4serendipity - 4:29 am on Mar 9, 2012 (gmt 0)
When people are caught RED HANDED there isn't much wiggle room
I don't think that there is much dispute here. I'd really like to think that the case against wasn't fabricated, although, after reading some more about the case, I think there might be an entrapment argument to be made (although probably not a very strong one).
What does leave a bad taste in my mouth is the process of enforcement, the law in question, whose interests are being served, the ramifications of this case, and what sort of slippery slope we might be on.
I do think that Bodog was in violation of a US law (but one whose legitimacy is in question). Moreover, they seemed to operate quite brazenly and openly in a legal gray area (really, what is the point in spending big $ in US advertising is your service is illegal for US citizens?), so I can't think that they couldn't foresee some sort of heat coming down on them. With these things in mind, it might be easy to not be sympathetic to Bodog or Calvin Ayre. But we must remember that his business is perfectly legal in Canada and much of the rest of the world, it just is forbidden to US citizens.
With all of this in mind, I just have a hard time feeling good about the government's seizure of the domain, or that the generic top-level domains are all under US jurisdiction. I don't think that it will set a precedent that will deter illegal online activity, but could have a chilling effect on legitimate online businesses want to develop strong branding associated with their domain.
Moreover, the legitimacy of Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act has been internationally challenged, and the WTO has ruled against the US in its enforcement of this law. This resulted in Antigua and the EU filling claims against the US. These claims were later settled via the US granting undisclosed concessions, which were not disclosed due to the fact that they were considered a matter of national security (I'm not making this #*$! up. I really wish that I was).
I do believe operating a gambling site on the internet in the US is as plain view as you can get.
I have a hard time thinking that you've thought this through for very long. Should foreign countries be able to confiscate Americans' online properties just because the properties in question happen to provide information about something that is illegal in their respective countries? We can't forget that online gambling is perfectly legal, legitimate business. I don't think that you're trying to argue in favor of broad, wholesale censorship, or at least I hope that you're not. Again, classifying information itself as "illegal" doesn't sit well with me. I can visit a gambling site, but I have to make an active choice if I want to sign up for an account and place bets.
just ask my railroaded friend who now has irrational fears of picking up soap
You should suggest a liquid soap dispenser. As a side benefit, the liquid stuff doesn't leave nearly as much of a soapy film on the tub, leading to much less frequent scrubbing.
Thanks to everyone else that's been posting. I've enjoyed reading everyone's posts and about the Bodog case in general.