Imagine losing the opportunity to play the fantasy sports games you’ve enjoyed for years. Troubling, right? But it IS happening.
The Small Businesses of Fantasy Sports in Washington DC at Fantasy Sports Congressional Hearing: May 11, 2016
The FSTA’s publicly stated position is that it would accept bad legislation — even legislation that would put member companies out of business — so long as that legislation “formally legalizes” fantasy sports in a given state. It’s like saying “we can’t pass up the opportunity to give water to people who have been lost in the desert for 10 days — even if the water we give is laced with cyanide. Because it’s better to give them poisoned water than no water.” In this case, the cure is worse than the disease.
An Attack on Fantasy Sports
Virginia and Indiana have already passed laws that crush small fantasy sports businesses. Both laws require fantasy sports game operators to pay a prohibitive $50,000 licensing fee. Now, New York state is considering legislation that would require licensed operators to pay a fee of $500,000.
Your state could be next. Stopping fantasy sports businesses from operating in your state with outrageous licensing fees and taxes.
This legislative trend is creating a duopoly that serves only FanDuel and DraftKings, corporate giants of the daily fantasy sports (DFS) space. And these fees and taxes will drive smaller fantasy companies - especially season-long operators, and daily startups - out of business. So we’re fighting for small fantasy sports businesses and all fantasy players.
The Solution? Fair Legislation
The SBFSTA supports fair legislation that protects ALL fantasy players and ALL fantasy businesses. We want the implementation of:
1. Sensible state operator fees
2. Percentage-based legislation with no upfront fees
3. A hardship waiver exemption for smaller businesses
And on the consumer side:
1. Verifying that only those age 21 and older are eligible to participate in fantasy games
2. Businesses must segregate player funds from operating expenses
3. Fantasy games will be offered only at the professional sport level
View more information at our Presentation page.
How We’re Fighting Back for You
In March, SBFSTA members and lobbyists traveled to Albany to meet with the offices for NY Senator John Bonacic and NY Assemblyman Gary Pretlow. That trip spread awareness about the prevalence of small businesses in fantasy sports and how proposed legislation would do far more harm than good. The trip also created momentum for a revised New York bill. Here’s a short video from that important day.
Of course, that was just one state…. there are dozens more that are considering legislation that would be toxic to fantasy companies and fantasy players. We will be active in every state to make sure our voice is heard!
Join the SBFSTA
Small businesses in the fantasy sports industry have joined forces in creating the SBFSTA, a non-profit organization whose goal is to fight for the small business interests and allow us to continue servicing the loyal fantasy customer community.
With support from fantasy sports small businesses and fantasy sports players like you, we will work to ensure that 50,000,000 fantasy players nationwide can continue to enjoy the hobby they love at the outlets of their choosing, and not as a result of poorly written legislation creating an industry duopoly. Both small and mid-sized fantasy businesses as well as fantasy players are encouraged to join and support our efforts. We offer business memberships, player supporter memberships as well as a straight donation.
HOW CAN I HELP?
Our biggest need is monetary support. Hiring lobbyists, PR people, and travel expenses costs a lot of money. But those are the weapons we need to win this fight for your rights to play fantasy sports. Any amount you can spare —even $10, $20 or $25 - will help us educate legislators about this industry. We explain that the bills they are passing destroy the fantasy industry - which is backboned by small businesses - and the ability for players like you to enjoy the hobby they love.
Talk to Your Legislators
We’ve witnessed first-hand how meeting with lawmakers can change their minds. And you can have that same power. Organize in-person, sit-down meetings with your local and state legislators to educate them. Believe it or not, most legislators don’t know that the fantasy sports industry is made up of hundreds of companies - not just FanDuel and DraftKings.
Email us to assist and coordinate with these important efforts or you can look them up yourself right here.
Contact us today ([email protected]) to join our newsletter list and get involved in our grassroots campaign to take on FanDuel and DraftKings. Tell them that they will not take over the industry you’ve enjoyed for years.
Join the Fight
The businesses, the people, and the players that stand on our side will wage this battle. Collectively, we can improve the legislative landscape for fantasy sports and ensure its viability for years to come. But we need your support today.