Domain Names Equivalent To Billboards?

New argument against KY gambling domain seizure

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Seizing a domain is like seizing a billboard, argue the attorneys appealing Kentucky governor Steve Beshear’s attempt to take possession of 141 gambling domains. Even if domains were forfeited, users could still access gambling sites via IP addresses, which become destinations without signs over them.

That argument isn’t likely to fly with Beshear, who demanded international gambling sites block access to Kentuckians because of potential children’s access, loss of tax revenue, competition with the horse industry, money-laundering, and lack of consumer protections.

Other arguments not likely to fly with Beshear but were made to the Kentucky Court of Appeals last Friday:

  • The previous Circuit Court judge does not have the jurisdiction to allow the Kentucky government to seize international domains registered in countries where gambling is legal.
  • Domain names are not gambling devices.
  • Domain names can only be seized after criminal convictions; there have been none.
  • Kentucky is prohibited by the commerce clause of the US Constitution from regulating interstate and international commerce.

The state has rebutted that attorneys for the defendants have no standing to challenge seizure of the domain names because they won’t name their clients. The ACLU argues that revealing their clients would be a violation of the Fifth Amendment since the state is coercing them into self-incrimination.

The state’s lawyer, apparently the best our cash-strapped state could afford, accused gambling sites of running a “massive offshore criminal conspiracy” and masquerading as legitimate business.

Someone is likely to tell him that if it’s not illegal in the countries their based, it’s legitimate business. And technically, gambling’s not illegal in Kentucky either, if you count horse racing and lottery.

One of these days logic will return to our politicians, locally and nationally, but it won’t be this day obviously.

Domain Names Equivalent To Billboards?
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  • http://www.flightschoollist.com Jack

    I say if people want to gamble their money away then let them. The government should stop butting in!

    • http://www.haircarehints.com/ Hair Care

      I don’t think I agree with that, so you’re saying the Government should allow people to smoke, take drugs and not have to wear motorcycle helmets just becuase it is their life? I believe there is a point where the government has to step in to keep society running that way we’re all accustomed to. After all, I’m sure all that gambled money hasn’t helped the global financial crisis.

  • http://netguidecentral.com Net guide central

    We all know gambling can be a source of fun. but for some people it has been really destructive financially. So it is good the government is setting a check on those gamblers.

  • http://www.recordweb.com Scott Neuman

    People have a right to spend their money how they chose. This is just another example of KY looking to make money off the hard work of others. It goes against everything that our framers wanted us to have. Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Unless you live in KY.

  • http://www.xsbet.com Warner Stevenson

    The issue here is and is not about online gambling but rather the precedent it will set for any government agencies to confiscate a domain name without due process as well as State government eliminating competition from their own In-State businesses.

    How can kentucky have jurisdiction over a company that is not even located in KY and that is not breaking any laws in the country where that business is legal and licensed?

    If this goes through, than what is stopping the state from also taking your website domain name just because they don

  • http://www.billboardsadvertising.com Billboards

    What a sham! The government will always let the people gamble their money away, as long as they get a piece. They do not get a piece of the online gambling profits, so they want to restrict it so people visit Kentucky Casinos, where it is state regulated and they get a piece. No?

    • http://www.giveawaylegalforms.com/ Legal Forms

      :) How true is that, the Government is happy to let you do something harmful, as long as they get a cut. Anyway, such is life.

  • http://k12tshirts.myshopify.com/cart Mark

    Kentucky needs to face the facts about the global world the internet brings into our homes, sensorship is not the American way. The internet is a provider for freedom of speach, and business practices for everyone to restrict it would just plain be wrong, this is not N. Korea, or China. To support America go to

  • Johnny

    This is just plain stealing of property without due process.

    Its as sickening as the eminent domain problems we face today with hard real estate where the govts just take what they wish from people leaving little legal recourse to the property owners.

    This is theft by Kentucky plain and simple.

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