Wyoming Online Poker | Wyoming Poker Rooms
Since the UIGEA was passed in 2006 it has been extremely unclear what the legal status of online poker is, with arguments raging back and forth about whether poker is a game of skill or chance. On April 15th 2011, known in the poker community as Black Friday, the Department of Justice and FBI launched an attack on online poker, forcing the biggest names such as Full Tilt Poker, PokerStars, UB and Absolute Poker to cease and desist real money operations inside the United States. These cases were brought under the false understanding that poker is a game of chance, and are still being fought heavily.
The law with regards to online poker is simply unacceptable in its current state, and people on both sides of the debate see that there needs to be a more clear-cut and overreaching piece of legislation. The absolute worst case for poker players would be a complete ban of online poker, although the massive amounts of tax dollars that the online poker industry could offer happily make this outcome slightly less likely. As far as legalization and regulation are concerned, this could take place either on a national level or, more likely, on a state level. The largest potential problem with state-level regulated online poker is that players may well only be able to play with other players from within their state borders, massively reducing player pools at sites.
Wyoming online poker legislation is entirely non-existant. In fact, as far as gambling and poker go - as absurd as it is to continually lump the two together, it seems to be done by lawmakers and general public alike - Wyoming is extremely conservative. They are one of the very few remaining states in the USA to not even have a state lottery, and the extent to which they are unclear on poker and other games involving wagering means that even friends meeting on a friday night for a casual game at one of their homes could very well be breaking the law. That they have no clear stance on live poker is, of course, indicative of how gray the area of online poker is.
With that said, things are perhaps not as bad for Wyoming online poker as they appear. The two things mentioned in the previous paragraph are very likely set to change, with Wyoming currently taking steps towards introducing a lottery, and at the same time establishing a clearer - and positive - stance on live poker play. While in the past this would be a far cry to legislating online poker Wyoming players can be hopeful that the recent Black Friday debacle has pushed the issue enough to the forefront that any discussion involving legislation and regulation of poker will automatically take both live and online play into consideration.
Unfortunately up until this point all the poker playing world can do is speculate. The political beast behind change to online poker legislation and regulation is a slow-moving one, greased by money from many different parties with conflicting interests. The issue of state legislation which could then see Wyoming online poker in a vastly different light as online poker in other states muddies the water even further. The only thing we can currently be certain of is that change is in the wind, and with any luck we will see legislation and regulation which provides safe, fun and viable online poker for all who wish to play.