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It is this fall that Loto-Québec wants to launch its online poker site to compete with 2000 other sites where it is possible to play over the Internet from Quebec. Jean Charest's Liberals have created an independent Committee to monitor the site. Loto-Québec wishes to pick up its share of the market valued at 80 M$. According to Michel Munger, journalist for channel money from VAT, Loto-Québec group sees the world leader of poker PokerStars online, both as his greatest rival and as a source of inspiration. Crown Corporation hopes to get a share of the market as large as PokerStars, which is is captured 35 percent of the market 10 years over the years.
Earlier in recent weeks, one could read in the Quebec news that the discount rate of the poker online at Loto-Québec would be at least 83%. It is still more elegant to write '83% discount rate' than "17% tax" or "17% rake". This morning in The press under the pen of Marie-Josée Nantel, was published an article on the discount rate anticipated by Loto-Québec for its online game room. The "discount rate" to Hold'em should be 92% according to an amendment to the regulation on 7 July last by the Council of Ministers. In other words, the rake paid by online poker players will be 8%. No other information has been made. Is 8% up to a maximum of xx$? If there is no flop, should the tax be paid? No details in this regard.
Loto-Québec defends this relatively high percentage compared with other poker sites online by mentioning that sites such as PokerStars.com have the advantage of not paying tax, to accept players from the United States and have account to nobody.
As a poker player, we see this amendment on 7 July as good news. But not for Jean Leblond Quebec Centre of excellence for the prevention and treatment of the game (CQEPTJ) at the Université Laval, who stated in an interview with a journalist from the Gesca group: "the increase in the discount rate is certainly the greatest danger which is exposed population for online games.
According to him, more Loto-Québec will have a high discount rate, the more the chances of pathological gamblers on the Internet. He added: "when people start to play, important it is to keep playing. When it returns them more money, there are more likely to create events that are going to hang them. It leads them to believe in a defect of the machine that chance cannot explain. While if the discount rate is low, they lose their interest in the machine. It is a simple principle of strengthening.
No study has however support his position. This is enough to give good conscience to Loto-Québec if someday rake the poker online at Loto-Québec passes from 8% to 17% for example.
Is a high rake really desirable?