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Monday, May 31, 2010

Australian Gaming And Racing News: Aussie Racing Club Buys Pokies Clubs, by Greg Tingle - 31st May 2010

The Australian gaming, igaming, racing and overall business sector continues to evolve, as the old adage of only the strong will survive continues to hold true. Media Man and Gambling911 crack the whip at the Aussie racing and pokies sector with this special report...

The illustrious Melbourne Racing Club has further ramped up its business interests, solidifying its future, with a $50 million fab deal to buy what is understood luck seven pubs. In the purchase the MRC will pocket ownership of up to 380 pokies aka "one armed bandits". Something tells us the 'Virtual Racing' and 'Gone To The Races' slots are going to be the most popular, but old favorites 'Cleopatra Queen Of The Nile', 'Penguin Pays', 'Black Rhino' are going to be hard to beat. Aussie punter's are also calling for a 'Monopoly Slot' upgrade.

Key Players And Deal Makers Inc

Vendor - was receiver and manager PPB on behalf of former owner Rick Munday.

NAB (National Australia Bank) is the primary lender (appointed PPB after loans were not paid).

The well known and cashed up racing club finally bit the bullet and got knee deep in the pokies sector. They will own the leasehold on the popular hotels strategically scattered around Melbourne.

The Munday family had to sell up after what you could call overcapitalising, a time when the world's financial sector started bleeding.

The PPB was appointed to sell the portfolio in April, when it was discovered Mr Munday could not participate in the Victorian government's well publicized auction of 27,500 or so gaming licences...breaking up the Tabcorp and the Tatts Group duopoly and virtual strangle hold on the sector.

Upgrades including to accommodate for smoking laws are partly responsible for the blow out in financials.

The agent, Mr Musca lists the following in the portfolio: Golden Nugget Hotel in The Players, Court Jester, Golden Fleece, The Sugar Gum, The Cove, and The Grand.

As in a global financial crisis, there's big winners and losers, and the Australian racing industry is doing what it needs to do to shore up its future. If it means them getting into bed with pokies and the like, that's what they will do. Media and racing identity Alan Jones has called for unity in the sector.

Meanwhile, further aboard in France PartyGaming has shored up its deal with PMU (Pari Mutuel Urbain). Party is incorporating its online poker product - solution into the deal.

We think the France - Party deal may have lit a fire in the belly of Australian racing and tipped them it was time for some off track action, if they are to survive in the long haul. Credit where credit is due.

Media Man is preparing a proposal for "the powers that be" in and around the current Asia Pacific racing sector to further shore up their financial future.

Gambling911 and Media Man remind readers to bet with your head, not over it, and have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming inc sports betting and racing, is just one of a dozen business sectors covered.

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Sunday, May 30, 2010

PartyCasino News: Superstar Award From PartyCasino

PartyCasino.com made one lucky slots player richer to the tune of over $1.8 million earlier this month while awarding another with a new Maserati Gran Tourismo automobile.

The Gibraltar-licensed site revealed that a player using the pseudonym ‘Arkry222’ took home its life-changing Gold Mega Jackpot on May 7 from just a two-dollar spin on its SuperStar game.

The 48-year-old player, who lives on a horse farm, won $1,888,198 and, as the Gold Mega Jackpot was tied into the Grand Win Auto leaderboard promotion, his fortune saw another rewarded with the new car.

"It was a Friday night and I wasn't far off going to bed and I was sat at the computer," said ‘Arky222’.

"I actually had the volume down on the computer as I had the television on. I was playing SuperStar and all of a sudden these squares came up. I hit complete and the screen lit up in loads of colour. Then the number appeared on the screen. I had never seen so many numbers in my life; it was an international phone number."

The player’s partner of 13 years was similarly disbelieving and called out ‘that's play money’. However, the realisation of what had just happened soon hit home with the ‘infrequent player’ revealing that the win would definitely alter his life.

"I was numb," said ‘Arky222’.

"I was on a different planet. It was then that I realised that I had missed a call from the VIP team at PartyCasino.com and it started to sink in a little bit more. I hadn't been feeling well all week but now I was just in this strange kind of happy limbo. I went back into my account and there it was, over $1.8 million

"I think I am going to have to spend the money on the standards of a holiday, a new car and new house. It will also allow me to be become more flexible with my working hours as I am going to go freelance. I will also have time to play a few more games on PartyCasino.com and I love the concepts of Melon Madness and The Circus."

The Grand Win Auto leaderboard promotion was due to run from May 6 to 19 and would see the player sitting at the top when the Gold Mega Jackpot was hit awarded with the new Maserati car or a cash equivalent.

"It didn't hit me until the next day that by winning the Gold Mega Jackpot someone else had won a Maserati," said ‘Arky222’.

"All I can say is to enjoy your drive, mate, and get in touch. Fancy taking me for a spin?"

"We'd like to congratulate ‘Arkry222’ on winning the Gold Mega Jackpot," read a statement from PartyCasino.com

"He is a super guy and very deserving.

"We would also like to congratulate the winner who enjoyed the spin-off from this win. We thought the Grand Win Auto promotion would last longer than one day but that's casino."

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Virgin Casino Launches Noah's Ark by WagerWorks

Virgin Casino, part of the leading online gaming company – Virgin Games, has today announced the launch of Noah's Ark, a new slot from WagerWorks. Based on the highly successful IGT game, which has proven popular with players around the world, Noah's Ark is a 30-payline slot that has an exciting Split Symbols™ feature.

The Split Symbols™ feature counts for two symbols – not just one. A winning payline may have as few as three and as many as 10 matching symbols. In a great twist, every wild symbol can count as a split symbol, maximizing the player's wild wins. The Split Symbols™ feature gives players the best of both worlds: lots of wins and big win potential too. There is also a Free Spins bonus with a 281% average return-on-bet per free spin.

Warren Eloff, Product Manager at Virgin Casino, commented:
"WagerWorks have created yet another fantastic slot. Noah's Ark is one of many great recent additions to our ever expanding casino, which offers games from a number of top developers. With the delightful animating animals that celebrate wins, the Split Symbols feature and free spin bonus, slot fans will love playing Noah's Ark and enjoy winnings of epic proportions!"

Founded in 2004, Virgin Casino has over 1,000,000 players and nearly 200 casino games on its site. Through the introduction of a custom built Virgin Games platform in 2008, Virgin Casino seeks to provide its players with the widest possible choice of casino games. Noah's Ark adds to a growing selection of games that can be found at Virgin Casino from games producers including WagerWorks, Cryptologic, Freemantle, Endemol and Ash Gaming.

To play Noah's Ark visit www.virgincasino.com

Notes to editors:

About Virgin Games:

Virgin Games (www.virgingames.com) launched in June 2004 and has quickly established itself as one of the leading gaming websites in the UK. Virgin Games comprises three distinct offerings:

Virgin Casino, offers content from a range of games suppliers including WagerWorks, Cryptologic, Freemantle and Ash Gaming, bringing consumers classic casino games like Blackjack and Roulette, as well as great feature slots like Monopoly, Rubik's, X-Factor and the highly popular MegaJackpots progressive games, with a current jackpot value of over £2,500,000

Virgin Poker, part of the Boss Media network, offers a huge array of games and content for beginners through to experienced pros – as well as the most generous loyalty scheme in the industry

Virgin Bingo, part of the Virtue Fusion network, offers cash prizes worth thousands of pounds in the progressive jackpots, as well as Virgin prize bingo and a range of unique Virgin Games bingo games.

*No U.S or Australian players. World Casino Directory

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Saturday, May 29, 2010

PartyCasino News: Safari Soccer Cup, Monthly Players’ Bonus, Viva Las Vegas and more

PartyCasino.com News

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Friday, May 28, 2010

Gamers Worse Than Bikers; Gaming Like Cocaine Scum, by Greg Tingle - 28th May 2010

Gamblers, gamers, insiders, outsiders and everyone else...you are likely familiar with some of the "attack journalism" having been thrown around at the Australian, UK and American gambling industry. Now, a new wave of attack by another small but vocal part of the community, media and academics has hit the gaming industry... yep, video games and the like. Media Man and Gambling911 take the consul by the hand, throw on our 3D glasses, wire up the Wiki and Wii and plug into The Matrix with this special report...

Australia Down Under

History - circa 16th Feb 2010

Ex South Australian Attorney-General Michael Atkinson tells news media and anyone that will listen "Gamers were scarier than bikers", and then psych Wayne Warburton... "Gaming was worse than smoking". Interesting, since a number of Australian teachers and parents have found that by incorporating video games in class has helped children learn some subject matter better! Folks, always be on the lookout for "junk science".

Scary Elders And Thought Police Go Global

The appropriately named "Pope" ... Steve Pope in Pommie Land UK tells us 2 hours of playing video games is equivalent to doing a line of cocaine. Pope, tell us, where do you get your coke and games from, so we can check it out? ... just kidding dear Pope.

"Spending two hours on a game station is equivalent to taking a line of cocaine in the high it produces". It is the fastest growing addiction in the country and this is affecting young people mentally, as well as leading to physical problems such as obesity".

Media Man and G911 are interested in seeing the proof in the bold Godly claims.

UK's Evening Post has digging for dirt er facts, regarding youth and gaming. Their message ala "stay on message" as in the political world...

A trend in young people in the county are seeking professional help after becoming hooked on the fantasy world of console games. Skipping meals, class and stealing from parents to feed the habit.

Kids stealing from parents is nothing new, and it goes back long before video games were invested. Unfortunately, stealing is part of the human make up. For the record, Gambling911 and Media Man do not steal, but we're just saying ok.

Two hours of playing good, entertaining games (not boring ones) can produce the same high as taking a line of cocaine! Well, that's what the apparent self appointed expert claims.

Figures are being quoted by the so called experts which we think don't deserve the space here, as the figures are not scientific ala (Japanese Whaling). G911 and Media Man will get back to covering the casino "whales" and "super whales" soon enough, for those of you scratching your head at this point.

Ok, a couple of quotes from "Jack", thanks to the UK rag...

"Playing on my games console was all I wanted to do and it was the first thing I thought of as soon as I woke up. I would play for hours on end without even realising. It was like it was a demon that had got inside my brain and I just couldn't’t stop. If my parents tried to stop me playing, I would just flip. I lost touch with my mates, started doing badly at school and became an angry and aggressive person that wasn’t the real me.".

Sounds like he might have been playing Grand Theft Auto, or maybe Resident Evil, Hellboy, The Terminator, Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare or a combination whopper burger with the works.

Pope, a counsellor and therapist, advises he is seeing increasing numbers of youngsters suffering from game addiction. "

"A lot of young people get themselves into a situation where they use video games as an escape from the world and they get hooked on the release of adrenaline it gives.
Spending two hours on a game station is equivalent to taking a line of cocaine in the high it produces. It is the fastest growing addiction in the country and this is affecting young people mentally, as well as leading to physical problems such as obesity. It gives parents peace and quiet, but it becomes a concern when it is all the child wants to do. I saw one 14-year-old Preston boy who played on games for 24 hours non stop and had not eaten and was showing signs of dehydration. When his parents tried to take his console away, he became aggressive and threatened to jump out of a window. We have also dealt with children who have been skipping school and others who have been stealing from their parents to buy games. Computer game addiction can also spiral into violence as after playing violent games, they may turn their fantasy games into reality. But it is not just children who are suffering - a growing number of adults are addicted to the Internet and to sites like Facebook. I am working with one family where a 74-year-old grandmother is addicted to online poker, her daughter is addicted to eBay and has bought 270 pairs of shoes and her grand-daughter is addicted to Facebook. The poisoned chalice is being handed down through the generations".

Premiership footballers have also said to come under the apparent evil spell.

"Many footballers are playing on hand-held consoles and computer games before a game and this is resulting in a natural high which is causing a chemical imbalance which is leading to them not performing their best on the pitch. I am the psychotherapist for Fleetwood Town and they ban their players from using any form of console for at least 24 hours before a game.". Interesting timing with the FIFA World Cup (and associated video games coming up).

The UK Interactive Entertainment Association politely declined to comment on the matter re gaming addiction and whether they believed it was an issue they needed to tackle.

Media Man and G11 have also recently warned readers that iphones and "smart phones" can be more dangerous that gambling! A Media Man spokesperson said, "Gambling can be a problem for some people, but people can have all sorts of problems, gambling being just one of 100s or 1000s of potential problems to a person. When gaming or gambling we recommend you now what the data charges, download limits and the like are, so you don't go over quote. That, and also don't go over budget either. Know your limits, in both categories, know the odds, and have fun".

Gamers in the meantime look forward to learning more of the upcoming e3 Gaming Expo in Los Angeles come 15th to 17 June. Don't just play the game, be the game! (but know your limits). As Alex Jones says, "InfoWars, because there is a war on for your mind!"

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Media Man International also publish Global Gaming Directory

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PartyGaming VS Virgin Games, AWOMO and Virgin Gaming; Media Man report coming soon

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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Crown Casino VS Star City Friendly War; No Hostile Takeover, by Greg Tingle - 27th May 2010

The casino and overall gaming industry in the Asia Pacific - Australian regional remains as competitive as ever, with Crown Casino, Star City and Jupiters Hotel and Casino all enjoying expensive upgrades, some into the multi million range. To top it off, another proposed development, Jewel Casino, is earmarked for regional Victoria. This update comes in the week that the Australian Productivity Commission released its long awaited report into gaming and gambling. Media Man and Gambling911 take you to the battle zone, narrowing avoiding a dash of friendly fire...

Media and gaming buzz.... mergers, takeovers, acquisitions. How much is just talk and much is real? Speculation is a plenty.

Tabcorp and arguable its main prize, Star City in Sydney, has been the talk of takeovers for about a decade. In fact the late, great, Kerry Packer, Australia's first (legal) casino king, is understood to have stopped a young James (Packer) scooping it up in the early 2000s ... think circa 2003.

Insiders still see a Crown (other other co) takeover on the cards, but its unlikely to happen for a few more years.

Tabcorp is understood to send a release to the Australian Securities Exchange (former Australian Stock Exchange) noting rumours for a 7% jump in its shares.

Texas Pacific Group is touted as being a prime funding partner in any deal, due in part to its gaming - gambling sector smarts and know how thank to its ownership of the Harrah's Entertainment casino "super whale".

There are however too many complications for a deal to occur overnight, this week, or even this year, unless a miracle happens (which Packer is capable based upon recent stunning performances).

The group is starting a $350 million, give or take another 100 or 200 mil, redevelopment of Star. ROI, "earnings uplift" and other bean counter elements won't be clear for a few years, say the experts.

Also, keep in mind the X factor - Tabcorp's Victorian wagering licence, due to expire in 2012.

Packer's Crown aka 'World Of Entertainment' has its hands full between renovations, some tied to GenerationOne job development, and Melco Crown - City Of Dreams business, fighting it out for its share of "dolphins" and "whales" aka High Rollers. Unfortunately, just a normal catch of tuna, plankton and algae are not going to pay the bills. The business model factors in a certain number of "whales" and "super whales", and Team Packer is keen to see theme not drift off course to other potential competitors in the Philippines, downtown Mandalay Bay.

Melbourne and Sin City Sydney chit chat is suggestion that certain financial analysts advise Crown has put on ice its corporate development team, a move that "proves" that major acquisitions are not on the cards for multiple years.

Tabcorp comes at a heavy price, and a ocean liner full of debt. Think debt funding running into $1 or $2 billion, as a round figure estimate. Yep, these are big boys toys, with debt to boot. Insiders question if the debt could be handled, and worked into a deal, in the current financial market (which is close to terminal... stuffed, despite Prime Minster Kevin Rudd and Treasure Wayne Swan defending Australia's financial position).

Red tape, paperwork and legal eagles would have a field day should a pro active deal get on the way, and that's before any more regulatory changes take place.

Industry analyst's advise consent would need to be required from five state governments and about a bakers dozen of regulators.

As they say, never say never, but don't hold your breath.

To wrap up on a positive note, both Crown and Tabcorp are "swimming, not drowning", as is Not the case for much of the world's gaming and casino industry, with Las Vegas and Atlantic City suffering much of of the fallout.

Crown and Star are also adapting to the new media - internet landscape, and are plugging into the exciting and headline grabbing mainstream entertainment industry, to which will help lure in the masses who can afford to pay for quality entertainment, be it KISS, Kylie, Elton John, WWE, UFC, Dita Von Teese or other.

Australia may be known for 'Underbelly', but Crown and TAB are no mugs nor small time crooks. Smart operators they are, and they can accord to play the game and launch heavy fire when the time is right. You can bet that Gambling911 and Media Man will be there when heavy ammunition in unleashed. How friendly things remain is speculation, but punters, always remember, "A Friend In Need Is A Pest"... just kidding, "A Friend Indeed" or in debt!

Gambling911 and Media Man remind readers to bet with your head, not over it, and have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited and Virgin and is a pro active member of Virgin Unite

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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Aussie Mildura Casino Jewel Conflict Of Interest Disclaimer, by Greg Tingle - 26th May 2010

Australian casinos remain hot political fodder on both a state, national and international front. So hot is the current climate (despite buckets of rain on the east coast of Australia), local council meetings regarding casino proposals become international news. 'Casino Jack' would be proud... we think. Media Man and Gambling911 go undercover, so to speak, exploring the ever interesting relationships between local, state and federal government and the casino and gaming sector...

In the world of news media, politics, sports and gaming, Gambling911 and Media Man are of the general belief that disclaimers are a very good thing. The ethical and legal cases for such are almost bullet proof.

We get off the beaten track via planes, trains and automobiles, and "meet the locals" in regional "Jewel" of a country town, Mildura, rapidly cementing itself on the national and international tourism and casino map.

The region's proposed casino - resort will be down one advocate tomorrow when the council decides if the gaming - tourism proposal fits its Riverfront blueprint.

Cr Nick Cavallo yesterday advised he was unable to vote at tomorrow’s big Mildura Rural City Council meeting due to a good old fashioned conflict of interest. Almost sounds like some PR that would come from 1 or 2 of Melbourne's media savvy AFL clubs, but wait... the devil is in the detail...

"Under conflict laws, I will not be able to be involved in council discussions or voting in relation to the Jewel Entertainment Development, as a company in which I am a director has business relationships which are seen as a conflict under the Local Government Act," he said in champion and straight shooting fashion.

"The views put to me by hundreds of people from all walks of life throughout the municipality are of overwhelming support for the Jewel Development to go ahead.".

Local, state, national and international businesses are all tipped to benefit from Jewel. It's forecast that the development could also provide a shot in the arm for Richard Branson's Virgin Blue, and any other airlines and aviation firms that wish to plug into the action.

Gambling911 and field correspondents have been following the Mildura 'Jewel' matter for a number of months and have concluded to date that there is mega support, MegaJackpots style included... overall, for the casino to be build.

A Media Man spokesperson said "There's been enormous interest in the Mildura Jewel proposed casino case. News media, tourism heads, switched on MPs and locals can see the massive return on investment and boost to the regions economy, should the proposal go ahead. There's just a small by vocal group of detractors, but bean counters, locals and those wanting to see the region bounce back can see the benefits. The casino of course will abide by laws and regulations and is very big on responsible gambling. Tourism and lifestyle will take as much importance as the gaming element, and funds will be poured back into the community. The potential is there for Team Mildura Jewel and the locals to show the world what they can do, Mildura country charm style, with just a dash of Vegas neon lights".

Gambling911 and Media Man remind readers to bet with your head, not over it, and have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited and Virgin and is a pro active member of Virgin Unite

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

PartyCasino News: Avatar type technology and innovation at PartyGaming's PartyCasino

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Australian Casino, Gaming And Sports Betting Trends, by Greg Tingle - 25th May 2010

It's a red hot week, month in fact, for the Australian and Asia Pacific gaming and igaming sector. Following the public release of the Aussie government Australian Productivity Report. Media Man and Gambling911 continue to dissect the report, and what it means to both casual and hardcore gamblers, gamers, punters et al...

Australians are as passionate as ever about having a punt.. slots, poker, online casino games, bingo, horse racing, and sports betting is enjoying massive growth, fuelled by deals with Australian and international news media broadcasters, see punting talked about and referenced considerably in cricket, NRL, AFL, and even MMA via Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Typical Australian households are investing 3% of its income on gambling.

Online and offline sports betting has picked up the slack from bricks and mortar casinos, clubs and hotels, with the majority of gamblers being well aware of the number of attacks and criminal matters having accorded at licensed premises. Those who prefer to smoke while gambling are largely staying home and betting online.

Casino and Club Poker Machines

Aussies are keeping up the tradition of trying their luck on the pokies. Over 70% of punters money allocation going to the "one armed bandits". The pokies sector, much of which is controlled by Woolworths and Mr Bruce Mathieson has grown an average 1.2% per year over the past five years. Machines bring in $109.4 billion a year!

Horse Racing

Following pokies, racing comes in with 11.5% of spending, a .5% lift in five years. Spending rose from $15.6 billion to $17.6 billion during the past five years. The sector grew 2.5%. Horse racing and a "day at the races" is a totally acceptable form of gambling and social pastime to women and their families, with fashion houses, brands and the like getting in the thick of the action.

Casinos (land based)

Casinos are down, despite James Packers' Crown Casino in Melbourne make things appear their up. Tabcorp's Star City in Sydney and Jupiters Hotel & Casino on the Gold Coast have been spending up big on renovations, PR and advertising, and further plugging into the tourism and entertainment sector, attracting the creme of the world's performing artists and sporting events. 'Aussie Millions' remains Australia's biggest poker tournament by far, Crown being its home.

Casinos are understood to have lost market share in the past five years, down from 12.3% total spend in the 2004 - 2005 window to 11.9% currently. Total spending in casinos has risen in the window from $17.5 billion up to $18.3 billion. Despite what many consider to be a long period of national and international recession, the Aussie casino sector has somehow expanded by 0.9% per annum.

Lottery (via newsagents)

Staying steady. 3.5% of gambling spend. Up .2% from 5 years ago. $5.3 billion a year is invested in Aussies each year in attempt to win 'The Big One'. The sector is up by 2.3% over the past 5 years.

Sports Betting

Increased market share of gambling spend up from 1.1% in 2004-2005 to 1.9%.

Annual spend - $2.9 billion. In 2005 it was only $1.6 billion! 12% growth on average. Online sports betting has taken off, attracting a wide and passionate audience. Australians enjoy the skill element to it, just as they do with poker and online poker. Punters test their knowledge, inside info, and try to best their mates, putting down money where their mouth is. Despite a number of sports betting scandals, punters can't get enough. 50% Packer owned Betfair is powering along, also pushing attracting affiliate programs offerings to web publishers such as Media Man via agencies like DGM. Betfair main competitor Centrebet is in the top 2 sports betting firms for Australia based on revenues and active accounts. Betfair and Centrebet are looking to expand into other gambling offerings, with Centrebet already starting to offer online slots, including Marvel Entertainment, no doubt become aware of PartyGaming's popularity with branded online slot games. TAB sub group, Luxbet, entered the market a few months ago, along with Bet365 with a mixed result. SportingBet, Betstar are in the top 10. Many NRL Footy clubs joined up with Betezy (former Media Man client), with sports club branded betting ie: TitanBet (Gold Coast Titans and SharksBet (Cronulla Sharks). Punters are generally remaining very loyal to Betfair and Centerbet. Fairfax (inc The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald) and News Limited (inc The Daily Telegraph, Herald Sun, The Advertiser, Perth Now and The Courier-Mail and The Australian) are both advertising sports betting firms and also have what are understood to be "white label" in house deals, the details of which appear to be closely guarded. Google ads are often featured on Australia's leading newspaper websites and print ads for sports betting and gaming appear in newspaper print weekly.

What's Hot For Betting

State Of Origin, UFC, World Cup Soccer

Other Growing Areas

Female Gambling - online bingo, online sports betting, celebrity betting ala reality TV, politics

Areas Expecting More Growth

Online Casinos, following PartyGaming's global success of branded slot games, incorporating the likes of Marvel Entertainment, Paramount Pictures, IGT. Virtual worlds continue to enjoy popularity, especially with the younger audience, and rumors persist that SecondLife may once again incorporate a gambling - casino element. PKR's 3D poker room appears to be driving a popularity with the 3D casino sector. Richard Branson's Virgin Games has a global push, including with both gaming and gambling, with a launch of a new Virgin Games product in the US next month. It's expected to be related to AWOMO (A World Of My Own), a project in association with Game Domain International.

Concerns

Numerous gaming and igaming companies, both national and international, are concerned with the Australia government's stance on censorship, both online and offline, as well as government attempting to crack down on independent press and freelance journalists, be it Wikileaks or other.

Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month' Winner

PartyCasino.com

The New Wave

Tech giant Google is expected to do a hard launch of Google Games in the near future, already pushing classic game 'Pac Man'. Just when they release Google gambling remains to be seen. Google already brings in substantial revenue accepting gambling and gaming ads via its AdWords etc, which are advertised in most parts of the western word. Google's YouTube portal is expected to become a massive gaming hub. Google TV was put into the public domain via news media late last week, but Media Man understands gambling was not discussed, but gaming was. 'Play For Free' or 'Play For Money' options looks to stay part of the new wave, and multi currency casino options and internet portals incorporating games - skill and games of chance is a growing trend. Sports betting is tipped go start a 3D trend and mobile gaming, on phones, SmartPhones etc is on the upswing, despite news media reports advising punters to be alert to heavy data charges associated with so called Smart Phones.

Australia remains in the world's top ten, a number of insiders saying approximately 3rd biggest gambling national on earth.

The general population finds gambling totally acceptable, with only a small but vocal group of campaigners continuing to bombard newspapers with negative stories in an attempt to facilitate "attack journalism".

Gambling is stronger than ever in the land down under, becoming almost one with the world of sports, mainstream entertainment and the general internet landscape.

Media Man and Gambling911 encourage gamblers to know the odds, bet with your head, not over it, and have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming (including sports betting) is just one of a bakers dozen of sectors they cover on a global basis. Media Man's casino news flagship brand is Casino News Media
They also publish Australian Sports Entertainment

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited and Virgin

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Australian Gambling Report Asks Federal Government Control, by Greg Tingle - 24th May 2010

The Australian Productivity report into gaming, gambling et al... you've heard about it for over a year, and now Media Man and Gambling911 are delighted to deliver some meat and potatoes information on the once secretive paper... gaming insiders, outsiders and everyone else... the news you need to know, and relax, its not all bad news...

A report tells the Aussie federal government to basically take over the regulation of gambling, which Australians spend $18 billion a year on, states collecting $4.69bn in tax revenue annually, and that's only the figures they know about.

Education powerhouse - think tanks, Deakin University and the Australia Institute, urge the Rudd government to put a 2 per cent tax on all gambling revenue. Furthermore, using some of the $378 million to give state governments that reduce gambling levels "incentive payments" (not a bribe of sorts?!) to reduce their "reliance" on pokies tax.

The report argues that the land down under Australia should establish a national gambling regulator that would set poker machine quotas and bet limits. They also call for the establishment of a national (not-for-profit) lottery to replace revenue states would lose. North and South Carolina has the Education Lottery, which gambling and wrestling fans will be aware of 'The Nature Boy' Ric Flair fronting.

The Aussie reports goes as far to state the commonwealth should establish a national player tracking system to detect "abnormal or risky playing patterns".

Associate Professor Hancock said problem gambling was a serious health risk. "This whole approach . . . needs to be a central plank in the Rudd government's health plan," she stressed.

Media Man and Gambling911 acknowledge the existence of "problem gamblers", but in society many people have problems, be it gambling, employment, relationships, health, time management and all sorts of matter, so it does point an accusing finger at the gaming and gambling sector. Some types of personalities are more likely to encounter problems with gambling, and that's just part of the human make up.

Some serious and concerning information... In the state of Victoria, one in five people arriving at The Alfred Hospital's emergency unit after suicide attempts were gamblers in crisis, Professor Hancock said.

Some Australian politicians are buying right into the argument. Well known anti-pokies campaigner and independent senator Nick Xenophon advised he was inspired to run for federal politics because Kevin Rudd said he would act against gambling.

"Can I suggest to the Prime Minister that now the emissions trading scheme is off the agenda, there's a lot more time in the Senate to consider legislation," Senator Xenophon said.

"State governments are the No 1 jackpot junkies. They can't be trusted when it comes to gambling regulation. And despite his promise to deal with gambling, the Prime Minister had done nothing to reduce rates".

Labor clubs operating "one armed bandits" provide the Labor Party with $1m plus in campaign donations per annum.

Mr Rudd pledged to do something about the rise of poker machines across the country.

"I hate poker machines and I know something of their impact on families," he said.

The Productivity Commission draft report on gambling late last year recommended that pokie bets be restricted to $1 a play, and cash withdrawal limits should be placed on adjacent ATMs.

The report states Australians lost $18bn a year on gambling, and about 15% of Aussies gambled regularly (excluding Lotto), scratchies and the like.

Its estimated 10% of regular gamblers are "problem gamblers".

The new report says the commonwealth should add to the "Grants Commission formula incentives" for state governments to reduce their reliance on gambling taxes or reduce their commonwealth grants if they did not do so.

At present much discussion in the gaming and igaming sector revolves around if full regulation of the sector, both globally and in the Asia Pacific region is the way forward, with the vast majority saying Yes.

Media Man and Gambling911 encourage gamblers to know the odds, bet with your head, not over it, and have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a bakers dozen of sectors they cover.

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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Virgin Casino Launches New Fire Hawk Slot

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - 05/20/10 - Virgin Casino, part of the leading online gaming company - Virgin Games, has today announced the launch of Fire Hawk, developed by NextGen Gaming. Fire Hawk is a 5-reel, 20-payline slot game with a free games feature and a bonus feature to multiply winnings.

Players are treated to a Native American themed game featuring great graphics and the potential for fantastic wins. The free games feature is triggered when three or more scattered Fire Hawk appear anywhere. Players can receive either 10 free spins with quadrupled winnings; 15 free spins with tripled winnings; or 20 free spins with doubled winnings.

Warren Eloff, Product Manager at Virgin Casino, commented:

"This Native American themed slot is a visually stunning with Indian Chiefs, Dreamcatchers and Pipes, but what will really keep players coming back for more is the fantastic free games feature. I can see Fire Hawk becoming a firm favourite with our customers."

Fire Hawk is as easy to play as it is exciting. After just a few spins of this game, players will have figured out everything they need to know to play it easily.

Founded in 2004, Virgin Casino has over 1,000,000 players and 198 casino games on its site. Through the introduction of a custom built Virgin Games platform in 2008, Virgin Casino seeks to provide its players with the widest possible choice of casino games. Fire Hawk adds to a growing selection of games that can be found at Virgin Casino from games producers including WagerWorks, Cryptologic, Freemantle, Endemol, Electracade, NextGen Gaming and Ash Gaming.

To play Fire Hawk visit www.virgincasino.com

Notes to editors:

About Virgin Games:

Virgin Games launched in June 2004 and has quickly established itself as one of the leading gaming websites in the UK. Virgin Games comprises three distinct offerings:

- Virgin Casino, offers content from a range of games suppliers including WagerWorks, Cryptologic, Freemantle and Ash Gaming, bringing consumers classic casino games like blackjack and roulette, as well as great feature slots like Monopoly, Rubik's, X-Factor and the highly popular MegaJackpots progressive games, with a jackpot value of over GBP 1,500,000

- Virgin Poker, part of the Boss Media network, offers a huge array of games and content for beginners through to experienced pros - as well as the most generous loyalty scheme in the industry

- Virgin Bingo, part of the Virtue Fusion network, offers cash prizes worth thousands of pounds in the progressive jackpots, as well as Virgin prize bingo and a range of unique Virgin Games bingo games

*Sorry, no U.S or Australian players. See World Casino Directory

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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Australian Burswood Casino Crime News Report, by Greg Tingle - 22nd May 2010

Loyal readers, Americans, Australians, Canadians, Asians... the world over... it didn't take long for Burswood Casino aka Burswood Entertainment Complex, to make the news again (for the wrong reasons). It's not the casinos fault again, a mug punter tried to sell a gun there. Didn't the ratbag every hear of security? Media Man and Gambling911 attack the situation with baton and plastic handcuffs in hand...

A 22-year-old punter was arrested this morning after he "allegedly" attempted to sell a gun on the gaming floor no less, at James Packer owned Burswood Casino. Burswood is in the Crown Limited portfolio.

Burswood security officers aka "bouncers" called police to the casino premises around 3.30am. It's those wee hours of the morning when a lot of serious crime happens in society, under the darkness of night. Crims are also known to drink a bit before committing crimes in an attempt to drum up a bit of "Dutch Courage".

Events Following:

Police searched the punters quarters at Burswood Hotel, where they are understood to have located a handgun and a quantity of ecstasy (illegal and popular drug) tablets.

The mug has been charged with possession of a firearm and possessing a prohibited drug with intent to sell or supply.

Cobber, you've been watching too many episodes of 'Underbelly' and 'Gangs Of Oz'.

The apparent smallish time criminal has been refused bail and is expected to appear in court today or Monday.

No shots were fired, but as Gambling911 and Media Man readers would know too well, things can change in a hurry when it comes to criminal behaviour at casinos, hotels and resorts. This year there's been dozens of arrests and gun shots at Australian, European and American land based casinos and clubs.

We commend the Burswood casino staff and management, and WA Police for taking care of this fella before things further escalated.

Not sure about visiting your local casino or club? Check out the casino and online casino profiles at Gambling911 and Media Man International. Last week a comprehensive report on Australian - Asia Pacific casinos was filed. Media Man online games of the month: Cleopatra and Sinatra, neck and neck. MM 'Online Casino Of The Month' winner:
PartyCasino.com

Media Man Land Based Casino Of The Month winner: Crown Casino, Melbourne Australia (extra points to Crown and James Packer for leading the charge with GenerationOne), helping employ thousands of Indigenous Australians, as the continue to get trained up. Mr Packer also gets the "sympathy vote" for copping an "ear bashing" at the hands of rock legend and fellow humanitarian, Bob Geldof, who alluded to numerous "rich bastards" at a recent GenerationOne conference in Western Australia.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a dozen industry sectors they cover.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited (and others)

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Friday, May 21, 2010

PartyCasino $500 Sign Up Bonus

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3D For Australian Sports, TV Series, Web And Casinos, by Greg Tingle - 21st May 2010

3D technology is on fire, a bushfire on steroids in fact, down under in Australia. Media Man, Gambling911 and readers don the 3D glasses and look and see what's cooking in Aussie sports, movies, casinos, poker and more...

It's all about entertainment, eyeballs, and the entertainment dollar. 'Entertainment' is something that PartyGaming, Virgin Games (and Media Man and Gambling911) are big on. What's the point in advanced technology if its not fun and entertaining to the punter or consumer at large? Content producers and platforms have largely also realised that a product or service for gamblers, gamers or combo, needs to be compelling, or they won't come back and will find another game, website, live event or whatever. Have you checked out the Gambling911 forum or Media Man YouTube lately?

With that in mind check out the huge amount of entertainment on now, and coming up for gamers, gamblers, sports punters and even tech heads and geeks...

FIFA World Cup in South Africa

SBS has announced it will form a three-way partnership with Sony and Harvey Norman to bring Australian soccer nuts the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa in 3D.

The partnership means up to 15 matches throughout the World Cup tournament will be available on a dedicated 3D channel in addition to SBS’s coverage – including Australia’s opening match against Germany.

FIFA will provide a 3D broadcast feed of matches throughout the tournament, which will then be broadcast live by SBS and then repeated on a "loop" until the next 3D match is made available.

"The Australian Communications and Media Authority has been working with us on a spectrum solution and we will be using our digital transmission network for the broadcast," said SBS’s chief operating officer Richard Finlayson.


Australian Socceroos Catch 3D Fever

The Socceroos 2010 World Cup team anthem will feature what Sony music claims as the first 3D music video in Australia. The video clip for the Rogue Traders new single, Hearts Beat as One, will be shot in 3D as the official Qantas Socceroos team anthem for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

"The potential of movies, sports and gaming in 3D is already evident and as the hype around 3D continues to build, Sony remains at the forefront of delivering unique experiences from the lens to the lounge room," said Carl Rose, Managing Director, Sony Australia and New Zealand.

3D technology in Australia continues to generate unprecedented hype in Australia with SBS to trial 3D TV broadcasts for the duration of the 2010 World Cup, Channel 9 screening the State of Origin in 3D, and Foxtel strongly hinted its intention to start broadcasting in 3D later this year.

Major television manufacturers including Sony have also been pushing 3D technology hard after the widespread theatrical success of Avatar in 3D.

Sony expects the 3D music video to premiere in early June.


Google TV To Including Gaming And Lots More

Internet king Google is out to expand its kingdom to the living room with an new service that lets punters mesh television viewing with surfing the web.

Google TV, developed in partnership with technology big shots Sony, Intel and Logitech and launched in the US overnight, fuses the freedom of the internet with television programming.

Google executives vowed their TV platform would succeed where offerings such as Apple TV have foundered and hopefully capture some of the $US70 billion ($85 billion) American TV advertising market.

Google TV product manager Salahuddin Choudhary said in a blog post that Google TV will allow TV viewers to get "all the (TV) channels and shows you normally watch and all of the websites you browse all day.

"You can access all of your favorite websites and easily move between television and the Web," Choudhary said.

"This opens up your TV from a few hundred channels to millions of channels of entertainment across TV and the Web," he said.

"With the entire Internet in your living room, your TV becomes more than a TV - it can be a photo slideshow viewer, a gaming console, a music player and much more," he added.

Google is not the first technology company to attempt to unite the TV set and the Internet and a number of electronics manufacturers are already offering Web-enabled televisions or digital set-top boxes.

Choudhary said the Internet-enabled televisions, Blu-ray players and companion boxes from Sony and Logitech, which are powered by Intel Atom computer chips, would be available soon in the U.S via Best Buy stores. No dates for Australia yet.

A wireless computer keyboard and box were used during the on-stage demonstration here of Google TV, which uses traditional search to find TV channels or websites.

Sony chief executive Howard Stringer described it as "a very big deal."

"I can't stress that enough," Stringer said on stage. "When you put all this, as we've done for the fall, into the world's first Internet television, the opportunities are, in a sense, just mind boggling."

Google did not announce pricing for the TV sets or the set-top boxes.

Other Developments

PartyGaming

Not to be outdone, PartyGaming's PartyCasino has released the Circus Slot, more a 2D experience, but is understood to be the world's first interactive role playing online slot game. Party insiders say to expect "Avatar" type technologies with the Sly Stallone name coming up in Chinese whispers. Rocky or The Expendables? Who knows, but its going to be even bigger and better than Evolution Gaming 'Live Dealer' we hear. 'Rambo' is already available at Party, which is a good sign of substance to the buzz.

PartyCasino.com

Virgin

Richard Branson's Virgin Games is expanding globally, with virtual world platform, AWOMO (A World Of My Own) to be a major focus. Think Tomb Raider: Underworld ... in 2D, maybe 3D at some stage. Whatever the case, its going to be out of this world, fast and value for money. How long till Aussies and Americans can get the downloads remains to be seen, but Branson is to hard launch the product at the E3 Expo in Los Angeles next month.

VirginCasino.com


PKR Poker, Casino And Now Sports Betting

Yep, world famous 3D poker rooms, PKR, now not only offers poker, but also casino games and sports betting. The virtual reality live poker remains their main drawcard, however they smartly realised that poker players generally also like a bit of casino games and sports punting on the side

PKR.com


SEGA

Understood to have done a considerable deal with Playtech. Casino and poker is on the menu Sega style. Media Man is not impressed yet...with the technology, however, that's not to say that we won't be in coming weeks and months. Next...


FOXTEL - Microsoft Xbox LIVE deal (not gambling, but speculation)


FOXTEL has signed a deal with Microsoft to deliver 30 channels of pay TV over the internet.

FOXTEL and Microsoft today announced a new partnership offering Australians a brand new way of receiving FOXTEL – over the internet and direct to television sets through Xbox 360’s online service Xbox LIVE.

FOXTEL by Xbox LIVE will allow Xbox 360 owners in Australia to access FOXTEL channels including FOX Sports, Discovery, Nickelodeon, Disney, MTV, and other leading channels via their Xbox 360 entertainment console.

FOXTEL by Xbox LIVE will also provide a wide range of Video-on-Demand (VoD) services, including television series and movies. When the ground-breaking service launches later this year it will enable Australians, for the first time, to access FOXTEL without the need for a FOXTEL set-top-box.

FOXTEL by Xbox LIVE will be accessible in FOXTEL areas across Australia to all homes with a broadband internet connection. All you need is an Xbox 360, an Xbox Gold subscription and a FOXTEL by Xbox LIVE subscription.

The agreement brings together two of Australia’s most recognised and respected brands combining each company’s profound entertainment and consumer offerings.FOXTEL by Xbox LIVE provides Australians a new way of enjoying FOXTEL, and cements Xbox 360 as one of this country’s leading innovative social entertainment platforms. Xbox LIVE connects more than 23 million people across 26 countries to an ever-expanding world of games, movies, TV, music, sport and social entertainment.

FOXTEL Chief Executive and Managing Director, Kim Williams AM said, “This is a very exciting new frontier. FOXTEL by Xbox LIVE will provide our 1.6 million subscribing households, as well as new customers, a transformative way of receiving and enjoying FOXTEL over the internet. We will offer FOXTEL by Xbox LIVE with various packages and prices and under flexible agreements. It is an exciting new way of exploring FOXTEL’s universe of content for a new generation of customers.”

SecondLife

Rumors persist that as different countries get their communications laws up to speed that SecondLife.com may once again offer pro active virtual casinos as part of their offering. The parent of SecondLife is Linden Research, and Linden Labs is understood to be where the "cool kids" hang out. The virtual currency is the Linden dollar L$


Network Nine Underbelly And NRL State Of Origin In 3D

Nine advise they will carry Rugby League's 'State of Origin' clash in 3D on 26th May. It's forecast to cost the network $10 million to broadcast, and Nine have flown over technology experts from the United States to make it happen.

Underbelly continues to drive forward the crime genre, and not just on TV. Wires are reporting that at least 3 Australian crime shows are due to be released over the next 12 months, quite likely soon, such is the current appetite of Australian audiences.

The next series of Underbelly, featuring the Gold Coast - up Surfers Paradise way, will be shot, pardon the pun, in 3D. The rumour mill says some scenes and footage is already "in the can" (also Aussie for in jail)!


Free Gaming VS Paid Gaming - Trends Summary

The US currently leads the world in online business revenues, but general belief is that the EU and other territories will continue to grow gaming revenue.

"These free options are definitely broadening the appeal of video games among older and female demographics, and a lot of these consumers don't actually consider themselves gamers at all," Michael Cai, vice president of video game research at Interpret.

"Without casual gaming portals like Pogo, Real Networks, and Big Fish Games, many older female gamers would have never paid for gaming content."

Interpret discovered that 21 per cent of the US population, or over 46.1 million Americans, play social network games. Over 11 million Americans only play social network games. The median age for social network gamers is 38.8, versus 30.9, which is the median age of console gamers.

Cai found that 12 per cent of these social network gamers plan on buying a Wii, which would be their first game console.

More console game makers are offering consumers free play, including downloadable game demos through Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade and Sony's PlayStation Network Store.

"Handing over free content to gamers can be tremendously beneficial to developers and publishers, even if it comes in the form of a short playable demo of a game that's not spectacular," said Patrick Shaw, features editor, GamePro Magazine.

Gaming on Facebook is becoming more popular, and players like to check out games on YouTube before signing up for accounts at game portals and online casinos. PartyGaming PartyCasino 'Pay For Free' (before 'Play For Money') option continues to be mega popular. Media Man has quizzed the powers that be on this matter, and has some data to prove this is the case. YouTube remains the king of internet streaming for the masses, and owned by Google, it can afford for it to be a loss leader if need be.


Censorship In Australia - Online, Offline and Everywhere

Richard Branson's Virgin and Google's 'Google Guys' remain in the long list of new media entrepreneurs seeking clarity on Australia's censorship laws, both current and upcoming. The current guidelines are an absolute mess and out of line with laws in other development countries such as the United States, Canada and United Kingdom.

The Aussie government initiative to filter the internet down under is currently due to be actioned in 1 to 3 months, depending upon what report and source you choose to believe. Govt legal eagles and policy makers are still deciding what to do as far as policy relating to video game ratings that are sold off the shelf, and technologies such as AWOMO (A World Of My Own) are likely to also be effected from Australian censorship laws (even if some quarters of the Australian government doesn't want to call it "censorship", we know better!

Media Man International TV Not (YouTube)

Check out games, poker, even the 'Sin City' expo on Media Man YouTube! Go on, we know you want to

http://www.youtube.com/mediamanint


So, gamers, gamblers, square eyes, couch potatoes, or whatever is your poison.

There's a universe of 2D, 3D and interactive entertainment coming up.

We know your already in information overload, so just wait until you check out the above mentioned new big boys toys. Know the odds, bet with your head, not over it, and have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a dozen industry sectors they cover.

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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Richard Branson Expanding Virgin Gaming And iGaming Empire, by Greg Tingle - 20th May 2010

Gaming, gaming and iGaming fans, have we got some news hot of the press for you. Our bat phone has been running hot hot hot!

For the past few months Media Man and Gambling911 have been keeping you updated on all sorts of exciting developments at Richard Branson's Virgin Group, namely Virgin Games, Virgin Casino, Virgin Poker, Virgin Bingo, and offshoot, AWOMO (A World Of My Own), with a DGI (Game Domain International) tie in. Last week Branson's Virgin Racing also sponsored Full Tilt Poker.

Richard Branson will unleash the Virgin return to the video gaming sector at the E3 event in Los Angeles, USA, in June.

We understand that a hard launch is being orchestrated, with Sir Branson, the one and only, in attendance. Can't wait to see what the man and his army wear and what sorts of stunts they have up their sleeve, but Branson isn't usually one to disappoint.

Virgin was one of the most successful brands to have ever competed in the video gaming industry, albeit over a decade ago, but 2010 is looking to be a record breaking year for the brands re birth, pardon the pun

RB was one of the first pioneers - visionaries to see the massive potential of computer software as a global Virgin entertainment business, establishing Virgin Games in downtown London circa 1984. He later moved the core of the operation to Guernsey which has lower overheads and is understood to be more igaming industry friendly!

A Bit Of History

The company acquired Mastertronic and rolled Sega’s Master System across the European region.

Sega Europe continued to power along, then Virgin Interactive Entertainment.

In 1994 it lost its Virginity, being acquired by Blockbuster for a cool $250 million, then was purchased by media powerhouse Viacom (which owns about half the media world).

Virgin Interactive Entertainment reached its financial global revenue peak in 1997, bringing home the bacon to the tune of $210 million.

Circa 94 - 98 it shared market dominance with EA (Electronic Arts).

Virgin saw partners and affiliates come on board including such greats Westwood, Bethesda, Capcom, LucasArts and Disney.

Since 2004 Virgin Games has been V's staple gaming brand, other gaming ventures basically on ice... until now!

The new gaming "start up" (of sorts), expected to go public at E3 will see Virgin pro actively exploring partnerships with publishers, content owners, and you get the idea. The timing looks to be right with 'Avatar' type technologies all the rage, movies being adapted to games in record time, and the availability of broadband internet at reasonable prices.

Internet, console formats and more will see the big V feature red hot games, both classics and newbies. Think Space Invaders to Cleo to Avatar, and their cousins.

Gamers are calling for interactive slot games, tournaments, TV and movie brands, and more casino and poker type experiences, in addition to what they already enjoy.

Insiders expect some sort of firm announcement from Virgin at the expo or soon after re return to the mainstream games market.

Punters, fire up the consoles...Xbox Live, PlayStation Network, multi-player PC gaming and more is just around the corner from the man who brought you Virgin Records, V Festival and Virgin Galactic... be excited... we sure as hell are.

At the moment Americans and Australians are not able to play casino, poker or bingo games at Virgin, however with the expansion of Virgin Games, and the push to clear up any grey areas in regions such as the U.S and down under in Australia, the whole suite of Virgin Games may go global sooner rather than later.

Competitors of sorts, PartyGaming - including PartyCasino and poker brands, Betfair and Centrebet, are all said to be watching this space closely. Australia's Fairfax Media, publisher of The Sydney Morning Herald and News Limited, publisher of The Daily Telegraph and The Australian, are also following for both potential deal opportunities and in a journalistic (journalism) capacity. Foxtel has only just got wind of the news, putting out its own gaming related press release less than 24 hours before this publication.

Yep, gamers and igamers... Tomb Raider, Rome Total War, Cleopatra, Flatout, WarHammer Mark Of Chaos, Pain Killer: Black Edition, maybe even Dan Dare and who knows what surprises will be jumping out of your computer once Team Branson turns on the turbo and blasts off Virgin Galactic style. TNA Wrestling, Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Bill Goldberg, UFC, NASCAR, F1 and Bull Run are all understood to also want to talk turkey and potential deals with Branson and 'V'.

Marvel Entertainment, DC Comics, Dark Horse Comics, Playtech, IGT, World Poker Tour, WSOP, SKY, Harrah's Entertainment, Trump Casinos, Infinity Ward, Sony and Sega remain tight lipped on the Virgin developments.

Virgin Games, AWOMO (A World Of My Own), bring in on... faster than you can say Virgin Racing Inks Deal With Full Tilt Poker! Read about the life and times of Branson and his world of planes, trains and automobiles (and spaceships) on the Media Man International website portal. Hours of entertainment for free.

Virgin remains one of dozens of corporate tech and communications giants seeking clarity on Australian censorship laws, both online and offline.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a dozen of industry sectors they cover

*The writer is has conducted business with a number of arms of the Virgin Group and is a pro active member of Virgin Unite.

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Australian Aboriginals And Casinos Generate Bob Geldof Heat, by Greg Tingle - 20th May 2010

Gaming and community entrepreneurs, what do Aussie indigenous peoples, casinos and pop icon Bob Geldof share in common? No, its not a game of what's red, white and black all over... ok, bad joke... the answer is "a nun in a blender". Getting serious, wonderful Australian initiative GenerationOne, has once again brought together an eclectic mix of society, business, rock stars, humanitarians... the whole box and dice. Media Man, passionate community campaigner and media entrepreneur, and Gambling911, new media powerhouse, hit the Aussie Outback in search of answers...

Live Aid humanitarian and rock star "rat" tells us Australia has "exiled" indigenous Australians from the nation.

Australian and Asia Pacific casino and lifestyle king, James Packer of Crown, copped an earful, as did others... more on that later, but here's an overview... the calm before the storm friends...

"They were forced to be exiled from themselves and that must stop," he preached.

"You need to pull them back into themselves because you’ve acknowledged them as being. The spiritual core of yourselves will only be filled when this is done.".

Mr Boobtown Rat was speaking to a breakfast for Perth, WA mining baron Andrew "Twiggy" Forrest’s nation-touring GenerationOne movement. "Twiggy" and the team aims to halt indigenous disparity within this generation. Geldof likened indigenous affairs in Australia to situations he’d witnessed in 3rd-world Africa, and you get the idea.

"I said on the radio back in 1984 that to die of want in a world of surplus is not only intellectually absurd, it is morally repulsive. Well let’s add economically illiterate to that.

It already started to sound that he was talking to the casino, development and mining industry... he has a captive audience, that much is for certain, and news media caught every word!

"You’ve removed from your society of 'having a go' 500,000 of your own. That is absurd. It’s economically stupid.

"Just like those 44 million African children (given access to education from the Live Aid campaign) will be a massive driving force in the world economy, so your own Aboriginal people require to be allowed in. The access point is education."

Geldof urged the "rich bastards" (Mr Packer et al) in attendance at the breaky to contribute wholeheartedly and dig deep re Mr Forrest’s fight to end indigenous disparity. It's a shame 'Our Richard' (Branson), Steve Wynn (still winning big), and billionaire 'Google Guys' weren't in attendance.

Taking shots at a guest representative of Mr Frank Lowy’s Westfield empire and GenerationOne benefactor and key supporter, casino king James Packer, Geldof said "You can build a small shop and then you can build very, very big shop. You can build a casino and then you can build five casinos, you’re still building fu...king casinos."

But Geldof was more than happy to take a pot shot at himself, thereby covering his ass for later heat...

"Or you could be singularly responsible for two of the worst pop records ever made (We Are the World and Do They Know It’s Christmas?).

"You can do all that, but it’s just not enough. It’s all sort of empty. It doesn’t mean very much. Of course, what it is is being able to take what you’re doing, which is less than some and more than others, and extend it out. Well that’s what Twiggy (Andrew Forrest) is doing."

8 minutes of Geldoff speak, poetic tongue, relating to all, Dreamtime included, it was appropriate that Geldof (Mr Rat) signed off with a quote from German writer Johann von Goethe "Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.".

Media Man and Gambling911 wish the loyal readership magic of Enchanted Unicorn proportions and genius, be it poker, casino classics, sports betting, or friends and relationships. Geldof is not interested to have a 'Boomtown Rats' themed slot machine, despite fellow rocker, Aussie Angry Anderson doing well with his 'Rose Tattoo' casino club themes. Packer has not publicity commented on a Kerry Packer or 'Underbelly' casino slot game to date, which means its still a possibility. Rock on my brothers, white, black or other! We are one.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. Gaming is just one of a dozen industry sectors they cover

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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Underbelly Star Gambles On De Niro Flick, by Greg Tingle - 20th May 2010

Australian crime TV and movies continue to wow the Hollywood movers n shakers, most recently icon Robert Di Niro (Casino, Goodfellas et al). Yeah, we know we went with a headliner grabber and a bit of hype, but it reads better than 'Robert Di Niro Gambles On Up And Coming Aussie'! Media Man and Gambling911 take their eye in the sky to see what's cooking 'Underbelly' - Hollywood style...

He plays the toughest guy in Kings Cross.

But the star of Underbelly: The Golden Mile, Firass Dirani, says he's going to have to 'man up' for his next role opposite veteran US actor Robert De Niro, known of course as the Living Legend of movies, and who could forget his portrayal of Sam 'Ace' Rothstein (Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal) in Martin Scorsese classic 'Casino'.

Let's now cross to Dirani, Cleo Bachelor Of The Year...

"I'm going to have to take my middleweight gloves off and put my heavyweight gloves on," Dirani half jokes.

"I'm going to have to man up."

"It's been a childhood dream. I've imitated this guy since I was five, since I could speak - doing the whole crumpled-up face thing.

"I'm just pinching myself. Honestly, I'm just gobsmacked by the whole thing."

Dirani will also star alongside Hollywooders Jason Statham and Clive Owen in The Killer Elite, a flick about ex-SAS soldiers who are being hunted down by assassins.

Dirani, known for playing 'Sin City' Sydney colourful (aren't we all) identity John Ibrahim in the third series of the ratings hit Underbelly, was seated on the head table at a Network Nine function and pow wow celebrating the network's drama programs in Sydney this past Wednesday.

The man of the moment, the mans threat, the woman's regret, says he remains stunned to be included in the star line up at the network.

"It's weird isn't it? (I'm at) the creme de la creme table. Sitting with David Gyngell and Lisa McCune - the faces of Channel Nine," he says.

"I don't mind that - (being) the rookie of the year. I'm loving it."

Gambling911 and Media Man wish Dirani well and look forward to seeing him rip up Hollywood, Las Vegas, Atlantic City and beyond.

Loyal readers will be aware that punters can now place bets on the success of upcoming films with a number of betting agencies and the like, so be sure to give a good look over the Gambling911 website for more on those great opportunities to make a killing.

Ace, take good care of our 'boy', soon to perhaps become 'The Man' in Hollywood, and
Dirani, don't forget your Aussie mates and especially John Ibrahim and the boyz of 'The Golden Mile' King Cross. Dirani in line for an Oscar within 12 months? Yep, you wouldn't be dead for quids. Good hunting, and long live the AussieWood - Underbelly - Hollywood connection.

Go Aussie Go. Aussie Aussie Aussie Oi Oi Oi!

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company

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