Reality check on TradeSports-InTrades recent statement

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The spin doctoring goes like this:

TradeSports, the leading person to person retail trading exchange, continues to grow and innovate in the lead-up to this November&#8217-s US elections.

Reality Check: The world&#8217-s biggest retail, real-money prediction exchange is BetFair, actually.

TradeSports offers person to person trading services to thousands of registered members from all over the Globe who trade their opinions on hundreds of events such as the US November mid-term elections, the capture of Bin Laden, the Dow Jones at year end, and many sporting events.

Reality Check: TradeSports-InTrade is entirely dependend on its American clientele, which makes up for the bulk of its revenues.

We also provide prediction market data which is becoming the reporting standard on political and other future uncertainties to the world’s media, academia, investment businesses, state and political organizations.

Reality Check: Highly exaggerated, but true.

We will be launching a new “Express” trading interface in the coming weeks to further improve our service and to cement our position as the leading retail person to person trading exchange.

Reality Check: The world&#8217-s biggest retail, real-money prediction exchange is BetFair, actually. As for improving the service, besides the &#8220-Express&#8221- interface, I suggest to seek regulation from the Irish government and membership from the Independent Betting Arbitration Service. In contrast, BetFair is regulated in the U.K. and is a member of IBAS.

Recent and historical legal directives in the US and other countries have been aimed at organizations in the business of bookmaking, an activity in which TradeSports is not involved.

Reality Check: The real-money prediction exchanges are not exempted from the Internet Gambling Prohibition and Enforcement Act of 2006. Also, there&#8217-s no indication that the US Treasury and US DOJ will exclude the real-money prediction exchanges (a.k.a. betting exchanges) when they will enforce the law.

TradeSports is not a sportsbook or a bookmaker, and as an Irish Company, operating legally from Ireland, we will continue to provide our services to current and new registered members.

Reality Check: True. However, the problem will be how to make the money cross the Atlantic (from the U.S. clients to the Irish firm), now that Neteller is out of the US market.

Thanks to all our thousands of current and many new members, and those interested in our prediction market data for making TradeSports a phenomenon.

Reality Check: BetFair is a phenomenon, not TradeSports-InTrade, which a poorly managed company headed by some Irish people with no questionable ethics, who behaved like thugs badly during the NKM episode. [See David Pennock’s comment.]

8 thoughts on “Reality check on TradeSports-InTrades recent statement

  1. David Pennock said:

    While I appreciated your bluntness, and I agree that Betfair is a bigger phenomenon (though Betfair doesn’t market itself as a trading exchange), I would argue that Tradesports is certainly a phenomenon in its own right. And characterizing them as “without ethics” and “thugs” seems to go a bit far over the top.

  2. Chris Masse said:

    #1. Good point.

    #2. “though Betfair doesn’t market itself as a trading exchange”…

    What the hell are you talking about, doc???

    BetFair and TradeSports are two retail, real-money prediction exchanges (a.k.a. betting exchanges).

    2.1. As for the term “trading exchange”, it does not specifically apply to TradeSports. BetFair handled half a billion transactions in 2005.…..-20052006/

    2.2. Definition of an exchange:

    – An exchange is an organized market with transactions concentrated in a physical facility with participants entering two-sided quotations (bid and ask) on a continuous basis.

    There’s no need to say “trading exchange”. It’s a John Delaney’s lingo that is not generic.

  3. David Pennock said:

    Oh, I completely and wholehartedly agree that Betfair is a trading exchange, and that Betfair and TradeSports do exactly the same thing. I’m just saying that Betfair calls what it does betting and TradeSports calls what it does trading. The difference is semantics only: there is no difference in substance.

  4. Chris Masse said:

    #1. OK, then we’re friends again.

    #2. “I’m just saying that Betfair calls what it does betting”…

    Hummm… BetFair introduces itself as a “betting exchange” and as a bookmaker killer. As such, and now I agree with you 50%, BetFair uses the “betting” vocabulary when communicating to… British bettors… although this does not completely do the trick. Once that, BetFair is compelled to educate bettors about trading. (They have set up workshops called “BetFair Education”.)

    Once again, I see that there is anti-BetFair prejudice in America. Midas Oracle will contribute to dissipate that.

  5. Chris Hibbert said:

    I think it goes a bit further than the two of you admit. BetFair represents themselves as a betting establishment, and all the odds are presented betting style. They do explain how to convert the odds from British-style betting odds to American-style, but they don’t recognize percentile odds (prediction market-style) as a plausible alternative. If you want to visit the market and look at the predictions, you have to understand betting lingo, or be willing to convert every number. TradeSports thinks it’s a prediction market, and you can read the output of any of their markets as a prediction. The market thinks there’s an X% chance of the event taking place.

    The anti-BetFair prejudice is because BetFair isn’t targetting us, as I’ve said before. Their sports are primarily European (I take that back; they’re covering the 4 major American sports if you look carefully.) But they have no non-sports bets targetted at Americans. (Special Bets includes: Australia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and UK)

    And one more thing I’ve begun to think is an important distinction between betting and prediction markets: can you resell your bets on BetFair? It looks like BetFair holds your money until the event concludes. You can hedge your exposure by betting the other side if the odds move in your favor, but you can’t liquidate. That changes the incentives, and I think the predictiveness of the market.

    I don’t know of any other differences between the two, but I haven’t traded on BetFair (because I’m not their target audience) so I can’t tell whether there are other distinctions.

  6. Chris Hibbert said:

    Oh, I take this back: “they have no non-sports bets targetted at Americans.” They have some bets on American politics. They cover the presidential race in some detail, as well as majority control of House and Senate, but not state-by-state governors races, congressional races by district, etc. They cover British and Australian TV, but not American. Why would Americans pay attention to BetFair, except gamble on sports? TradeSports tries to capture our attention with Prediction Markets in other subjects.

  7. Chris Masse said:

    Another BetFair versus TradeSports blog post:

    BetFair’s Annual Review 2006: How did the world’s #1 real-money prediction exchange (betting exchange) fare in 2005/2006?…..-20052006/

    Internet gambling ban has passed.…

    Neteller will comply with the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006.…..t-of-2006/

    Reality check on TradeSports-InTrade’s recent statement…..statement/

    TEN CEO John Delaney finally admits that the new law will cut off TradeSports-InTrade’s revenues.…..-revenues/

    Internet Gambling Crisis – AGAIN…..sis-again/

    Using NETeller for TradeSports-InTrade, no more…..e-no-more/

    TradeSports-InTrade John Delaney won’t travel to the U.S. anymore.…..s-anymore/

    Criminal prosecutions related to online gambling will be pursued even in cases where assets and defendants are positioned outside of the United States.…..ed-states/



    NETeller money seized by U.S. prosecutors will be returned to NETeller’s (now, former) U.S. customers.…..customers/

    Will InTrade-TradeSpots lose big after the (hypothetical) passing of the 2007 Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act???…..ement-act/

    US DOJ searches financial records for traces of Internet gambling and betting.…..d-betting/

  8. TradeSports ceases its operations. | Midas Oracle .ORG said:

    […] very sad day (which I am not glad to report that I predicted would happen). TradeSports is probably the latest victim of both the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act […]

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