53000 lucky customers of OLG Casinos across Ontario have been given early access invitations to try the new online casino launched by the corporation before anyone else.
In a move that the OLG is hoping will increase revenue as well as offer greater variety and access to it's player base, the corporation has established itself as an online casino presence through PlayOLG.ca. Now Canadian gamblers will be able to log in and try their hand at digital versions of their table and casino floor favourites such as blackjack, poker, baccarat, roulette, and video slot machines. This also pairs nicely with the option to participate in the provincial lotteries, Lotto 6/49 and Lotto Max, both available with Encore, by purchasing their tickets online. The online market is already well populated with reputable and successful casino operators which will make it difficult for the provincial options to work their way in, though the law may well continue to work in their favour, making entry and success easier as time goes on.
November 4th saw the announcement made by the OLG stating, "eligible members of OLG's Winner's Circle Rewards program will participate in a short-term, soft launch of the new site before it becomes available to legal-aged Ontarians in the coming weeks." This brings Ontario in line with other provinces such as Quebec, Manitoba, British Columbia, and the Maritime Provinces, which have been coming online with their own casino sites. The provinces are green lighting their own casino sites as illegal and unwelcome outside providers are being pushed out of the Canadian market and the grey areas in the law are removed in order to keep Canadian money spent on gambling entertainment in the Canadian economy. Currently there are approximately a half million Canadian gamblers actively participating in betting and gambling with offshore companies such as PokerStars which has been a near constant favourite in the Canadian market.
While there is an increased risk of a gambling addiction surfacing within the online gambling community as opposed to those who need to go to a real world location. There are limits and guidelines put in place by the OLG in order to help players prevent and avoid the pitfalls as well as support for those who need help with addiction. Some of these guidelines put in place are limits on play time, lottery ticket purchase limits, self-assessment and risk profiles for players, loss limits, optional self-exclusion to allow players to self select, and password and internet activity monitoring tools for parents.
The profits drawn in by the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation go towards supporting provincial programs such as hospitals and other priority projects as determined by the provincial government. OLG is optimistic that their latest addition to their offerings will draw in more money to bolster the funds available for Ontario's infrastructure.
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