Sweepstakes and Slot Machines

Saturday, November 14th, 2009

Some may argue that Beulah Park in Ohio is taking a big risk by installing 30 sweepstakes machines. Beulah Park management does not think so. The only problem is that several cafes in recent months have been raided and shut down for offering similar such sweepstakes.

The problem with these sweepstakes games is that they are designed to at least give the appearance of playing at a slot machine. However, they operate very differently from slot machines.

With slot machines a player inserts money to get a chance to spin the reels of the machine. A random number generator dictates the outcome of the spin. By chance and chance alone a player may be lucky enough to win big.

The sweepstakes games operate differently. Players are still paying money but instead they are paying 25 cents a minute for access to the internet. However, instead of surfing the web for YouTube clips, player opt to play the sweepstakes game.

The winner of each game is in many way predetermined at the moment the player purchases their minutes. That is not the case with slot machines; the winner is never determined until the moment the reel line up in a winning pattern.

The predetermined nature of the sweepstakes game makes it akin to a twisting of a soda cap. The moment a consumer purchases that bottle of soda they are a winner even if they do not know it yet.

Patrons at Beulah Park can play their sweepstakes machines for 25 cents per minute and have a chance at winning cash prizes as high as $500.

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