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The Leading Logic In Sports Handicapping

AVOID Any Ridiculous Bonus Structure:
An old adage says "if itís too good to be true, it probably is." Beware if the bonus is too good or if there is no limit on the bonus. In the past some operations with outlandish offers quickly went defunct.

WATCH for new owners or management from defunct operations:
The nature of the online gambling business allows owners to move around without detection. Customers may not know who the owners are but doing homework will help. Names float around the industry a lot so if a name sounds familiar than a quick email to a site like OSGA will help identify if the person now in charge of the new company is indeed the ex-manager of a previous scam operation.

BEWARE of bet offers/rake etc.
Every online gambling operation tries to provide some incentive to differentiate it from others and often this is with better lines, reduced rake in poker, higher payouts on slot machines etc. If the offer is way out of whack with the industry, however, then watch out.

Check out any new site BEFORE sending your hard earned dollars thousands of miles away.
  Online gambling has been available to American customers for almost 18 years now and over that time the industry has changed greatly. Some operations that were around from the beginning are still in business although most have either shut down or merged with other companies. The reasons for the closure or merger varied, although in most cases it was either that the owners never had the money to withstand bad results such as a Super Bowl where most bettors won, or because of Federal legislation, i.e. the UIGEA. Nevertheless, in 18 years there are some obvious lessons that can help prospective bettors determine which online gambling operations are safe and which should be avoided. Below are some guidelines to help bettors identify the best online gambling operations.

Keys to identifying the best sportsbooks, casinos and poker rooms

Costa Rica
5 Dimes - est. 2004
BookMaker - 1992
JustBet - 1996
WagerWeb - 1997

BetOnline - 2001
Legends - 2001

Bovada - 1997
Most online gambling sites that fail, do so within 1 to 2 years after start of the operation. Very often someone will get the idea that operating a gambling site is easy money and will either start it up themselves with limited funds or will attract investors who may be willing to toss in a few dollars but have no long term vision. These operators learn quickly that a successful operation requires a large investment and heavy reserve funds. Of course there are some exceptions like World Sports Exchange but as a general rule, longevity equals ability to pay winners.

Several jurisdictions have created a framework for gambling operations to take bets from customers around the world but some are more trustworthy than others. The UK has created a white list in which they deemed the regulations of a jurisdiction are adequate enough to warrant advertising in the UK. Among these are Malta, the Isle of Man, Gibraltar, Alderney and Antigua. Operations from those countries can be trusted. Costa Rica, Panama, Kahnawake and Curacao have also licensed operations for some time and have had limited complaints.

Customer service:
From time to time customers will have disputes with an online gambling company about results or questions relating to payouts, collusion or other issues. What separates a good online operation from a poor one is the way they handle the query or dispute. By simply sending an email or calling the customer service department one can gauge whether the company has good customer service.

Payment and withdrawal options:
The UIGEA has wreaked havoc with many online gambling operations because of limited payout options. Nevertheless a good company will still offer a range of options to fund an account like credit cards, Western Union or Moneygram, bank wires, etc. And more importantly the company will provide a wide arrange of payout options including check, bank wire, Western Union etc. The companies may charge for the payout but it should never be more than what it costs that company itself. As well, good companies will pay out in a reasonable time. The Greek Sportsbookís slogan has always been "sweat the game, not the payout," and to date there has never been a slow pay complaint against The Greek.

Common Pitfalls when picking a sportsbook
Reacting to huge sign up bonuses with silly requirements:
As mentioned above bonuses can be a good way of enticing new customers but often the requirements of the bonus are so limited that the offer is meaningless. For example a sportsbook may offer a 200% bonus on deposits up to $500 but then will require a 50x rollover requirement and/or limit the bonus to specific wager types. This may sound enticing but one must remember they must roll over the deposit and bonus 50x to get the bonus. So if someone indeed deposits $500 as stated they would need to wager $75,000 before the $1,000 bonus is released! Most reputable books will require no more than a 5x rollover and will make it applicable to all wagers.

Listening to referrals from unknown sources or sketchy "watchdog" sites:
Too often someone will sign up from a place just because "Joe the Shark from XYZ watchdog site recommended it," or because some tout says itís the best place to play. Customers should be wary. Often recommendations are the best way of identifying a great site to sign up with, but they should be from someone the customer knows and/or trusts. Many watchdog sites and touts get affiliate money whereby they are paid by the site for all signups that go through them. If this is the case there is a good chance the online gambling operation isnít the best out there and the only reason for the recommendation is the affiliate money. Beware!

The Off Shore Gaming Association (OSGA) is an independent "watchdog" agency that monitors the Offshore Sportsbook, Casino and Poker Industry in an effort to provide the public with information if they choose to wager online. The OSGA is a professional consumer-driven service and are supported by members. OSGA offers dispute mediation for the unregulated Internet gambling industry, assistance that thousands have relied since 1998.

OSGA membership is about helping players to get more out of their online gambling experience. More information on online gambling establishments. Tools to help win more money. Legal and Bad Bet Updates. Membership is about helping you get the most from every wager. Get involved today and find out why the OSGA is the most trusted source for online gaming information. Join Now!
UCABet offers the highest bonuses of any reputable book online. Others say they give 100%, but UCABet delivers it with a low rollover. They always are able to beat expectations with giant Free Play bonuses.
This book takes care of its customers. WagerWeb cares about the overall betting experience. VIP customer service managers are available and emails and calls are returned within a few hours.
5 Dimes
5Dimes has become one of the largest and most successful sportsbooks on the planet. They offer odds on just about anything, reduced juice wagering, "live" in-game betting and much, much more.
SBG Global
Wether it is a same day payout or a check, SBG Global delivers with consistency and has been for over a dozen years. SBG gets the cash in players' hands fast via every available method!
OSGA Ratings System
The ratings are compiled from our 14+ years of experience, combined with player feedback and inside reports. A site cannot pay to be listed on OSGA, as the ratings are independent and without bias.