotia, and is a company that specializes in developing and commercializing responsible gaming technologies for the international gaming industry. This responsible gaming solution provides the player with tools and the right information required to play responsibly. The provincial government of Nova Scotia, Canada, has been on the hot seat for it's bold move to offer online gambling to it's residents along with Lotto Quebec and the provincial government of British Columbia. To alleviate the critical often negative press reports and calls from opposition groups to make it safe for the vulnerable gambling public officials from the Nova Scotia government are suggesting there are proven technologies that will address the debate over the social impact of online gambling.

GamePlan from Techlink Entertainment is just the ticket to control and make visible the progress of the gamblers games. GamePlan, took ten years to develop and has undergone a two year intensive testing process on the ground, then reviewed by three independent research firms for effectiveness and reliability. GamePlan is a card-based technology that uses a small plug-and-play machine called the Responsible Gaming Device. Gameplan gives the player information they can use to make informed and responsible decisions when gambling. TechLink Entertainment calls this the “player’s reality check,” providing instant access to all their gaming activities especially valuable is the amount the player has lost or won. It’s unique features include an account summary, self-limitation, self-exclusion, and play limits. Chief Executive Officer and founder of TechLink Entertainment, John Xidos said, "We are just now starting to sell our responsible gaming product lines. The first 10 years were all about developing innovative gaming products that would be able to create new market categories or be creative, and resourceful, additions to existing market categories." Xidos added that the company raised, "...well over $25 million without using venture capital money," "The funds we have raised have come primarily come from Cape Breton and mainland Nova Scotia. This is groundbreaking in and of itself from a financing perspective." Nova Scotia is definitely banking they will come out winners in the publicity war regarding the responsibility issue with this type of investment.



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The Isle of Man is leading the way in proving that having an online gambling industry located in your territory improves the economy. Last year 2009 was a growth year for the Isle of Man's e gaming industry marked by a significant increase in the revenues gained through taxation of the operations licensed by the jurisdiction.



The Manx eGaming Association, has published results of a survey which revealed employment within the remote gaming sector grew by 18 percent in 2009. This astounding rise in available jobs is expected to make another twenty percent leap again in 2010. Taxes being remitted to the government doubled to 11.2 million GBP in 2009 and are expected almost double again in 2010.
The Manx eGaming Association, which is a group of Isle of Man located online gaming firms, has made the survey available to the press to point out significant benefits that the online gambling industry has brought to the islands' people and way of life. Spending by members of the group climbed by 35 percent last year and next year by a possible 26 percent. The members of the Manx Association actually expected even more employment growth but were not surprised by the higher tax revenues and increased industry spending. A weak economy and certain changes in the hiring policies of some members of the MeGA lead to the less than stellar employment increases. Optimism is strong in the industry located on the Isle of Man with the group forecasting a larger boost in employment for the 2010 year. The yearly report by the MeGA is intended to not only show the government that online gambling is profitable but also sustainable even through a turndown in the economy. Having jobs has made life better for the jurisdiction and for the welfare of the people. Much needed taxes are contributing to many aspects of everyday living in an environment that is struggling for survival. Since 2006 the organization has not only promoted it's worth but has given the industry valuable insight into the needs and future developments available to the online gambling industry on the Isle of Man.

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Will people stop gambling online even if measures to make the practice illegal are enforced in the country they live in, the answer is definitely no. Recent studies in America where the effort to ban online gambling has failed in more ways than one show that playing in casinos on the web is still an active form of entertainment for many gambling people in that country.

The Mintel research organisation found that 12 percent of adult respondents to their survey had visited a gambling site in the past 12 months despite laws and enforcement actions forbidding financial institutions from doing business with online operators. Research revealed that men are more likely to play poker and that they visited online gambling venues five time more often than women. Certain movies and cultural influences have glamorised gambling in Las Vegas. This has not however led to an increase in the interest Americans have with terrestrial casinos shown by the slow but steady decline in attendance in casinos on the ground. Online activity is picking up the slack with a slow but steady increase in internet use. Billy Hulkower, who is a senior analyst at the Mintel organisation, confirmed, “This shift has been gradual, which suggests that this is not a result of the recession. Casinos may be losing audience to the increasingly compelling entertainment offerings in the home; such as HDTV, high-end video game systems and the Internet, including internet gambling.” People can visit many casinos right from home on the net, and risk little time and money checking out the new games and venues available. The demographic age of between 25-34 were the most likely to visit a land based casino in the past year, that's 56 percent of the respondents. Most had planned the trip well in advance and had a definite budget to work with. It was suggested that the young people who were mostly male were not as affected by the tough economic times facing many in America today.

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Cyprus's failure to legalize gambling establishments on the island has created a burst of activity on casino web sites. The activity in Cyprus reached approximately €2.5 billion in 2008 and it is expected top over €5 billion by 2012, a government official has commented recently. Cyprus is struggling with it's identity as Turkish politics invade it's space and calls for more action to protect Turkish cultural influences. The government of the island has steadfastly refused to give a legal face to land based casinos and gambling on the grounds that it is immoral and not in keeping with the principles of the people. Online casinos are widely available in Cyprus operating through legally registered servers in other EU countries. The House Legal Affairs Committee, chairperson, Ionas Nicolaou, said, “Ninety-five per cent of electronic gambling services in our country operate legally because they are provided over the internet and there is no authority (in Cyprus) where one can apply for a permit,” Most of those servers are located very close to Cyprus on the island of Malta. The absence of any specific legislation, creates a loophole in Cyprus that makes organized online gambling illegal and the offence chargeable but only if the perpetrators are caught in the act. Individuals who are playing online casinos from their homes are not breaking the law. Global Betting and Gambling Consultants, have completed a study on internet gambling in Cyprus that has shed light on the number of Cypriots that are playing and how much they are spending. The numbers are revealing and have prompted the House Legal Affairs Committee to discussed the problem and have suggested that legislation was coming to get the situation under control. Lawmakers propose to amend the law with a proposal that would exclude electronic gambling from this list of services that the E.U considers universal.

 

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John Kelly, the chief executive officer of the Responsible Gambling Council in province of Saskatchewan, Canada says recent studies have found that students are in the fastest growing segment of the population to develop problems with gambling Apparently young men between the ages of 18 and 24 have a high rate of obsessive gambling behaviour, compared to other groups in the province. The Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority is funding an advertising campaign to educate young people about the dangers of gambling. The Responsible Gambling Council has recently rolled out the program at the University of Regina an obvious choice considering it's target audience. The experts say young people who are experiencing their first taste of freedom at university are especially vulnerable to online gambling and the stimulation of the games.

"People who are 18 to 24 are the most at risk to have a gambling problem," Kelly said, "Same as many other problems that people who are 18 to 24 can get into. So if you are 20 years old and you're going to have a gambling problem, you are much more likely to develop it at 20 than you are at 50." The new program is designed to educate not to preach, called "Know the Score" the campaign has one area that specifically speaks to those who gamble on the net. Video gaming has introduced many young people to the use of the net for entertainment and has made the youth of the day comfortable with gaming on the web. Unfortunately when it come to gambling online you don't have the same control that comes with mastering a video game. Kelly stated the goal of the "Know the Score" campaign is to help students consider all the potential costs, and repercussions of their actions before they start to play for money.

 

 

 

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Internet criminals have reportedly infected as many as 12.7 million computers according to the Associated press. Authorities in Europe have finally brought down one of the world's worst cases of theft of sensitive information on the internet. The system stole credit cards and online banking information from infected computers around the globe.

Dubbed the 'Mariposa' botnet, the virus has infected at least half of the Fortune 1000 firms and more than 40 banks. According to investigators in Spain in co-operation with private computer-security firms, they say they have three alleged ringleaders in custody after cracking the largest incidence of cyber crime ever experienced. A captain with Spain's Guardia Civil, Cesar Lorenza, told the Associated press, that the arrests of cyber criminals is a rare event and is significant. The suspects in this case were not smart hackers but were associated with some people who were and they are the ones still at large. This criminal enterprise surfaced way back in December of 2008 and the masterminds have been building their network of information gathering botnets ever since. The article revealed that the suspects were not flashy criminals with big cars and fine clothes but were seemingly ordinary Spaniards with no criminal past. According to researchers the criminal activity spread to more than 190 countries.
Software firm Panda Security headquartered in Bilbao, Spain was a partner in bringing down these botnet operators, along with information from Canadian based Defence Intelligence and researchers from the Georgia Tech Information Security Center. Senior research adviser with Panda Security, Pedro Bustamante, said, "I don't think there's anything about this guy that makes him smarter than any of the other botnet guys, but the Mariposa software, it's very professional, it's very effective," adding, "It came alive and started spreading and it got bigger than him." The three individuals "netkairo," 31; "jonyloleante," 30; and "ostiator," 25 if convicted may face six years in jail. It is not known yet how much money the group stole of whether any of the funds will be recovered.

 

 

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The old Indian card game 'Teen Patti' is gaining new popularity in a new world, the internet. Online audiences across India are turning to the old game for fun and entertainment in droves. The social network portal Ibibo in India has been promoting a movie starring Ben Kingsley, using the card game as a hook. A version has been introduced that caters to a large and diverse audience that spans many demographic sectors, while keeping the integrity of the game in tack. Ibibo CEO Ashish Kashyap, says the game is immensely popular among thousands of youthful players while they interact socially at the same time they play. Kashyap commented that, "The game is built with the vision of getting people connected and network via this live multiplayer gaming format. The uniqueness of this game is that it is social. Rather than being one-player platform, Teen Patti allows six players to play live simultaneously on a virtual table while sitting anywhere in India," he added, "Since then the game has seen a phenomenal response across different genres of players and is growing by 200 per cent per month on month active users," India is considered a new and open market opportunity that may be able to return huge profits to those companies entering the industry there. India has recently opened up to online gambling licenses available for the Internet and has some top international operators trying to secure India's first online gambling license. The popularity of online gambling in India is obvious with the value of the market reported to be $5 billion and the overall betting market at as much as $40 billion. Other media companies are cashing in on the trend with Nazara Technologies a mobile entertainment company planning a version of 'Teen Patti', said, CEO, Nitish Mittersain. Take a movie, a popular old card game, and a few entrepreneurs and your sure to find a success story.




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Microgaming is growing it's poker network once again.

Goldbet the online gambling group 365's poker division has announced it will join the reliable and popular Microgaming Poker Network. In business now for ten years GoldBet is owned by 365 Media Group licensed in Austria, which is one of the leading online bookmakers in Europe. Goldbet a prominent sports book will be able to give it's sports book customers access to online poker with it's deal with the Microgaming. The GoldBet, casino and poker director, Luigi Amadio, said, “We are delighted to be entering into this new partnership with Microgaming and have found that its online poker product offering more than lives up to its reputation as best in market. With simplicity, usability and security being key parts of our mission statement, Microgaming software delivers in every respect. CSR is also a key component of the way we operate as a business, and we were delighted to find that our values in this respect were reflected in Microgaming’s own socially responsible programmes and activities.” GoldBet has been a member of ESSA, an association dedicated to the guardianship of sports integrity across the sports betting industry for a long time. The company takes part of it's profits and applies them to it's charity of choice the “Children’s Villages” an international organisation working to help orphaned children. The CEO of Microgaming, Roger Raatgever, commented on the partnership, “We are proud to welcome yet another established and respected sports book operator to the Microgaming Poker Network. We are working closely with Goldbet to ensure that our product is completely tailored in order to ensure smooth integration with their existing platform.” Microgame SpA's dedicated People's Poker Network for Italian players will continue to be offered by Goldbet in that jurisdiction. Goldbet accepts Neteller and Moneybookers in the Euro currency and is available in several languages.

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