Harry Potter spoiled…thanks to gambling

The latest Harry Potter book sold something like 7 million copies on its first day, as readers were eager to find out which “major character” dies or something like that. I haven’t read the books, so I’m not sure what that’s all about, but here’s an interesting story: two months ago, newspaper reports gave away the spoiler, thanks to betting. Don’t read the rest of the story unless you want to read the spoiler.

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Nowhere, PA

Some people think that the perfect place to live does not exist. They’re wrong–it’s Moorestown, NJ, according to Money magazine. With average SAT scores of over 1150, students there, I’m sure, will have no problem overcoming the stigma of being from New Jersey.

It’s a stigma, to be sure. As a native of Atlantic City, New Jersey, I’m doubly stigmatized. If I tell people I’m from New Jersey, they inevitably say something stupid like, “Oh, you’re from JOISEY!” I just look at them and say yeah, but I don’t talk like that because I’m from South Jersey, so I have more of a Philadelphia/Baltimore accent. On the other hand, if I say that I’m from Atlantic City, they usually laugh and then are nice enough to spend the next five minutes explaining to me what a total shithole it is because “I saw something on TV a few years ago that said there was still a lot of problems there.”

Nice move, buster–you’ve just managed to, within mintues of meeting someone, insult the place that his family has called home for three generations. You might want to look up the definition of tact.

Anyway, the real news here is that the best place to live in the US is no mirage, the 28th best is. Really.

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Canadian gaming illegal?

Today, nearly every nation or state grants some sort of gambling franchise, usually in the name of revenue enhancement, i.e., cash. With the police cracking down on illegal rivals, these gambling monopolies are usually pretty lucrative for everyone involved. In Canada, though, the authors of a new report believe that Ontario’s state-sanctioned gaming industry may be illegal.

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According to the LVRJ, ‘Life goes on’ in Las Vegas after the London terrorist attack. Events like that show how trivial much of the “news” is, particularly the sort of thing covered on this site. Still, if you are interested in the world of gambling as seen from Las Vegas, there are several stories out there.

An unpopular Kansas scratch-off game claims to be the first interactive lottery, but I remember reading about New Jersey doing this at least a year ago, and with better results.

In one high school, smoking and drinking have declined while gambling rates are up–nearly a quarter of all students gamble at least once a week. Does this means that teens are being taught to channel their impulses in a more socially useful way, i.e., participating in an activity that is heavily taxed by state governments? It would be ironic if “education lotteries” contributed to the growth of teen gambling.

A conference at Mandalay Bay proved that Internet poker is getting bigger and bigger.

But, in order to build, you must destroy and, with little fanfare, the demolition of a historic casino is beginning this week.

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Wireless wishing

In the true spirit of blog-dom, here’s a story about a story that, for me, is more interesting than the original story. The State of Nevada has recently approved wireless gaming in casinos, and I think that the industry might be interested in hearing the reaction from a gamer’s website. While these aren’t your hardcore gamblers, they probably do represent a more tech-friendly demographic than average.

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