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There is more to my story – part three – The Dark Side of the Sun
Posted on May 29, 2015

Derek Webb, founder of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling continues with his personal insights 

A few weeks ago my photo appeared in a national newspaper with the caption below it “Casino interests … Webb” and not even a question mark in sight. Also included was the text “Mr. Webb has insisted his campaign against the bookies was not aimed at protecting his casino interests.” Whilst I have explained my story before on Politics Home Central Lobby, there are still some who prefer to ignore the facts and concoct false and malicious insinuations designed to denigrate me and the Stop the FOBTs campaign.

Just to clarify – I have never owned a casino and do not have any commercial interest in any casino. I do have shares in a US based casino supply company, which also owes me a fixed amount of debt, which is being paid in fixed installments. 


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There is more to my story -the good, the bad and the ugly
Posted on May 22, 2015

Derek Webb founder of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling and the Stop the FOBTs campaign continues his personal story and gambling insights

I have explained how we defeated the bad guys, PGIC. We were the good guys as recognized by the US government in their federally appropriate tripling of our damages. The ugly guys were ShuffleMaster (SHFL), the public company we sold the non-British Isles rights to Three Card Poker™ to. During the trial against PGIC we discovered that SHFL had some evidence of the fraud in the patents being asserted against us, which they did not disclose to us when agreeing to defend us against PGIC. Sometimes the ones who want to appear to be your friends end up causing you the most harm.

After winning the jury trial against PGIC, a litigation investment entity approached us to buy a piece of the case. We agreed to do this as PGIC was not in a strong financial position but intended to drag out the proceedings to appeal. It meant that we had covered our expenses regardless of what transpired. We then prevailed in a judicial review, and accepted the PGIC settlement offer in late 2007.


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There is more to my story – Part One – Exposing the Bad Guys
Posted on May 15, 2015

Derek Webb founder of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling and Stop the FOBTs shares his personal story and gambling insights

On New Year’s Eve in 1998 I was at home in Britain when I got a telephone call from a reporter for the Las Vegas Sun newspaper, who asked: “How does it feel to be sued by a public corporation?” As I was not aware of the suit I could not make any comment. The journalist was looking for any quote to take out of context and add colour to a corporate PR puff story originated by Progressive Gaming International Corp (PGIC).


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Gambling Behaviour Part One – it’s the product stupid!
Posted on April 29, 2015

Derek Webb, the founder & funder of Stop the FOBTs and the Campaign for Fairer Gambling, explains gambler and product interaction.

You’d probably be surprised to hear it, but there are even some professional gamblers who are also problem gamblers. Sounds impossible, but I must have met around 100 of them. And when I say “professional” I don’t mean someone who espouses their opinion of their gambling history. I mean someone who is known in their peer group to be successful and able to provide a living income solely from gambling.

They have to be gambling at an activity that is beatable. Most non-regulated gambling is beatable if you are stronger than your opponents, for example cash gambling at backgammon. In terms of regulated gambling, it is generally acknowledged that racing, sports, blackjack and poker are all beatable, given the right conditions and the right skills. Whilst there are unusual gamblers who have exhibited unusual skills at certain other gambling activities, they are unusual exceptions.

In respect of race and sports betting, it is getting harder to be a professional in Britain. Legal opportunities to get cash on are diminishing as betting offices routinely refuse even suspected break-even gamblers. Also remote online sites close accounts or restrict bet amounts. Blackjack is becoming harder as casinos have learnt much more about the skill techniques and more shuffling machines are being used to diminish skill opportunities. Poker is still a viable beatable activity.


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International news from the FOBT suppliers
Posted on April 20, 2015

The founder of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling looks into whether specific communities and demographics are being targeted by the companies behind fixed odds betting terminals.

Great Britain is the only country foolish enough to allow FOBTs in high street betting shops with roulette at stakes up to £100 per spin every 20 seconds. However, as FOBTs are just one form of electronic gaming machine (EGMs) it is useful to consider what the FOBT suppliers say about EGMs when trying to understand FOBTs.

A recent issue of the international trade magazine Global Gaming Business (GGB) featured two relevant articles. One article, with the title of “Target Youth”, was a write-up on Inspired, one of the two FOBT suppliers, quoting Lucy Buckley, the Director of Strategy and Communications at Inspired. She stated that the younger audience is more interested in quick play games and a “place a quick bet during my lunch break experience” than having to visit a special destination.


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testimonials

Anonymous testimonial 3, February 2013

“Firstly, thank you for starting this campaign. I am with it 100% and offer my services in any shape or form that can assist. I lived in NZ for a number of years, and have always gambled but never thought I had an addiction. 2 years ago I returned and started playing these machines. It is a similar story as you will hear all the time. It starts with small bets, and eventually 100 pound spins losing thousands. I won't go into it too much, but these machines are terrible and I know and have seen many more people like me that can't walk past a bookies without donating money to the bookies relief appeal. I am now in remission and have counselling. These things very nearly killed me, and I’ve lost most of my family. I am sick to death of bookmakers opening new shops and advertising constantly. This country is turning into 1 big casino. I am happy to provide further info if required. Thank you for taking the time to do this.”
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