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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Are Virtual Casinos in Second Life Legal?

An article in (4/4/2007) reports
that Linden Lab, the creator of the online virtual
world, Second Life, has invited the FBI to visit
the site to investigate its virtual casinos. According
to the article, "hundreds of casinos offering poker,
slot machines and blackjack can be found in Second
Life." Gamblers in Second Life wager with Linden
dollars, which can be purchased with and redeemed
for real currency through the Second Life Lindex
currency exchange.

The article goes on to claim that "most lawyers agree
that placing bets with Linden dollars probably violates
US anti-gambling statutes. " Brett Britton, an attorney
specialising in emergent technology at the law firm
Squire, Sanders & Dempsey in Tampa, is quoted
in the article as saying that Linden Lab could potentially
face criminal charges under the 1970 Illegal Gambling
Business Act or the Unlawful Internet Gambling
Enforcement Act.

To date, the FBI and the US Attorney's Office for
Northern California have declined to comment about
the legality of gambling on Second Life.