Game of Skill or Game of Choice

Marnetta S. - LLI Akron

What do you think of when you think of fantasy sports? Do you think of men and women crowded in a room staring at their phones, hungry for money? On the other hand, do you picture millions of different people all across the world using their knowledge of players and using their brain activity to construct teams that would go against other opponents? Determining if fantasy sports is considered gambling has been a controversy in our modern day world. 

What is gambling? Gambling can be considered many things, such as: casino gambling, the lottery, street betting, and more. In contrast, fantasy sports involves critical thinking, knowledge of the game, and out-smarting the other players. Fantasy sports is just a basic game. 

Professor Nelson Rose states that, "all prizes and awards offered to winning participants are established and made known to the participants in advance of the game or contest and their value is not determined by the number of participants or the amount of any fees paid by those participants.” The prizes are set and notice is given prior to the game. It is not influenced by how many people play or how much each person paid. 

The players are not competing against each other directly in real world games. The only things that are “real” about the games are the statistics from the individual athletes. The computer then combines the information about real world performances to determine which fantasy team won.

This is not about betting on athletes in a game, what the score will be, or how many points an athlete will score. It is a fictional team that goes against other fictional teams. 

People have also expressed the opinion that fantasy sports is a form of addiction. However, anything in excess can become an addiction, such as food, drugs, phones, etc. 
According to the article, A.G. Schneiderman announced a $12 million settlement with DraftKings and Fanduel. It states, “Fanduel misled consumers about the substantial advantages high volume and professional players had over other players.” The text also states that the high volume and professional players used internet sources to find out the latest data on athletes, match ups, and game conditions, using computer programs to automate this process. Because these players used outside sources to “cheat” the app does not mean the company should suffer. 

Fantasy sports should not be considered gambling because fantasy sports has closely regulated guidelines. Fantasy sports are games of skill, NOT games of chance.  



  • Rose, Nelson. "Gambling and the Law: Are Daily Fantasy Sports Legal?" Web blog post. Gambling and the Law. Asian Gaming Lawyer. October 2015.
  • First Amended Complaint. The People of the State of New York v. Draft Kings. Index No. 453054. 31 Dec. 2015. 
  • "A.G. Schneiderman Announces $12 Million Settlement with Draftkings and Fanduel." Press Release. New York Office of the Attorney General. 
  • Woodward, Curt. "DraftKings to Settle Lawsuit from N.Y. for $6m." Globe Staff. The Boston Globe. 25 Oct 2016.
  • Gouker, Dustin. "Daily Fantasy Sports is Back in Business in New York: Gov. Cuomo Signs Bill." Daily Fantasy Sports. Legal Sports Report, 3 Aug 2016.