Gambling on This Question of the Day

homer simpson fantasy football

Today’s question of the day: are fantasy sports gambling, or are they games of skill?

Eric T. Schneiderman already turned in his answer. As the New York Times reports:

The New York State attorney general on Tuesday ordered the two biggest daily fantasy sports companies, DraftKings and FanDuel, to stop accepting bets from New York residents, saying their games constituted illegal gambling under state law.

But isn’t fantasy sports about picking the best players? Doesn’t it involve some skill, or at least a basic knowledge of sports teams and the people who play in them?

The NYT explains that fantasy sports may have started that way, but they’ve taken a few chances lately:

Fantasy sports companies contend that their games are not gambling because they involve more skill than luck and were legally sanctioned by a 2006 federal law that exempted fantasy sports from a prohibition against processing online financial wagering. That view is being challenged as fantasy sites have begun offering million-dollar prizes and bets on individual sports, such as golf, mixed martial arts and Nascar races, magnifying the element of chance and making the exemption more difficult to defend.

So. What do you think? Do fantasy sports constitute illegal gambling? Is this New York ban fair?

Also, if you play fantasy sports, I’m curious to know if you make any money off it, or if it’s mostly just for fun. The closest I’ve gotten to fantasy sports is the annual office March Madness pool, which I have consistently lost because I do, in fact, play it like a game of chance.

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